Colt Starting Challenge USA

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Taylor County Fairgrounds, Abilene Texas
May 12 & 13, 2017
1700 Highway 36, Abilene Texas     Facility phone number 325-677-4376

- 6 ROUND PENS.....

The Western Heritage Classic Colt Starting Challenge will have 6 Contestants who will start, gentle and ride 6 unbroke horses in just a few hours. These horses have never been saddled, bridled, nor ridden, however they are halter broke. 

Come and watch all 6 Natural Horsemanship Trainers work their horses at the same time. They will have 2 one hour sessions to work with their horse in their round pen with a 10 minute break in between. Each Trainer will explain to the audience, one at a time, what they are doing and why as they work with their horse.

The next day, all 6 Trainers continue their work with their horses in the round pens. Some will choose to leave the round pens and ride their horse in the arena as they prepare their horses for the obstacle course. They will all have two 45 minute sessions to work with their horse, with a 10 minute break in between. 

Then all 6 Trainers will each have 12 minutes to ride their horse thru the obstacle course, one at a time. The Judges decide the Winner and a Buckle is awarded. 

Contestants entered for
The Western Heritage Classic Colt Starting Challenge
​                1. Briana LaFleur
            Granbury, TX

                2. Matt Snelus, TX

                3. Keith Messick
                       Snyder, TX

                4. Travis Aaron
                     Franklin, TX

                5. Josh Still, 
                    Godley, TX

                6. Steve Graycheck
                     Carrolton, GA

Biography and Contact Information of 
Contestants for the Western Heritage Classic

​The Winner
is awarded a 
Champion Trainer Buckle

Briana Lafleur 
I was born and raised in Blackstone, Massachusetts. Briana has been passionate about competing and training horses for over 13 years. Her passion for horses grew ever since she was a little girl. She helped her Grandma ride and train horses and eventually accepted her own clients’ horses to train. She has competed in multiple disciplines of equestrian competition including reining, barrel racing and endurance races. Briana has also competed with and trained all kinds of horses from bucking stock horses to ponies putting soft and supple handles on them. 

Most recently, Briana competed in the Extreme Mustang Makeover event in Fort Worth, Texas. Briana’s first time competing in the event resulted in an impressive 8th place finish. In fact, Briana’s performance was highlighted in the e-magazine, being the only rider/trainer to secure a top 10 position as a first time competitor.  

Briana moved to Texas 4 years ago and started TLC Horse Services out of Granbury, TX offering her clients professional horse training as well as professional farrier services. Today, Briana’s training services focus mainly on colt starting, problem horses and finishing reining horses. Briana hopes to start breeding her own horses and wants to enter as many colt starting competitions as possible to display and hone her colt starting skills. Through TLC Horse Services, Briana continues to inspire and teach people how to build a partnership with their horses built on mutual respect and trust. It is this type of partnership that can provide people and their horses with endless possibilities where only the sky is the limit!
Daniel Murphy recently began to pursue his interest in horse training after riding bulls for many years. Daniel was introduced to the horse training profession several years ago and has since started a horse training business, Simply Supple.

Daniel learned his horse training skills from experienced horsemen and women and continues to thirst for more horsemanship knowledge. He enjoys working with young, green horses teaching them how to be soft and supple. He believes in firm but fair techniques while always encouraging the horse to find the right answers.

Daniel recently competed in the Extreme Mustang Makeover in Fort Worth, Texas which tested his knowledge and skills on a very difficult mustang. Daniel’s determination and skills allowed him to successfully complete every challenge at the event. Daniel hopes to compete in the Extreme Mustang 
Makeover event again as well as colt starting challenges.

Daniel hopes to build his own training facility this year and continue to expand his horsemanship career.

My name is Keith Messick. I live in Snyder, TX. I have always enjoyed horses. I begin breaking horses 15 years ago and have tried many methods until I have successfully come up with my own. 

Each horse has a mind of its own and as a trainer you have to figure each horse out. I have begin a new journey of calf roping and training calf horses. 

It is very enjoyable to see the transformation horses can make with proper training.  
My name is Josh Still and I was born and raised in West Tx before I eventually settled in Godley, Tx, where i now live with my wife and children.
 Ive turned my passion into a successful career of starting colts under saddle, teaching the basics of a dicispline, and putting a tune up on horses in need. All with a natural horsemanship method that I've developed through my 10+ years of experience and teachings of buck branaman.

I've competed in previous Colt starting challenges, and plan to compete in a upcoming mustang makeover challenge as well.