4 Routt County teenagers exhibit skilled wild horses this weekend


Nina Bradley of Steamboat Springs has been working along with her yearling Cheeto all summer season as a part of the Meeker Mustang Makeover. She’ll present and promote the yearling this weekend.
Shelby Reardon/Steamboat Pilot & At the moment

It took two weeks for Kristina Mitchell to the touch her horse’s face. The Steamboat Springs Excessive College senior anticipated a problem in her first time collaborating within the Meeker Mustang Makeover, however she was somewhat stunned by how lengthy it took for her yearling, Nova, to earn her belief. 

“After I first acquired her, she was tremendous shy and fairly fearful however she was fairly curious,” Mitchell mentioned. “Should you gave her the possibility, she’d take you up on the provide to smell. Now she’s tremendous pleasant. She likes to be scratched. You may simply maintain her head, and she or he’d be proud of that. She’s actually assured and good.”

After spending all summer season bolstering her horse’s confidence and desensitizing her to day-after-day issues, motions and actions, Mitchell is able to exhibit her filly on the stay public sale on Saturday, Aug. 27, on the Rio Blanco Fairgrounds.

Mitchell mentioned she took it sluggish with Nova, particularly within the early days coaching her.

“Strolling on the lead even, simply being led round, we took it in actually small steps so she solely acquired good affiliation with it.”

Now, the younger Mustang is okay with objects being waved close to her face and other people leaping round her.

“She is so loyal and prepared to please, it’s loopy,” Mitchell mentioned, including it’s one thing that made Nova stand out in comparison with different horses she’s labored with up to now. “She follows me round like a pet. Should you’re attempting to show her one thing new, she tries so many alternative issues to see what you’re asking. She is unquestionably pleased with herself when she will get one thing proper.”

Kristina Mitchell of Steamboat Springs poses along with her yearling, Nova. She’s been working with the previously wild horse all summer season as a part of the Meeker Mustang Makeover and can present and promote her this weekend.
Kristina Mitchell/Courtesy photograph

Mitchell is one among 4 members from the Yampa Valley and one of some doing the mustang makeover for the primary time. 

Nina Bradley, a junior at Steamboat Springs Excessive College, can be coaching a yearling as a part of the makeover for the primary time.

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“I’ve all the time seen YouTube movies of individuals doing it, and it all the time appeared so enjoyable,” Bradley mentioned. “Final yr a few my mates did it. This yr, I used to be like, ‘it’s time.’”

Bradley is boarding the horse at a barn south of city. Having a spot to maintain the horse is among the larger challenges for some opponents. Mitchell’s horse is bunking with Morgan Yeiser’s horse in south valley. Yeiser was a coach final yr as nicely. Jason Heid of Clark can be coaching for the second straight yr. 

Bradley has labored with horses up to now however was ready to be challenged along with her yearling, Cheeto.

“I anticipated it to be actually onerous,” Bradley mentioned. “I believed they have been going to be completely loopy and attempting to kill me the entire time. I acquired actually fortunate along with her. She’s been simple to work with.”

On Day One, Cheeto was nervous and was working round and calling for different horses when she acquired to Steamboat. She quickly calmed down, although, and Bradley was in a position to contact her on the primary day, which was pleasantly shocking.

“The largest problem was discovering time to work along with her as a result of I needed to come out day-after-day, at first at the least, for a very good two or three hours,” Bradley mentioned. “It’s slowed down somewhat bit now that she’s a traditional common horse.”

This weekend marks the top of the trainers’ time with their horses, as they current their ponies in entrance of a stay and on-line public sale. Trainers will compete in an impediment course and freestyle, exhibiting simply how far these previously wild horses have are available in simply 120 days.

“We’re hoping to put nicely and primarily have her be well-behaved at a present,” Bradley mentioned. “I’m hoping to promote her to a very good household.”


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