Modeled after the traditional Extreme Mustang Makeover format, the Trainer’s Challenge featured trainers from across the country who picked out their previously untouched wild horse in early September during the Fort Worth Extreme Mustang Makeover. Shaking things up with a random draw for selection position this year, the trainers had just a few hours to view the horses and make a personal list of their top picks, not knowing if they’d still be available by the time their number was called. One by one, they made their selections and headed home to begin the 120-day journey to competition.
On Thursday, January 19, 2023, trainers and their mustangs entered the Will Rogers Coliseum at the Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo to complete the first preliminary class, Handling and Conditioning, followed by the Maneuvers class that afternoon. On Friday, all trainers returned to the Coliseum to complete the Trail and Compulsory Maneuvers classes which wrapped up the preliminaries. Scores and rankings were tallied, and the Top 10 were announced Saturday morning.
The Trainer’s Challenge Freestyle Finals were held Saturday, January 21st which began with opening ceremonies by Maddie Rose and Culver Academies. One by one, each Top 10 trainer entered the arena with their previously wild counterpart to showcase their connection and horsemanship in amazing freestyle routines for a sold-out crowd. In the end, it was Nate Eicher of Mineral Wells, TX, and Bet Shez Velvet, a 5-year-old mare out of the Fish Creek, NV, HMA, who took home the top prize.
A replay of the finals performance can be found on CowboyChannel+.
Full class placings and adoption results, as well as horse and trainer information can be found here.
Mustang Heritage Foundation would like to personally thank each and every one of the trainers who helped make this year’s Mustang Magic one for the record books. Your dedication to horsemanship and the American Mustang is second to none and we are proud to have you as part of the Mustang Family.
And congratulations to the adopters who were able to bring home their next forever during the Trainer’s Challenge adoption Saturday evening. We look forward to hearing your future stories!
To learn more about Mustang Magic, visit: mustangheritagefoundation.org/2023-mustang-magic-recap/
About the Mustang Heritage Foundation
The Mustang Heritage Foundation is dedicated to facilitating successful placements for America’s excess wild mustangs and burros through innovative programs, events and education. The Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. More than 25,000 mustangs have been placed into private care through Mustang Heritage Foundation events and programs since 2007. For more information, visit mustangheritagefoundation.org.
About the Bureau of Land Management
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) removes wild horses and burros from public lands to ensure a healthy balance of land and animals. Since 1971, the BLM has placed more than 250,000 wild horses and burros into good homes nationwide. Partnerships, like the Mustang Heritage Foundation, provide the BLM with additional opportunities to place animals into good homes. Interested applicants can attend BLM offsite adoption/sales event, visit a BLM Off-Range Corral, or participate in an Internet adoption/sales event to apply to take a wild horse or burro home! To learn more about the Wild Horse and Burro Program, please call 866-468-7826 or visit blm.gov/whb.
The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land is primarily located in 12 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of subsurface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s mission is to manage and conserve America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield.
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