Wishing you all A Happy Easter

Greetings from Prairie Oak Ranch

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Welcome to 2016

Seems I had a blog ready for December and January but didn’t push the right button. So here we are the beginning of March and I am just catching up to the rest of the world.

Cuttings  at the Silver Slate Arena have been going well for The Wright Team. We might be small but so far we have been mighty. Alaina Braybrook and Allegra Claughton have been picking up checks nearly every class in the 2k limit rider. Dave Cuming is enjoying the Arizona Sun but we will hopefully see him on a more regular basis, April.

We have some new talent on the horizon for the coming season Taylor Anderson, barrel racer / team roper extraordinaire has now set her sights on cutting. We welcome her to the Wright Team at Prairie Oak Ranch.

We have been fortunate this year thus far with above normal temperatures. Makes it easier on the feed bill but will need moisture sooner than later.


Prairie Oak Ranch has been hosting a seminar every second Wednesday (Wine Wednesday) with special guests including veterinarians, farriers, saddle makers, Light treatments and a visit with the Alpha Omega Pharmaceuticals Rep. We will continue these through until July where we will take the summer off to enjoy the extra daylight. Any one wishing more info on the up and coming seminars don’t hesitate to send a message and we will get back to you.

We have a used department for tack so if you are in need of anything from show blankets to bits give me a call.







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Happy Halloween



Was I texting while driving and missed the summer:)??? It seems to have gone by that quickly. I have missed a few months of keeping up here on the Prairie Oak Ranch site and I can only say it has been so busy with new riders I have not had time. Life should settle in soon with the new programs and all will be back to normal

Show season for the weekend haulers is over and the Futurities are winding down with the Wrangler Futurity at Stampede Park, bringing the Canadian Shows to an end for 2015. We wish all the competitors the very best of luck and to Dave Cuming and The Badger Next Door kind cows as he makes his debut in the Agrium in the Non Pro 7 up October 18 2015

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Horsemanship Part 2

Part 11

I  became a thinker of the ‘hows and whys’, we as athletes, riders and horses for that matter, do the things the way we do. I asked myself “what do all of these have in common”? The answer that came to me was balance,timing and feel, flexibility and centering or core . The rest with proper guidance would ultimately fall into place.

Now to the less informed this all seems pretty simple; just as I had thought Keep one leg one each side and your mind in the middle was but realized with more experience such was not the case.

Your horse reacts to pressure, your mood swings and your energy, and will  take flight when things go wrong.

A person has a tendency to force this creature into doing things just because, but it has become more apparent as time goes on that the old saying :You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make him drink applies to more than that.


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Spring is officially a few days away.

Its hard to believe we made it thru the winter with only a week or so of very cold weather. This winter seems to have been as equally bizarre as last winter only on the opposite ends of the thermometer.

Horses are shedding, snow birds returning from Arizona and plans at the ranch are being made for clinics , lessons and training programs.

Happy Easter from the Wright Team


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Horsemanship starts with “One leg on each side and your mind in the middle”

As a child riding properly was important to my parents. “One leg on each side of your horse and your mind in the middle” is something I heard my father say day after day. I thought “why would he say that?” It was pretty obvious to me.  It wasn’t until I reached my twenties, however, that I realized, other than being visually obvious, there was a hidden message there to be learned. I set out to seek the under lying message and continue learning about it to this day . My mentors are the likes of Richard Shrake A Trainers Trainer/The Ultimate Coach; Iris Kellet, European Champion Jumper; Barbra Schulte Mental Toughness; Sally Swift Centered Riding;  and of course, my parents.

I want to add at this time that teaching is not an easy career no matter how successful you are as competitor. I have first hand knowledge of this with my skiing career.

I honestly do not remember learning to ski, or ride for that matter, as that came to me before I could walk. However, in my teens I decided I would teach skiing after classes at university. I was considered a good skier, had been a good racer, so becoming a good teacher just seemed to be the obvious next step. What a surprise I received. I could do it all but had no idea how to break it down in easy explainable steps. Hmm, the only thing I could do was coerce one of my colleges to give me a few lessons and there it began; my life as a teacher in a variety of activities.

Teaching riding seemed a good fit. I enjoyed competition and I enjoyed teaching, so why not combine the two and start a new career as a cutting horse trainer/personal coach. My personal competition retirement came in 2009 after reaching two of my personal goals in the cutting world – qualifying for the World Finals and winning the Open Cutting in Canada. I succeeded at both, as well having one student win the Worlds, and a second take Top 15.

My teaching skills were showing results, but I felt there was more to teaching than the competitive side of the western world. In my travels I found that many people didn’t want to compete but wanted to improve their riding skills for their own enjoyment. In the last few years I have started to expand my horizons by taking on many recreational riders. This expansion has become just as rewarding as taking my cutters to the show pen or teaching an international clinic. It’s great to see the change in horses and riders by just keeping a leg on each side and their mind in the  middle.

Stay tuned for the next  session of Horsemanship with Cub. Feel free to ask any questions. You will see on my web site that critique by video is available and beneficial to those who are unable to attend a personal session with Cub.


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Blessed by a taste of spring

Mother nature has a wild sense of humour.  I personally don’t find it so funny as the thermometer drops to minus temps and cold winds blow in once more. We did get spoiled these past few weeks with the sunshine and temperatures in the plus. On a recent trip to Vancouver I was in awe at the flowers in bloom and the trees starting to show their buds. We might be a while before that happens here. The horses however may know something we don’t as they are starting to shed.

Ranch life is busy as usual, lots of new riders and horses. Some want to be competitive cutters others just want to improve their riding skills. It is not a requirement that you be competitive to enjoy your horse at least not at Prairie Oak Ranch. The riding program is expanding to include English Training as well remember  it is your seat not your style”.  Challenge yourself to ride with your feet and your seat. No hands sometimes no bridle

Cub started riding English at an early age, then in her twenties moved to Ireland and took the opportunity to ride under the tutelage of the legendary show jumper Iris Kellet for a year. Iris was the winner of the Championship of Europe.  Cub’s core basics of riding is Centered Riding, personally learned from Sally Swift. Several years ago Cub with Margaret Dawson (one of her students ) ventured to Vermont to meet Sally. It was at that time that Sally asked Cub to ride some horses for her. Impressed with Cub’s skills she remained in close contact with Cub until her death in  April 02,2009.

With the currant changes in our business module  please checkout the website over the next few weeks. It will take on a new face with much more information. Check it out and please feel free to give us feed back.


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Cha Cha Cha the warmblood with a story!!!

This past summer I was asked if I would take on a warm blood. Hmm haven’t been requested to do that during my life as a horse trainer. I pondered this for a bit then asked “what was the history”? It was an interesting story but one that didn’t make much sense. She had arrived a year or two earlier from germany and showed signs of some issue. It was decided she was afraid of horses, but they are herd animals, how can that be?? Then it came out that in actual fact when ridden with a group of horses in an arena this mare would come to a halt and reverse very quickly making it difficult for the rider.  Her reward was to be taken back to the barn, so being a very smart horse she continued on with this pattern and pretty soon no one would ride her. She seemed a very sad horse when she arrived and a bit under weight. The answers began to unfold as we worked with her. She had been confined to a stall and small outside pen by herself. The weight issue was merely recognizing the fact she was a serious cribber and her collar was required at all times when out side.  With out the ability to intake air and make herself feel full she would eat until she actually was full. The weight she put on was amazing in fact her owner had never seen her in such good shape.

Her training began the first day. So to see how fearful she was of horses, so we turned her into the arena with an old faithful horse and they quickly buddied up. That was not the issue, so we saddled her up the next day and went back to basics. It is not to say we didn’t have our struggles certainly did and I had to dig deep into my bag of tricks to stay on top of this rehab program. Respect was definitely required, she had no understanding of where her space bubble was,and she would  just push her way into my space when ever she felt. Soon we had that corrected ,on with the riding.

Western saddle did not bother her at all. Western smooth snaffle and draw reins was where we started. She was ridden a few days on her own so we could get the feel of her and she was softening to us. Then we would put one horse in the arena and go in the same direction, then in opposite direction. There were a few struggles as she wanted to turn and run, but hey she forgot we rode cutting horses so nothing she could throw at us was any quicker than what we already new, except she was bigger. Soon we had her going in between two horses. So now what ? Lets treat her like a horse and take out in the fields and ride her past the buffalo, in fact lets bring in the cattle and then the buffalo. All went well although she was a bit shocked at the site of all these moving pieces instead of fixed jumps. This was the day her owner had his first visit and he was dually impressed. His expensive horse that came with little value was showing him that maybe she could redeem herself and become the jumper he had bought a few years ago. It was then shared with us she had ejected him and he suffered a broken hip. Oh my we don’t need anything like that to happen. Not to be deterred form our plan we kept forging forward with the idea of just letting her be a horse for awhile. No pressure except that she respect us on her back or on the ground and go where we asked.

Next step was to go to the out side arena and have horses jump a small cavaletti as we were riding around. Again her pretend panick set in but we did not weaken and finally she realized she could not beat us with her game. Ah ah the light bulb came on and she settled in, no more reactions or explosions. She was becoming a nice horse and a pleasure to ride. Departure day came after a lengthy discussion between the owner and myself. She needed a rider who was very capable, yet could ask with out pressuring. That rider was non other than margaret     from Germany. They were a match made in heaven. The first show in Spruce they had good a few faults and slower times but every day there was a steady improvement. Soon this horse that everyone was so negative about was now demanding a second look. She continues to improve and now is cruising a meter ten with no problems. Its very heartwarming to be part of a great horses rehab. Patience with persistance, respect with a few rules and last but not least horse is a horse let them be one.

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Whats a birthday party with out a horse???

Happy BIrthday

Diversification is the key to a successful business right?? This fall when I was approached about hosting a little girls fifth birthday, I hesitated for only a few minutes then replied “yes”.This was some thing new , however as an certified event planner it was certainly something we could make work.

The only request was we supplied a horse for all the little ones in attendance and have just the horse. Rox has almost been a lifer here at the ranch, well for the last half of his life which 11 years. He loves his job and if coached will show you how he pushes the ball around with his nose all by himself.

You have the option of suppling  cake, snacks,beverage and we supply the horse and a few decorations, or we will supply it all. For the latter we need a months lead time if a cake is required with a special design.

In either case a good time will be had by all. We do limit the numbers to ten. With our heated indoor facility winter works as well as summer when we can hold the party outside.

Give us a call you won’t be disappointed.



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So do we have an early spring??

Happy Valentines Day


Its been a wonderful winter. Life has been busy, plenty of new riders and horses. Clinics and lessons have been well attended.

The temperatures in general have been great, well not every day but for the most part.

The Canadian Cutting Horse Awards Banquet was a great success fabulous meal and our ever charming announcer Ron Anderson. Your sense of humor and quick wit never ceases to amaze me.

To the organizers Connie Delorme and Lisa Christianson thank you to you and your committees for a great evening.

Les Jack is our new President, he takes the reins from Les Timmons. Les has been the President for a number of years. Thank you Les for a job well done. We look forward to Les Jack and his board of directors to lead us into the future with strength for keeping the CanadianCutting Horse Association alive in what ever format works best for all. Its history should not be forgotten.

Half way into February and spring seems to be just around the corner. However mother nature has tricked us before. But there is no penalty for wishing right????

Over the years many people have asked me to blog and share some of the knowledge I have gathered through life as it relates to horses. Not just cutting horses but all horses.

Well actually the request has been a book but I think blogging would be more personal for all of you who have questions of interest on a certain topic . Over the next few months watch for these . I would welcome your input; any topics you wish to be discussed, any questions you want answered. I will start with “Why Do I Feel Horsemanship is Important” in March 2015.

In the meantime have a wonderful family weekend with loved ones.


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