Wild to Mild: horse trainers wanted for 2020 Meeker Mustang Makeover

The first Meeker Mustang Makeover was a big success and the group is gearing up for the next event, planned for Sept.
Courtesy Photo

MEEKER | The second annual 2020 Meeker Mustang Makeover is full speed ahead and calling all horse trainers to compete for $8,000 in prize money. Meeker will once again offer visitors a chance for a magical two for one… the chance to attend both the internationally renowned Meeker Classic Sheepdog Championship Trials during the day, and on Friday night, watch regional horse trainers compete to take wild mustangs to mild. Tickets for the Meeker Mustang Makeover at the gate will be $5, children 12 and under are free. Sheepdog tickets are separate.

Using area wild horses, the event will pit 10 trainers, both professional and amateur, against each other in a saddle competition after only a hair raising 100 days to start and train a wild mustang.

New this year is a youth event for five trainers between the age of 10 and 18 in a halter only class, with the chance to earn scholarship funds of $400 each by satisfying the requirements of handling an obstacle course for their wild horse yearlings.

Last year the stands were full, with nearly 1,000 people watching the competition. Trainers will need to complete an obstacle course, move cattle, and perform their own exciting freestyle surprises. Last year’s winners were two young sisters, ages 10 and 12, with their father Joe Wood. Trainers are allowed to work as a team.

Following the competition, horses will be auctioned off to the crowd. The payoff for saddle trainers is big: They can win part of the  $8,000 in prize money and also receive 50% of the proceeds of their horse’s sale, in addition to the BLM Adoption Incentive Program money of $500 after two months and an additional $500 if they adopt the horse at the end of the year.

Interested trainers should immediately Billy Goedert (billygoedert@gmail.com). The final date for application is April 30. Trainers will pick up their horses on May 30 at the BLM office in Meeker, Colorado, and show their mustang magic on Friday, Sept. 11 at the Rio Blanco County Meeker Fairgrounds. Accommodations will be made should the coronavirus epidemic disrupt the event.

The program is designed to help ready mustangs for adoption and use, while educating the public about the mustang population in northwest Colorado, and the Piceance-East Douglas HMA herds. Horses will be 3 years old, a prime age for training (and 1 year old for the youth event.)

Interested trainers should reach out right away to: Billy Goedert: 970-629-5848, Billygoedert@gmail.com