Monthly Archives: August 2010

OTRR hears from Spencer Turner..

Thursday I went to a little rodeo in Corder, MO that C-R McKellips Rodeo Company from Raymore, MO put on.  It was a one day rodeo that I went to watch last year when I was injured, so I thought I would enter it this year since I had nothing much to do on Thursday night.  I got there with plenty of time to spare this time, unlike last.  I drew a bay horse that none of the 16 bronc riders there that night knew. The contractor said he was glad that I had drawn that horse, he said that the horse was good for 6 seconds then need a little help from the rider to keep bucking good, and he said I should be able to keep him “picked up” and should win the rodeo.

There were a lot of riders there considering it was a little one day show, so it was good catching up with some friends I haven’t seen in a while.  They ran a few broncs with the bareback riders. I was in the second section of broncs so I helped a few buddies and got to watch some bronc riding.  When it was time for the second section of bronc riding, I got ready and found my horse. For the most part he stood well in the chute. When I nodded he had a big rear out and I marked him out well. He did buck decent for the first half of the ride, just like a bucking machine, didn’t have a bobble in him. I was riding him pretty good I thought. The second half of the ride was when I had to work a little harder to keep him bucking. He wanted to weaken and run off but I kept him going long enough for the buzzer to sound. I felt confident of the ride and the Lord blessed me with a 1st place. Two wins in a row felt good and I have to give all the Glory to God for everything! 

Until next time be safe On The Rodeo Road and God Bless!

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Lets talk to Ed at East Hazel Saddlery… Part Two


If you missed Part One, please check it out here..

Do you keep things already made on hand, or is it by order only?
I hardly ever have anything on hand unless someone didn’t pick up an order.  Usually have no problem finding a home for them though.  I usually have several custom headstalls that I make for myself hanging around the shop..  Somebody will usually stop by and want them before I get a chance to use them.  I usually have a few rope saddles on hand at all times to.

What makes your pieces different from other peoples?
I am a custom maker.  If you get something from me it’s probably the only one.  The great thing about making tack as it is ordered each item is different, they might be similar but you will never be at a rodeo and the person next to you will have the exact same gear on their horse!  I make everything out of the best materials I can find and I don’t cut corners.  If I don’t like it I will redo it until I do.  The only drawback to this is that I’m slow.  I can’t turn out tack fast.  The main thing that make me different is that I’m accessible.  If something happens to something I made for you I will stop what I am doing and get the issues fixed as soon as I can. I think customer service is sometimes overlooked in this business.  My customers are a priority to me so it is important to get them back out on the Rodeo Road!

Where do you see your business in 5 years?
In five years from now I hope to be in a little stand alone shop instead of working out of my basement.  I hope to continually build a happy and loyal customer base. I’m going to stay focused on my goal of producing simple, stylish, durable and affordable tack and saddles for everyone from beginners to world champions alike!!!

Everybody, thank you for your time and interest in what I do!  If there is anything I can help you with or do for you, or if you have any questions please feel free to contact me!

Thanks again, God Bless, and Long Live The Cowboy!!!

Ed Rehmus
5357  New Providence Road
Hazel Ky 42049

Here are some additional pictures from East Hazel Saddlery….

OTRR wants to give a HUGE Thanks to Ed at East Hazel Saddlery for opening up his tack shop to us and letting us show off his beautiful work! Thanks again! 

Be sure and check back for more from Ed, he will be showcasing more pieces in the next few months.

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Injury has added to Cody Cassidy's struggles this season

Cody Cassidy finally found a steer at a rodeo this past weekend that would lie down for him.

It happened at Pincher Creek on Sunday morning, when the reigning Canadian champion flung the steer to the ground in 3.6 seconds.

It didn’t win first, but it was fast enough to tie for third, which paid $1,180.

Yet, when the results from the 30 weekend rodeos were tallied, Cassidy dropped out of the lead in the world steer wrestling standings for the first time since March, when he won $52,650 at the Reliant Stadium rodeo in Houston.

Paydays have been few and far between for the 29-year-old Donalda product since then.

For example, he last won a cheque at the Colorado Springs Wranger Tour rodeo on July 17, when he finished fifth in the aggregate for $2,600.

Prior to that, he placed in the money at each of three rodeos on a mid-June weekend at Brooks, Rocky Mountain House and Marwayne. The return then was a mere $2,100.

“Just about everything that could go wrong has been going wrong,” Cassidy lamented. “A combination of a lot of things has been bugging me.”

He pointed to drawing bad steers, horse problems and not making strong runs. He didn’t mention an injury, but, it, too, has had a negative impact.

The two-time Canadian champion sustained a double fracture of the scaphoid bone in his left wrist joint during the July holiday weekend rodeo at Williams Lake, B.C.

Mention that injury among bull riders and they shudder; it’s much too common in their event. (read more)

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Introducing East Hazel Saddlery………………

Hey OTRR Fans! Grab a cup of coffee, sit back and learn about East Hazel Saddlery, owner Ed Rehmus and see some pics of some GORGEOUS tack!! We are BIG fans and we know you will be too………

Ed, Tell us how long you have been in business and what got you started?

Well this all started about 14 years ago when I bought a calf roping saddle to bulldog out of.  That thing was wore out,  something was constantly breaking and getting me killed in the practice pen.  After getting tired of picking dirt out of my ears from all the wrecks and no one around here that I know of that worked on saddles I decided to work on it my self.  I went to the local western store and they have a VCR tape on saddle building.  So I rented it and tore that old saddle apart.  A week later i had a usable saddle with new fenders, stirrup leathers, and I narrowed the horn and re wrapped it.  Fast forward ten years I really wasn’t making that much stuff.  I made some split ear head stalls for  friends for Christmas because I was broke and couldnt afford to buy them anything.  They were simple copies of a Jon Isrel head stalls.  After that Christmas the orders started coming in.

Tell us how you got involved in rodeo and how it has influenced your business now?

My rodeo career got started in an  unlikely way, I didn’t grow up on a farm or ranch.  We did have a horse for a couple years when I was little but never had any aspirations of being a cowboy.  I was a freshman in college, and just got back from the 1992 Olympic try outs for Tae kwon Do.  Man I got my but kicked out there and was really burned out.  My room mate at the time Chuck Zickus, introduced me to some guys on the rodeo team at Murray State.  They were the coolest people I have ever been around.  So that is were I caught the Rodeo Disease!   Rodeoing has influenced my business in a couple ways.   First,  it has made me strive to make a product that is rodeo tough.  I always hated when something tore up right after I got it or between runs on my bulldogging horse.  I only use the best leather and hardware I can find. And I make my tack a little heavier than needed.   Secondly I make my tack to be simple, stylish and affordable!  Affordable and dependable being the key. 


What are your goals for East Hazel Saddlery?
The main goal is to make great leather goods that make my customers happy.  Happy customers are who have made tack business a possibility to begin with.  I want to continually hone my leather skills so I can keep making my products better!!

Are you all your products customized?
Right now everything is custom, except for the Isrel head stalls and sometime I tool those up too!!  Everything is hand cut one at a time, tooled and sewn by me.  Heck I even hand rub the edges of each piece for the best finish I can achieve.

What made you decide to begin working with leather?
What really got me interested in leather work were beautiful custom saddles.  I know that sounds weird but that’s what got  me interested.   One of the guys that helped me the most with my bulldogging always had great horses, and custom saddles.  At time I had no idea who Council, Barnes, Hogg, or Slone was but they were all there in his barn..  Every time I was over there I was going through his saddle racks looking at the saddles like they were works of art, and really they were!!

I am sure many of you are going to run to the phone to contact Ed about his goregous stuff! Here is his contact information:

East Hazel Saddlery
5357  New Providence Road
Hazel Ky 42049

Please stayed tuned for Part 2 of our interview with Ed from East Hazel Saddlery coming up later this week! Lots more to share and more pictures!

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It is never to late….at 56,Bill Parker thrilled to be back in the saddle

Bill Parker was getting restless.

Over the years, Parker tried to feed that need to compete through his horse sales business and cutting horse competitions.

But it just wasn’t quite enough.

And the roping success of nephew Delon Parker stoked that competitive fire even more.

In early March, Parker made a decision and discussed it with his wife Jann.

“I told Jann I was going to sell my show horses and buy a couple of roping horses and rope again,’’ said the Huntley cowboy.

The conversation was a short one.

“You’re crazy,’’ Jann Parker told her husband.

Even Parker’s associates agreed with his wife.

Long-time friend and former team roping world champion Dee Pickett echoed Jann Parker’s response. “You’re crazy,’’ Parker heard again. Pickett even offered to drive from his place to Parker’s so the two could talk about it.

Parker was firm in his decision.

Jann Parker understood better than most. When Bill Parker decides on something, he’s all in. He does not take shortcuts.

“I love to compete,’’ said the 56-year-old Parker. “Whether it’s showing horses, cutting horses or roping. And I wanted to do something with Delon.’’

There was just one slight hitch to Parker’s planned comeback.

He hadn’t thrown a competitive rope in a rodeo arena in 17 years. His ropes had been collecting dust since he and Dennis Tryan of Huntley team roped together in 1993.

However, if there was anybody in rodeo who could return to the arena, it’s Parker.

He’s the only competitor from Montana to qualify for the National Finals Rodeo in tie-down roping and he also competed at the NFR in team roping. Parker is a multiple Montana Pro Rodeo Circuit champion and although there are no official records, is believed to be the winningest cowboy in the history of the annual MontanaFair rodeo in Billings.

“This was always my big dream as a kid, to rope in front of this grandstand’’ said Parker Thursday night after team roping with Rod Lyman. He roped at his first MontanaFair rodeo in 1972.

 Parker did what he said, purchasing a couple of roping horses. However, his re-entry to rodeo hit a few bumps.

He suffered a minor heart attack on May 7. Doctors put in two stents and he went to rehab three days a week. “I’ve never felt better,’’ Parker said.

Three days later, his top horse was stricken with a heart attack and didn’t make it. Shortly after that, a mare that Parker planned to use was felled by colic.

“My summer was a comedy of errors,’’ Parker said, trying to inject some humor into the situation.

He bought another horse, Kid, around the Fourth of July.

“It’s just been in the past 30, 45 days that we’re starting to get together,’’ Parker said of the much-needed synchronicity between horses and rider. “We’re starting to gel now.’’

And team roping has changed since Parker last threw a loop. (read more)

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Jetta Abplanalp Storms to Victory

Grace, Idaho-In her “day job” as a budget analyst at Hill Air Force Base near Ogden, Utah, Jetta Abplanalp says she “looks at a lot of numbers all day.” But in her barrel racing career, Abplanalp gets to look at a better set of numbers-the ones on the checks she deposits in her checking account from winnings at PRCA/WPRA rodeos.

Abplanalp rode her great black gelding Storm to victory at the Caribou County Fair and Rodeo in Grace, Idaho, August 5, just days after finishing fourth in the average at the “Daddy of ’em All” in Cheyenne. Abplanalp is no stranger to WPRA wins; the tough cowgirl has been to three Wilderness Circuit Finals Rodeos (2005-06, 2008) and was the 2005 WPRA Wilderness Circuit rookie of the year.

(photo credit)

In 2009 Abplanalp married R.D., a horse shoer and team roper, and the couple had a son about a year ago named Blaze.

“I hadn’t run Storm outside in a year and half because of the time off to have my son last year,” Abplanalp says. “We just started back in June.”

In Grace, Storm and Abplanalp accomplished the incredibly tough feat of distancing the field by over two tenths. Her 17.43 posted during the second and final performance on Thursday night bested rookie Shelby Maxfield’s 17.69 for the title

and $1,061 in earnings. Abplanalp took another check at the Jerome, Idaho for a weekend haul of $1,133.

“He felt so good and open at Grace,” she says. “He was really free. In the past, I have always hit barrels there and the announcer actually has made a joke of it, saying if I hit the third I get a hot dog….(read more)

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Brandenburg Equine Therapy comes to Kentucky

Last spring, On The Rodeo Road had the pleasure of interviewing Troy Brandenburg.   If you missed this interview you will definitely want to check it out here.
Leigh and I have been fans of Troy’s for a long time.  We have longed for the chance to have him work on our horses. We wanted to learn more about his technique.  A date for him to come to the great state of Kentucky came with a  promise of Derby tickets.   Hey,  a girl has to do what a girl has to do… just kidding. However, I did get him tickets because Troy and his lovely wife, Tiffany,  were going to the Derby and I wanted it to be a great experience for them.  Derby weekend it FLOODED and there was no way to go forward with our planned day. We were very disappointed but Troy promised to come back in 3 weeks….. IT WAS SO WORTH THE WAIT!

Troy really is amazing when it comes to his profession.  We had lined up 10 horses. It was going to be a long day but that just gives everyone more opportunity to learn.  First, Troy worked on Roanie  and right off the bat before ever touching him could tell he was sore in his back. I was amazed that he could just SEE the soreness! He went to work on him, stretching, massaging, and showing me how to loosen him up. It was really an eye opening experience because I try to stay very tuned to my horses. They always get massages, liniment baths and their PHT blankets but this was so in depth. Troy pointed out some places to really work on since Roanie has some big muscling areas.  I, now, focus on these areas each time I get on him. He showed me how to see the looseness in Roanie’s muscles and know when he is ready to work.

Troy Brandenburg stretching Roanie

Next, he moved on to Leigh’s horse,  Dually.  We have had some issues with Dually such as ducking barrels and just not being real happy this year. The vet route did not improve these issues.  Troy, immediately,  showed us how tight he was in his gaskins and all through his hips. He worked on Dually for a long time and you could see the relief by the time he was done! Dually was tracking better and really stepping up under himself. We are continuing our stretching regiment with him and Dually is coming back strong!
Troy is an asset to any program. We feel very strongly about his techniques and what he does for our equine friends. Not only does he help our horses but Troy helps the owner. He educates you on what he is doing and shows you how to help your horse in a way that many people overlook.Troy takes stretching maneuvers to a whole new level.  I feel blessed to have gotten the chance to meet him and Tiffany.
If you ever have the chance to meet Troy Brandenburg and have him work on your horses, JUMP ON IT! He is definitely someone you want on your side!

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That Once in a Lifetime Horse……….


-A little girl with big dreams and a horse that made them come true…….

Christy and Reetz

I was browsing through FB the other day and stumbled upon a picture that I couldn’t take my eyes off of. It was a gorgeous shot of a barrel horse getting ready to smoke a pattern at the PRCA Salinas, California rodeo. I thought the photo was gorgeous and wanted to learn more about this photographer. After doing some Facebook investigative work, I found out that the artist was a very talented photographer that takes beautiful pictures. I decided to look at her OWN photos..not photos that had been taken by her of other horses and people, but photos of her and HER horses. Something told me there was a story to be told as I looked at one in particular. It was of Christy and her mare Reetz running at the Salinas rodeo a couple of years ago. As soon as I saw it, I just got a feeling that this horse and Christy had a great story, so I did what any crazy person does…I simply emailed her and said “hey, tell me the story about this mare. I have a feeling it is a good one” and it was……

Christy grew up in Anaheim, Ca and had a love of horses from day one. She started out on a little Welsh Pony that her aunt owned. Every weekend Christy watched as all the little girls would load up their horses and go to horse shows. Longing to go and be a part of the fun, Christy would ask her Aunt why she couldn’t. Her aunt would explain that she didn’t have the fancy saddle or the silver headstall and she needed that flash to be competitive. Christy understood later in life that her aunt just wasn’t a competitive person but to a little girl that wanted to go show her pony, it was hard!!

At 15 years old, Christy found a showbill for a local Gymkhana that was just up the road. She made it to the show and won everything!! This is where the love of going fast and barrel racing came together. Christy quickly learned that flash had nothing to do with it, it was her and her horse and a clock.

Later on Christy met a man named Angel Crosthwaite and she would have no idea the influence he would turn out to have on her life. At the time, Christy had no clue who Angel Crosthwaite was. She would later find out that he was an avid teamroper and hung out with the likes of John Ward and Les Vogt. He told her if she would babysit for him, then he would teach her how to train horses. Christy immediately agreed and started to learn the “ins” and “outs” of the horse training world. One particular day, the vet showed up to take care of some horses and casually mentioned to Christy that a lady down the road wanted to sell a mare. Christy jumped at the opportunity to try the mare. Christy watched the mare shake her head hating the bit in her mouth when others rode her.  When it was Christy’s turn she had very steady hands and didn’t touch her mouth at all. The lady that owned the mare was impressed with Christy’s ability and sold her the mare for $1000.00. Christy had to sell her saddle in order to pay for her, but she got her bought!

With her new mare , Reetz only have 30 days of total riding,  Christy got to work. Christy went back and worked with Angel some and got the mare going. It was a lot of grit and hard work. She told Angel “I have a lot of determination, don’t tell me I am doing it right if I am not!”  After a little bit of training, Christy headed out to her first jackpot and got 5th in the 2D!! Christy said she left so mad, “I was so upset that I didn’t win! I was so ignorant, I had no idea how great that was, in my mind, I didn’t win, so I didn’t do any good.”

Christy continued to haul Reetz and was all over the board with her. One weekend she would be in the 1D and the next weekend the 4D. After a lot of frustrating runs, she finally had an epiphany with her mare. Christy said “I looked at Reetz and said WE HAVE GOT TO WIN SOME MONEY! And I swear that mare looked right back at me as if to say LET ME DO MY JOB AND WE WILL!” Christy said the next time she rode her she did exactly that! They left that barrel race with a 1D check and never looked back. Reetz went on to consistently run 17’s on a standard pattern, was a consistent 1D horse and had a lot of rodeo wins. Reetz  did have her issues, just like all good barrel horses, they do have their quirks. One big problem that Christy dealt with was her gate issues. Although, with the help of Performance Products (, one of Christy’s sponsors, she was able to see a difference in her mare at the gate and soon she became more manageable.   Christy hauled Reetz all over the west coast rodeoing and barrel racing and when asked what is the most valuable thing she has learned from all her experiences she doesn’t hesitate to say “Don’t go out there to win, go out there to make your BEST run. We get too caught up in the win and if we just go out and lay down our best run, the win will come”

Christy and Reetz at Salinas CA PRCA Rodeo, Photo Credit Gene Hyder

 Christy said that Reetz had more heart and grit than any horse she has ever ridden.  At one point, she took her to a vet because of soreness and the vets exact words were “I can’t believe she can walk…let alone run a barrel pattern” Horses like that are hard to find. Christy found a once in a lifetime barrel horse standing in someone’s field. The grit and determination that BOTH of them had got them up and down the road and a lot of wins under their belt. Just goes to show what hard work can do! What started out as the love of a little welsh pony, the want to go faster and a drive and determination of a horse and rider……brought many beautiful things to Christy’s life. Christy is now a professional photographer ( and resides in Riverside, Ca.  Reetz is  retired and Christy is bringing along a gelding out of her. We wish you the best of luck Christy, keep us posted as you hit the rodeo road!

Reetz and her colt Mr. Dashin Pep Cat

-About the Author

Leigh Walkup resides in Georgetown, Ky with her two barrel horses and her Australian Shephard. She works for an Equine Health Care Publication and loves running up and down the road to barrel races!

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Amber Mostoller…Lets talk about June

Amber and Chunky

Wow…its been awhile, there has been soo much going on and it feels like my wheels have been spinning since the beginning of summer and have not stopped!!

I have been on probably 8 or 9 different horses since the beginning of June which has made for some great runs..and not soo great runs…here are the cliff notes to get us through the month of June!

June 4-5th weekend was bittersweet for me.  I was entered at 3 rodeos riding JTD Truly Streakin aka Chunky and we did GREAT winning Thomson, GA and placing at another one.  However, after the last rodeo of the weekend he went home with owner Mesa Leavitt.  Mesa also kicked butt that weekend and placed at two rodeos as well riding an old horse of ours Frosty Peppy Olena that she bought in March.

June 11-12th weekend I was on the road with my momma!!  She had been running JB Absolute (who is the mare that I qualified for the finals on last year) and mom had been kicking butt.  We went to Hillsboro, MO & Belleville, IL.  I was running Burrs Double Decker this weekend and had made two runs on her prior to the rodeos :)  Hillsboro, MO was hard as a rock and it was kind of a shock to both of us after practicing in nice deep horse show dirt.  Needless to say we did not draw a check.  We went on to Belleville, IL and we could tell it had rained there and the ground looked like it could get slick.  Decker had some problems with the ground but tried to work…no money though :(  Mom drew checks at both rodeos!!  I told her she had better since I placed at both those rodeos the year before on Abby as well :)

To Be Continued….

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Spencer Turner.. 15 Minutes before they bucked broncs

I decided to stay close to the house and enter a rodeo in Warsaw, MO which was put on by C-R Mckellips Rodeo Company. I had the day off work so I was relaxing and doing stuff around home and wasn’t too worried about time because Warsaw is less than an hour from the house. Well I kind of lost track of time (and to be honest I overslept my nap). I hurried down there and got there about 15 minutes before they bucked broncs. I had got a phone call from a buddy on my way down there and he had told me what horse I had drawn. It was branded 502.  I made a phone call to another buddy and found out that the horse was a pretty common horse but fun to ride. So I knew what to expect and didn’t have to ask guys after I got there.

Like I said I pulled in 15 minutes or so before they bucked broncs. I paid my entry fees and got ready. I found my horse and saddled him. He was a little black horse who stood really well in the chute. It came my turn and I crawled down on him. He became a little nervous when I sat on him and moved from side to side. I put my feet in the stirrups and got ready to nod. This is when I pulled a rookie mistake. I was getting ready to nod and I was putting my rein hand out in front of me and I kind of pulled on the rein which caused the horse to rear up and try to jump out of the front of the chute. I stayed on him while he did this and thrashed around some more. When he calmed down I nodded and he came out of the chute pretty hard.  He was pretty quick and kicking hard. He angled across the arena. I felt really good on him and pretty aggressive. He came to the fence and made a tight circle to the left and the buzzer went off. I felt really good about the ride. The rein measurement was good, my saddle felt good and I was happy with the ride. I rode good enough and the horse bucked well enough for me to win the rodeo, which was a Blessing from the Lord!

Until Next time God Bless and be careful on the rodeo road!

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