Colt Starting Challenge USA

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Central States Fairground
James Kjerstad Event Center, 
800 San Francisco Street, Rapid City SD
 Jan 26, 27 & 22, 2017
After paying entry for the Stock Show, our event is free

- 6 ROUND PENS.....

The Black Hills Stock Show Colt Starting Challenge will have 6 Contestants who will start, gentle and ride 6 unbroke horses in just 
a few hours. These horses have never been saddled, bridled, nor ridden, however they are halter broke. 

On Friday night at 7 pm, come and watch all 6 Natural Horsemanship Trainers work their horses at the same time. They will have 2 one hour sessions to work with their horse in their round pen with a 10 minute break in between. Each Trainer will explain to the audience, one at a time, what they are doing and why as they work with their horse.

On Saturday at 7 pm, all 6 Trainers continue their work with their horses in the round pens. Some will choose to leave the round pens and ride their horse in the arena as they prepare their horses for the obstacle course. They will all have two 45 minute sessions to work with their horse, with a 10 minute break in between. 

Then at on Sunday at 7 pm, all 6 Trainers will each have 10 minutes to ride their horse thru the obstacle course, one at a time. The Judges decide the Winner and a Buckle is awarded. 

Contestants Entered for
The Black Hills Stock Show
Colt Starting Challenge

1.  Robert Carsel (Iowa)

2. Micah Brehm (Iowa)

3. Nate Horner (N. Dakota)

4. Claude Roebuck (S. Dakota)

5. Chance Vomacka (S. Dakota)

6. Thomas Smittle (S. Dakota)
Biography and Contact Information of 
Contestants for the Black Hills Stock Show 
Colt Starting Challenge 

I am from South Dakota and have had the opportunity to train for lots of different people all over.  I've been training horses for 15 years and have been around horses my whole life. 

I have qualified for the Colt Starting Challenge USA National Finals Championship in Las Vegas in 2015. 

My main goal is to help horse people understand horses better as well as training horses to be suited for every rider.  
[email protected]
$150 Contestant Entry Fee 
for Black Hills Stock Show Colt Starting Challenge

Non refundable and non changeable to another event
I work with horses the way I would like to be worked with If I was that horse”. I enjoy and love fact that I get to spend as much time as I do riding all kinds of horses and talking to all kinds of people. 

What I love the most is having the opportunity to make every horse a winner, regardless of its background. That’s the most important thing I look for when I approach a horse.

My family and I live a pretty simple life on our small horse ranch in Western Iowa where I spend most of my time riding horses for the public when I am not working as a Structural Engineer in Omaha Nebraska.
[email protected]
Robert Carsel is currently located in Central Iowa and will soon be relocating back home to Southern Missouri. 

I have been working with horses my whole life and starting colts since I was 13, I’m a farrier full time and now ride colts part time. I concentrate on a very solid foundation from groundwork through all stages of training to accomplish a soft, responsive, and willing horse that can go any direction or discipline. 

If you would like to see some of my work or horses I’ve trained please go visit Robert Carsel Colt Starting on Facebook. Give me a call anytime.
[email protected]
Claude Roebuck was the winner of the 2008 Colt Starting Challenge held in Sioux Falls, SD. His program has a few basic principles which contributed to the win, such as: each horse is an individual, and each individual has a different personality, ability and learning curve. Every contact an individual horse has with their handler leaves an impression on him, and helps form his training level. 

With this in mind, Western Working Horse offers a complete training program for your horse based on sound and proven principles, yet tailored to the individual horse. Whether your horse has never been touched, or is a seasoned horse needing a refresher on his skills, we can take him to the next level of training. All breeds are welcome. Please contact us for pricing and further information about how we can help your horse reach his full potential.

You can check out my web site at

I grew up with a passion for horses. I began starting colts in my teenage years and it quickly became a small business for me. I saturated myself with as much information as I could pertaining to natural horsemanship methods. I started to realize the importance of a good foundation in a young horse.  

I live on the ranch I grew up on in south central North Dakota with my wife Lindsey and our daughter Karsyn Rose. We have a cow/calf operation and always seem to own 10 to 12 head of horses. We normally buy young colts for prospects, train them on the ranch and start them down the rode of becoming rope or barrel racing horses. Lindsey is an Equine Veterinarian, and I am an AFA Certified Farrier. In addition to our ranch and vet clinic responsibilities, I also start a few colts for clients throughout the winter months.  

Whether I am putting the first ride on a young colt, or trimming a baby for the first time, I try to do my best to leave the horse with a more positive impression of humans. Preparation has become the underlying theme in my colt starting program. Horses are more likely to accept uncomfortable circumstances if they have been properly prepared to encounter them. It is my desire to continue to better my horsemanship to the level that every horse will see me not as just a human, but as a teammate.

[email protected]
[email protected]

I began to gentle and saddle-start mustangs at the Saddle Horse Training Program at Stewart Conservation Camp Carson City, NV in 2009, under the tutelage of Hank Curry. Aside from learning the skill of gentling wild horses, Thomas learned many important life skills; responsibility, consistency, congruence of thoughts, feelings and actions, connection over control and honest and respectful communication. 

Thomas currently is a HIP/HIGH clinician and horse trainer for Lifesavers Wild Horse Rescue teaching these important skills to men/women combat Veterans that suffer with PTSD, TBI, Drug and Alcohol Dependency. Thomas believes that mustangs are an excellent partner in helping those that suffer the after effects of various types of trauma.  

Thomas was also asked to join the Red Horse Nation staff to help provide Horse Inspired Growth and Healing workshops for Native Youth. He is now been promoted to Executive Director of Red Horse Nation. Thomas also conducts Wild Horses and Warriors Retreat for veterans. 

Thomas recently moved to Custer, SD from Nevada and was encouraged by his wife, who is an equine veterinarian, to join the challenge to demonstrate his brand of natural horsemanship and get involved in the local equine community.

[email protected]