Saddle up and buckle down, because the Legends of Ranching performance horse sale is more than just an auction for consigned horses. Colorado State University’s equine science students get the hands-on experience of personally training these horses by caring and raising them in time for the sale.
The Legends of Ranching sale is Saturday at CSU’s Equine Sciences Center. A preview of the sale will begin at 9 a.m., and the auction will begin at 1 p.m.
Taylor Randall, teaching assistant and senior equine science major at CSU, has been involved in the sale since her sophomore year. This year is her third year training a horse for the sale.
“We get the horses in September, and start with ground work, such as getting them used to wearing saddles (and) teaching them different cues,” Randall said. “We basically want to get them used to the feeling of us getting on their backs. We also work on teaching them different maneuvers such as steering and stopping.”
According to Randall, the sale is also an opportunity for students to network and connect with potential employers and consignors.
“It’s more than just an auction,” Randall said. “If you go out in the industry, it’s not easy to find someone who’s just going to let you train their horse. This sale is a really great opportunity for students to gain real-world experience within the field.”
Chelsea Christoffersen, a senior equine science major at CSU, also trained a horse for the sale. According to Christoffersen, this is her first year being involved in the sale.
“Since this was my first year, I learned so much,” Christoffersen said. “My horse taught me more than any textbook or lecture hall ever could have. My horse has absolutely taken my breath away with how far she has come and how fun it was to work with her. You could definitely said I am attached and plan to bid on her this coming Saturday.”
Sylvia Rogan, a senior equine science major at CSU, is involved in the sale management class, which handles more of the logistics and technicalities of the sale.
“I’m mostly excited about learning more about an industry that I originally came into knowing nothing about,” Rogan said. “That’s the whole goal of the program. They want to take people, like me, who know nothing about the Quarter Horse world, and by the end of the sale, know enough about how the sale works. Therefore, we could go out into the real world and recreate what we helped with during the sale.”
According to Rogan, the overall goal of this year’s sale is to build the reputation of a high quality program that educates students to train horses, as well as to create revenue and maintain connections within the equine industry.
Collegian Reporter Amanda Thompson can be reached at email@example.com or @amanduhh3003.