Skyline Eventing Park held an Extreme Horseman’s Challenge in late September as a fundraiser for its new recognized horse trials in Mount Pleasant, Utah, giving local riders and eventers a sneak peek of not only the park, but the insanity of the sport.
While many obstacles were outside the confines of eventing, such as a tire pull and getting your horse through a “car wash” scenario, the course also included some of the most intimidating elements of a cross country course, including banks and water obstacles.
Organizers included the banks in and out of the water for the challenge, which were used on the Training level course at this past weekend’s recognized horse trials (which we heard was a huge success!). Amusingly, it seemed that only the eventers were intimidated by this.
“The problem is, I know too much,” said competitor and eventer Carrie Matteson. “In this case, ignorance is bliss!”
Ultimately, the slight intimidation factor of jumping up a level or two for one day did not stop Carrie from hailing a cab like a pro.
And the cowboys weren’t afraid to test the trend out themselves, though not every pair had the same luck, and many opted to enter the water from a less tricky spot after a few attempts.
Then, there were a few pairs that just surprised the chaps off of everybody, such as the sequence from this little cow-cuttin’-quarter-horse-turned-tight-kneed jumper.
With an equal number of eventing questions and trail obstacles, the trophy buckle was anyone’s game, and there were some lightning fast rounds by all types of horsemen at the top. But local Preliminary eventer and equine veterinarian Summer Peterson claimed the top prize.
“This event turned out to be a RIOT!!! Both Western & English riders loved it,” organizers announced on their Facebook page. “Everybody is requesting more Challenge races so we will do several a year.”
Cowboys will definitely be seeking revenge at the next event, and they may just even the score. And in the meantime, the American West may have gained some new eventing fans and respect in the process.
The original version of this post appeared on Horse Nation. Click here to see more photos from the Extreme Horseman’s Challenge. EN recommends always wearing a helmet while mounted.