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CNN - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:40
Categories: National News

Trainer brings her passion to work

Twisted Rodeo - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:30
Michelle Gilles works with a young roan horse during a recent Colt Starting Challenge USA event in Cortez, Colo. Gilles has utilized techniques she gathered in the competitions to aid in her training business, and she continues to compete. (COLT STARTING CHALLENGE USA PHOTO)

Michelle Gilles works with a young roan horse during a recent Colt Starting Challenge USA event in Cortez, Colo. Gilles has utilized techniques she gathered in the competitions to aid in her training business, and she continues to compete. (COLT STARTING CHALLENGE USA PHOTO)

GARDEN CITY, Kan. – Michelle Gilles is a horse trainer and a competitor.

She also is a wife and mother, and no matter where she goes, she does so with her family involved. Whether it’s working her business at their home near Lubbock, Texas, or on the road at competitions, it’s certainly family time.

“A family that works together, plays together and stays together,” said Gilles, owner of Michelle Gilles Horsemanship. “Everywhere I go, it’s me, my husband and kids.”

That works just fine. By combining family, work and competition, the native Californian is living her perfect life. That includes her ventures for Extreme Mustang Makeover events, reining contests and competing in the Colt Starting Challenge USA, the latter of which showcases trainers’ work with young horses.

In fact, Gilles will be part of the next challenge, set for 6-9 p.m. Friday, Sept. 5, and 5-9:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 6, inside the Bronc Buster Horse Palace at the Finney County Fairgrounds in Garden City.

“The Colt Starting Challenge is a really great way to further your education with horses,” Gilles said. “It makes you have to learn who you truly are, because you are putting a lot of training in such a short period of time. You have to know your stuff.”

While she utilizes the challenges for self-training, Gilles’ true competitive nature comes out in full force when it’s time to enter the arena.

“The Colt Starting pen shows you where your holes are and where you have to go back and fix,” she said. “I do it to better myself and hopefully educate the public that there’s a new way of doing things.”

The Colt Starting Challenge focuses on natural horsemanship, which better utilizes a horse’s natural instincts. The techniques used are a far cry from what was done a generation ago and what many have seen regarding breaking horses on TV and in the movies.

The competitions are the brain child of trainer and horseman Russell Beatty. In the two-day challenges, trainers are matched via random draw to horses that have had limited handling; there has been no saddle nor bridle ever on the animal. To close out the challenge, trainers take their hoses through a variety of obstacles in order to show how far their animals have come in a short amount of time.

“I’ve been watching different competitions, and this was interesting because I am really good at getting these young ones going, and I enjoy getting the colts started,” Gilles said. “I got started by watching them, and I’ve already been to four. I watched Russell, and I really liked the sportsmanship and that with his competitions, it’s all about the horse.

“If you get in a bind in your pen and need help, another competitor can come in and help you. That’s an awesome part of the competition.”

As a trainer, she has taken a lot from the Colt Starting Challenges. In fact, some of the lessons learned have enabled Gilles to upgrade the techniques she utilizes in her home practice.

“I’m much quicker and more aggressive,” she said. “When I would get a green horse before, I would go slower and be methodical in the process. Now I have the tools to speed up the process of my training. Ideally the public wants a horst that’s past green broke in less than 30 days.

“Now I’m able to give a much better product to the horse community in a short amount of time.”

While trainers in the Colt Starting Challenge utilize the same philosophy, they go about their work using a variety of methods. For Gilles, adapting along the way is outstanding for her business.

“I was raised around horses my whole life,” Gilles said, noting that she began focusing on training while in college. “I started taking equine science classes. That’s where I started learning about starting colts.

“I fell in love with it. Horses are honest and pure, and they get out of it what you put into it. Horses have no bad intentions. What you give that horse, they give right back to you. The horse is really a reflection of who you are.”

Gilles’ passion is evident in everything she does, and she’s excited to share it through the Colt Starting Challenge USA.

Categories: Twisted Rodeo

Search intensifies for American missing in Israel

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:26
Israeli police have stepped up their search for a New Jersey man who went missing while hiking in a forest outside Jerusalem.
Categories: International News

2 beheaded during Brazil prison riots

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:18
Brazilian authorities say they have begun transferring inmates from a prison in the southern city of Cascavel after riots inside turned deadly -- with two inmates decapitated and two thrown off the roof of a cell block.
Categories: International News

Amazon is eating Best Buy's lunch

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 11:09
Read full story for latest details.

Don't wait! Trade in your old iPhone now

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:59
Read full story for latest details.

Home prices rising, but slowly

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:56
Home prices are still rising, but the pace of increases is definitely slowing.

LZ: Can peace come to Ferguson?

CNN - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:55
LZ Granderson says a funeral for Michael Brown won't resolve longstanding police targeting and disenfranchisement of the black community in Ferguson, Missouri. But voting will.
Categories: National News

Turner Broadcasting offers voluntary buyouts

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:41
Read full story for latest details.

Does Napa quake portend 'Big One'?

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:39
Relax. This quake wasn't a sign that the dreaded "Big One" is coming -- at least not yet.
Categories: International News

Heating up: Burger King is latest in M&A frenzy

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:29
The summer might be winding down, but the mergers and acquisitions market is still heating up, and investors are loving it.

Rush hour car bombing in Baghdad

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:27
A car bomb exploded in eastern Baghdad on Tuesday, killing 10 people and wounding 34 others, police said.
Categories: International News

China seizes 30,000 tons of this

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:24
In the latest stomach-churning food scandal to hit China, authorities have seized over 30,000 tons of chicken feet contaminated with hydrogen peroxide, according to state media.
Categories: International News

What is ISIS' Achilles' heel?

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:23
Surprise, mobility and the merciless treatment of opponents: the blueprint of the Islamic State in Syria and Iraq as it has gobbled up territory in both Syria and Iraq over the past few months. But as its adversaries regroup, ISIS -- which now calls itself the Islamic State -- may begin to suffer setbacks on the battlefield, according to a new analysis of its capabilities and tactics.
Categories: International News

Ban on indoor e-cigarette smoking sought

Business News - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:21
Read full story for latest details.

Great White shark off Mass. beach

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:20
More than 1,000 people were pulled out of the water and off the beach Monday after a great white shark was spotted off the coast of Duxbury, Massachusetts.
Categories: International News

Thousands starved, beaten in risky boat escape from Myanmar

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:15
Tens of thousands of people are fleeing violence in Myanmar only to be robbed, beaten and starved on boats helmed by human traffickers, according to a new report from the United Nations Refugee Agency.
Categories: International News

Man buys Lincoln document for $50

CNN - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:15
A trading store owner says he bought a document with Abraham Lincoln's signature on it for $50. KBAK reports.
Categories: National News

Russian soldiers detained in Ukraine

CNN World - Tue, 08/26/2014 - 10:11
Ukraine's Security Service says 10 Russian soldiers were detained in Ukraine, amid tensions over the conflict between Ukrainian forces and pro-Russian rebels.
Categories: International News
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