Reserve Champion of Extreme Mustang Makeover
Colton Woods is a man on a mission. A mission to make this world a better place for horses and riders. Considering that he is just 25 years old, Colton exhibits enviable clarity of thought. For him legacy is the most important thing. He wants to help as many horses and people as he can to achieve their goals and further their knowledge.He is doing all this in order to fulfill his ultimate aim and leave the equine industry in a better place after he is gone.
Talking about his business Colton adds " My business, "Colton Woods Horsemanship's" mission is to 'Educate Horses and People with a Lifetime in Mind.' From training horses to teaching clinics and providing training videos to our followers, my business and what my business does is truly one of my greatest passions, hobbies and interest." No wonder that he conducts a lot of horsemanship clinics, train a variety of horses from thoroughbreds to quarter horses, hunters, jumpers and dressage horses. As a matter of fact, he also has an emerging breeding program to offer a working student program for those seeking experience at a top end facility.
Extreme Mustang Makeover
While Colton Woods was busy training and teaching he stumbled upon a program which has the same
philosophical foundation - welfare of horses. Exceeding population of wild mustang has always been a complicated problem in US. As per National Geographic story legally there should be only 27,000 wild horses and burros for “thriving natural ecological balance” in the area which has exceeded to 75,000. There are another 45,000 in government holding pens, gathered to prevent overgrazing, that are costing the agency nearly $50 million annually. The ecological consequences of mismanagement are staggering.
In an attempt to contribute more light than heat to the discussion, Mustang Heritage foundation took the initiative to motivate people to adopt these wild mustangs. The obvious hurdle ie the user friendliness of these wild horses was addressed by throwing a unique competition for all worthy trainers - " The Extreme Mustang Makeover" . With approximately 100 days to tame a wild horse from wild to mild, trainers from across America take the challenge of competing with an American Mustang at Extreme Mustang Makeover events in different U.S. cities. Trainers compete for cash and prizes while displaying the trainability of American Mustangs in hope of finding a suitable adopter or purchaser. The Mustang Heritage Foundation created the Extreme Mustang Makeover event in order to recognize and highlight the value of mustangs through a national training competition that showcases the beauty, versatility and trainability of the rugged horses. After being selected, a trainer picks up an American Mustang that has been virtually untouched by human and he has approximately 100 days to gentle, halter break and saddle train, build trust and develop a relationship with the horse to compete and win.
Colton Woods found the overall package difficult to resist and before he knew he was already competing for the 2018 show. EMM came into his life as a game changer. Not only as a rider but also as a human. He recalls," The challenge of taking a wild Mustang from completely wild to trained and competing in 100 days was enticing alone. However the journey of challenging my knowledge, skills, flexibility and taking on the time commitment it takes to help a horse make that transformation was a large part of why I wanted to compete in the EMM. I had 3 goals when it came to the competition. Firstly to help a horse get out of holding and find it's forever home. We were blessed to accomplish this and my horse found a phenomenal home after the competition. Second was to challenge and further my horse training skills and knowledge. Lastly to have fun, meet new people and do my absolute best. Overall it was super successful adventure for us."
"We finished as Reserve Champions overall, the horse went to a great home and we had an absolute blast learning from the process of training this horse in 100 days and competing with her at the Kentucky Horse Park. This was also my first time showing a horse ever so I certainly learned a lot on that front as well."
Colton is also full of praises for the community of people surrounding the EMM. As per him, one of the biggest deterrents to showing horses is the cut throat atmosphere, but at the EMM events you are embraced by a supportive community of people that are there to help you while competing right along side of you.