Saskatchewan Equine Expo

First time competitor, Seth Abramson, winner of the Naeric Trainer’s challenge. Photo by Gord Waldner.

Congratulations to Seth Abramson, the winner of the 5th annual Saskatchewan Equine Expo Trainer’s Challenge.

The Naeric Trainer’s Challenge drew large crowds for every performance and on Sunday evening Seth Abrahamson, from Broderick, Sask., was named the winner. Seth was presented with a beautiful handmade buckle by Bill Wilm from St. Brieux, Sask.

The 24-year-old trainer grew up on a 300-head cow-calf family farm south of Saskatoon where the cattle work is done from horseback. He got his first client before he was out of school, and his training business has grown through word of mouth. He still works the farm alongside the training, and he shows in working cowhorse competitions. This was his first time competing in a Trainer’s Challenge.

“The main approach for me is simple but hard — you have to read your stock. That simply means you have to understand the responses. Some horses will flee, some will be aggressive and on and on, so it’s my job to read that before it happens. I have to find that line where they’ll accept me and where they won’t and then build on it so they are more comfortable with me in time,” he said.

Slade Mutton of Frobisher, Sask., was the runner up. It was also his first time competing in a Challenge. The ranch-raised 24-year-old started his training career at 18, working for a trainer in Oklahoma, then
Texas. He now trains around home and rides community pasture.

“It gets my horses doing something different all the time,” Mutton says. “Going around in a circle and working in an arena to me doesn’t get them totally broke. There’s lots of horses out there that have won a lot of money that you can’t even take outside of an arena. In my mind you want them to be versatile.”

The third invited trainer, Kateri Cowley of Exshaw, Alta., had to bow out due to illness.