An Agua Dulce horse trainer has been selected to compete for over $20,000 at the Arizona Extreme Mustang Makeover which will be held later this year at the Horseshoe Park and Equestrian Centre in Queen Creek.
The event will be held April 22 to 23, 2016, and trainers will have only about 100 days to gentle a randomly assigned wild horse they will pick up in January.
“I run my training stables, Lexi K Training Stables, an onsite and offsite training and boarding facility.” said Alexis Kiefer, owner and operator at Lexi K Training Stables. “Training horses has been my passion and dream since I was a little girl. I made that dream come true about 11 years ago.”
“I grew up in a training barn where I got my first horse, a purebred 3-year-old Arabian mare, at age 11. The trainers at the ranch thought I was crazy when I was little because I would swing my leg over anything so then they started passing the crazy ones over to me to ride it out of them and then I moved on to learning to start a horse at age 13. I now own 5 horses, two of which I took because they were both kicked out of handfuls of training barns because they were dangerous or untrainable, some people have even said they should be put down. I believe those horses were meant to be with me. They do anything and everything I ask them to without hesitation. Training horses is just about all of my life,” she said.
The purpose of the competition is to showcase the beauty, versatility and trainability of these rugged horses that roam freely on public lands throughout the West, where they are protected by the BLM under federal law. The BLM periodically removes excess animals from the range to ensure herd health and protect rangeland resources. Thousands of the removed animals are then made available each year to the public for adoption. Over 6,200 Mustangs have been adopted through Mustang Heritage Foundation events and programs since 2007.
The Mustangs competing in the Extreme Mustang Makeover challenge are geldings, and the horses, which were virtually untouched prior to the January pick-up, will compete in Gonzales in March. The trainers and Mustangs will compete in a series of classes that will showcase their new skills. The horses will compete in handling and conditioning, a pattern class and a combined leading and riding class. The top-10 competitors will then compete in the freestyle finals. Tickets and event information about the Arizona Extreme Mustang Makeover are available here.
Mustangs competing in the Extreme Mustang Makeover will be available for adoption through an adoption auction on April 23. Adoption fees will be set by competitive bid. To qualify to adopt, individuals must be at least 18 with no record of animal abuse. In addition, adopters must have suitable facilities and can adopt no more than four animals. Adoption applications will be approved on site by the Bureau of Land Management during the event.
The Extreme Mustang Makeovers are made possible through a partnership with the Bureau of Land Management and the generosity of sponsors Western Horseman, Ram Rodeo, Vetericyn, Gist Silversmiths, Martin Saddlery and Classic Equine, Resistol, RIDE TV and the North American Mustang Association and Registry.
“I love being able to help these incredible animals, aside from that I love spending time with my family and boyfriend. I love camping, hiking, off-roading and pretty much anything that entails adventure,” said Kiefer.
About the Mustang Heritage Foundation
The Mustang Heritage Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) public, charitable, nonprofit organization dedicated to facilitating successful adoptions for America’s excess mustangs and burros. Extreme Mustang Makeovers are designed to showcase the recognized value of Mustangs through a national training competition. The Mustang Heritage Foundation is celebrating the 10th Anniversary of the Extreme Mustang Makeover in 2016 with 10 national event stops! Train, adopt or attend to show your support for the American Mustang. For more information, visit http://www.mustangheritagefoundation.org.
About the Bureau of Land Management
Since 1971, when Congress passed the Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act, the BLM has successfully placed over 235,000 wild horses and burros into private care. The BLM manages more than 245 million acres of public land, the most of any Federal agency. This land, known as the National System of Public Lands, is primarily located in 10 Western states, including Alaska. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. The BLM’s mission is to manage and conserve the public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations under our mandate of multiple-use and sustained yield. In Fiscal Year 2014, the BLM generated $5.2 billion in receipts from public lands. For more information, visit blm.gov.
2016 Extreme Mustang Makeover Schedule
March 11-12 Gonzales, LA
April 22-23 Queen Creek, AZ
May 6-7 Jacksonville, FL
May 20-21 Ft. Collins, CO
June 18-19 Reno, NV
July 14-16 Sedalia, MO
July 29-30 Nampa, ID
August 5-6 Topsfield, MA
August 25-27 Virginia Horse Center
September 15-17 Fort Worth, TX