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The Verde Independent | Cottonwood, Arizona

home : latest news : local May 24, 2016

4/25/2013 2:05:00 PM
Lanny Leach claims top honors in Verde Valley Equine Festival Arizona Horseman's Challenge

After a thrilling three-day colt training competition, a winner has emerged from the first annual Arizona Horseman's Challenge.

Congratulations to first place winner Lanny Leach, representing Pima County. Reserve Champion was awarded to Cornville's own Travis Lyons. The equally skilled runners up included Ty Jones of Flagstaff, Jeremy Cluff of Queen Creek, and Ben Monarque of Desert Hills. The greatly attended event was a big part of the 3-day Verde Valley Equine Festival, produced by the Rio Verde Roverettes, with a sensational lineup of clinicians, entertaining equine exposes, and vendors from a variety of equestrian professionals and specialists.

The Arizona Horseman's Challenge began on April 19, opening day, with each horse trainer choosing a young, barely halter-able horse, contributed by Lazy M Ranches. They had a mere three days to train, in only two-hour intervals, and with only a few bare basics to use as training tools. The crowd was able to witness each contender and their training methods daily, culminating to the final showing of trainer negotiating his choice colt through a creatively, strategic course in the show arena. From finesse to finale, these prized Arizona professionals each served to entertain as well as educate, with first class talent and unfailing integrity.

To submit your nomination for the Arizona Horseman's Challenge 2014, go to or call program director Jody Swink at (602) 330-4917.

Taylor Waste

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