By: Brittany Bevis
It’s been a busy day on all fronts for riders of multiple disciplines at the All American Quarter Horse Congress; this was no exception for Brian Holmes and Rodger Call. While Holmes was driving Call’s horse, Stridin N Lucky Blue, to a win in the Jr. Pleasure Driving, Call was competing in the other pen with his horse, Go Big Sky, in Performance Halter Geldings.
They met in the middle when a spirited Holmes called out, “I won my class, did you win yours?!”
Holmes was in the driver’s seat of “Chester,” a five-year-old buckskin gelding by Sky Blue Walker, for Call and trainer Chuck Briggs.
“It’s funny because one of the first horses I ever drove was named Chester,” Holmes says. “This is the first buckskin I’ve ever driven. He’s pretty cool. He’s very distinctive.”
“They sent him to me this past winter, and I did the whole deal with ground driving and then teaching him how to pull a sled. It makes them obedient and submissive and it works out really well. They end up with a nice quiet horse that you can depend on.”
As far as driving horses go, Chester is still fairly green. He’s only been shown a handful of times this year after qualifying for the AQHA World Show.
“We got him qualified at the Red Bud at the end of May, and he’s only been shown a few times since then,” he says. “He’s still not seasoned. It will take a little while. Of course, we’ll have a lot of time to get him ready for the World Show.”
Call is entered on two different horses in the Amateur Pleasure Driving coming up later this week. It turns out he will have to choose between either the newly crowned Congress Champion or his old, dependable standby.
“Chester is the green one, and his older horse, Marcus, or Go Big Sky, is old Mr. Dependable,” he says. “We’re going to decide tonight, during the practice time, which one Rodger gets along with.”
“Chester has got a huge step, and he’s very laid back as well. He’s mellow and has a good mind for it. Even being so green at the event, he’s pretty cooperative. He probably doesn’t park gait as well as some of the western-type horses, but he’s got twice the road gait they do. He’s a really big imposing horse, and he’s a novelty because he’s a buckskin.”
Junior Pleasure Driving-
1- Stridin N Lucky Blue/Brian Holmes
2- Living Large/Kevin Dukes
3-Must Be A Hot One/Lori Walker
4-Lovin Honor/Lee Paul Shinn
5- Good Thing Im Hot/Jerry Erickson