2015 - Lord Sterling Cup, Miniature Horse Show, Charlene Gale
2015 - Lord Sterling Cup, Miniature Horse Show, Charlene Gale

Gale Takes Lord Sterling Cup in Miniature Horse Show

Calgary – Since 1992, the culminating event in the Canadian National Miniature Horse Show at the Calgary Stampede has been the competition for the Lord Sterling Cup. After this year, of the 24 winner’s plaques on the handsome silver trophy, 16 will have the name of the Circle J Ranch engraved on them. Last year’s winning team, known as Duke and Zach, were driven to victory by Charlene Gale again this year.

“They did very well today,” Gale said. “I did a few things wrong. I would find myself in very poor form and they were still doing what they were supposed to do. They definitely carried me. They’re good boys.” The two horses on her winning team are half-brothers, Gale said, and are definitely not youngsters. Duke is 16 and Zach is 20. “They have more experience. They’ve been around a lot and they’ve been here a lot.”

Miniature Horses are a separate breed, not tiny versions of other breeds.  The little beauties are descended from the pit ponies that were used in mines, deliberately bred to be small to fit into the narrow confines of the mines of a couple of centuries ago.  Today’s Miniatures are somewhat different from their ancestor, since the original pit ponies were a much stockier horse, almost like a miniature heavy horse.  Modern-day Miniature Horses are shown in different ways, some are led around obstacles and over jumps, while others pull scale carts and wagons.

In the Lord Sterling Cup competition, teams must pull a four-wheeled wagon, changing their pace on command, backing up the wagon and swinging from side to side before driving in a figure eight pattern. The required routine is intended to prove a team has the skills to perform tasks that would be necessary for a working draft team.

“The dirt is very heavy in here and the wagons are heavy,” Gale pointed out. “I train them on grass in a pasture. It was a tough workout for them. It’s never a foregone conclusion. It’s a challenge for me to keep calm and do it right, so they can do it right.”

Winner of the prestigious title of Canadian National Supreme Halter Horse Champion is First Night Striders Black Satin, owned by Holly Whyte of Tomahawk, AB.

The Stampede’s 35th Canadian National Miniature Horse Show attracted an excellent entry of 87 horses from 32 exhibitors. Competitions in a variety of classes took place on Tuesday, July 7th, Wednesday, July 8th and Thursday, July 9th in the Agrium Western Event Centre and Northern Lights Arena.

Calgary Stampede Canadian National Miniature Horse Show Results:

Multiple Hitch Lord Sterling Cup

Grand Champion –   Circle J Zachary & Circle J Dezigner Genes – Charlene Gale, Cochrane, AB    

Reserve Champion –  4 Stars Tuffy Sidekick & Rocking Horse Two Steppin Tuff – Stacey Skyrpan, Lac La Biche, AB

Canadian National Supreme Halter Horse Champion

1st –  First Knight Striders Black Satin – Holly Whyte, Tomahawk, AB

Canadian National Single Pleasure Driving Champion

1st -  Samis Quiz Kid – Sarah Hunter, Strathmore, AB

2nd –  Lucky Four Andy’s Colorcard – Dawn Labine, Millet, AB 

Canadian National Senior Mare Champion

1st -  First Knight Striders Black Satin – Holly Whyte, Tomahawk, AB

2nd -  Rainbow Ridge Hawk’s Boxa Chocolates – Colin Brown, Waskatenau, AB

Canadian National Roadster Champion

1st -  Lombards Canadian Maid – Pip Breckon, Shawinigan, BC

2nd –  Sami’s Blushing Bay – Pip Breckon, Shawinigan, BC

Canadian National Junior Stallion Champion

1st -  First Knight’s Hell or High Water – Holly Whyte, Tomahawk, AB

2nd – Tibbs Tango After Dark – Sarah Hunter, Strathmore, AB        

Canadian National Senior Stallion Champion

1st -  Lucky Four Santafe Beau Bey – Kaycee Lunde, Airdrie, AB

2nd -  San Sujo’s Midnight Wrangler – Lena McMurtry, Saanichton, BC         

Canadian National Senior Gelding Champion

1st -  Double D Shadow Dancer – Holly Whyte, Tomahawk, AB        

2nd –  San Sujo’s Midnight Butero – Lena McMurtry, Saanichton, BC

Canadian National Junior Mare Champion

1st -  Ammaretto Beaullisima – Sarah Hunter, Strathmore, AB         

2nd - Tapestry’s Triple Shot Expresso, Sarah Hunter, Strathmore, AB

Canadian National Junior Gelding Champion

1st - LM Idols Revelation Hawk – Tracy Rouleau, Calgary, AB

2nd -  Ramblin Ranch King of the Road – Christine Tilleman, Airdrie, AB


About the Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede celebrates the people, the animals, the land, the traditions and the values that make up the unique spirit of the west. The Calgary Stampede contributes to the quality of life in Calgary and southern Alberta through our world-renowned 10-day Stampede, year-round facilities, western events and several youth and agriculture programs. Exemplifying the theme We’re Greatest Together, we are a volunteer-supported, not-for-profit community organization that preserves and celebrates our western heritage, cultures and community spirit. All revenue is reinvested into Calgary Stampede programs and facilities.


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Nicole Henson                                                 Kristin Dennett
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