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Far from the ranch

Local horse trainer competes for $50,000 on national TV

Jason Patrick and his two horses Poco and Moon, will appear on the County Music Television channel's show "America's Top Cowboy," on Saturday at 7 p.m.
Courtesy Photo

Jason Patrick laughed so hard that his face hurt during the filming of the TV show “America’s Top Cowboy.” Patrick, a Routt County resident, was a competitor on the show that will air at 7 p.m. Saturday on Country Music Television.

“I haven’t laughed that much in years,” said Patrick, a local horse trainer. “There were so many goofy contests, like cooking and talent competitions.”

The television network chose six cowboys out of 100 nominees to compete in various freestyle events and cowboy-related competitions during the course of five days on a ranch in Alpine, Texas. The winner will receive $50,000.



“We were filming for about 11 to 12 hours a day, and it’s only a two-hour special,” Patrick said. “It was really competitive. There were professional rodeo cowboys, two were ranch cowboys, and I was brought in as a horseman.”

Patrick grew up on large ranch in Yampa and his family always owned between 30 and 35 horses, he said.



“I’ve been training horses since I was 10. Now I train 15 to 20 young horses a year.”

Patrick took two of his horses, Moon and Poco, with him. All three had to adjust to the Texas climate.

“It was filmed in March and we still had snow up here,” Patrick said. “There we had to compete in 80 degrees. Me and my horses were sweating. It was brutal.”

Although Patrick still can’t reveal too much about what happened during the show, he said it was an eye-opening experience.

“It was just wild and like nothing I’ve done before,” he said. “You are being filmed and are under a stopwatch all the time. Millions of people are going to see everything you do – good or bad. It was pretty nerve-wracking.”


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