2019 MN Horse Expo Speakers/Demos
Schedule is subject to change
Northern Lights Versatility Ranch Horse with Russ Ratkowski
Northern Lights Versatility Ranch
Horse Association is the local affiliate of the National Versatility Ranch
Horse Association. The world of “versatility” is available to all breeds
and all skill levels from novice up through the open division. We provide a
program and place for showcasing the versatility of a horse and rider by
requiring participation in all five classes. Two of the classes include
handling cattle (cutting, boxing, fencing, circling or roping) and two
performance classes (ranch riding, ranch trail) and a final in Conformation
class (form to function conformation). You spend the weekend on your horse
in a learning environment. You participate in an all-day clinic on the
first day, followed by a low-key schooling competition on the second day.
Come see what all the excitement is about with the “versatility” events by
joining Northern Lights Versatility Ranch Association! We will be
demonstrating and explaining each of our five classes focusing on the
novice/beginner rider/horse team. We are excited to introduce you to
Russ Ratkowski has been an NLVRHA
certified clinician/judge for many years.
As an National Reining Horse Association professional, Russ enjoys training
reining horses at his full-time training operation. Russ and his wife,
professional barrel racer, Nicole Ratkowski, own and operate RNR
Performance Horses, located in Cloquet, Minnesota. Russ is a multi-time
NRHA/NCHRA Champion and Reserve Champion. He graduated from the University
of Tennessee at Martin with a Bachelor of Science in Agriculture – Emphasis
in Animal Science. He has been training horses and assisting riders
learning the art and science that make up the five components of NVRHA
events for many years. As an NVRHA certified clinician/Judge he guides
riders of all levels to improve their skills in a patient and supportive
manner. RNR Performance Horses offers training and coaching specializing in
reining and barrel racing.
Friday April 26
Noon-1:30 Compeer Arena
Intro to Versatiity Ranch Horse – Working Ranch Horse
Ranch Horse performs a reining pattern and cow work (boxing, fencing,
circling/roping). We will discuss the basic skills you need to develop on
your horse to build upon as you progress through the reining maneuvers.
This demonstration will also teach you how to introduce your horse to cow
work and how to maintain control of your cow as you work it in the boxing
and down the fence. We will also touch on how to practice when you do not
have access to cows.
Saturday April 27
Noon-1:00 Compeer Arena
Intro to Versatility Ranch Horse - Ranch Cutting
Learn the basics of ranch cutting including herd work, how to cut a cow and how to work a cow. Never seen a cow before? We will show you how to introduce your horse to a cow. This demonstration will teach you exercises to do with your horse, with and without cows, that will develop the skills necesssary for a successful cutting run!
Sunday, April 28
11:00-Noon Compeer Arena
Intro to Versatility Ranch Horse - Ranch Trail, Ranch Riding & Ranch Conformation
Learn skills that will help your horse become more confident with trail obstacles. In ranch riding, learn how to develop a smooth transition between a walk, trot & lope. You will also learn rope handling skills and ways to practice your roping when you don't have access to cows. For ranch conformation, we will show you how to be successful in the class with at home exercises.
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