Chris Ellsworth is a well-known trainer operating out of Rawking Horse Ranch in Briones. Chris spent most of his formative years working as a cattleman in Wyoming, Montana and South Dakota. Throughout that 30 year history, Chris worked with scores of fabulous horse trainers who taught him many things, but in the end, Chris realized it was the horse itself that was the greatest teacher. He began to realize he wanted to devote his life to making horses’ lives better, just as they had done for him. “I began to forge my own path, to follow where the horses led me. Letting go of what I thought I knew, learning to trust my instincts and turn in the direction the horses themselves were offering was one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. But now I consider this breaking away from all traditions to learn directly from horses to be my greatest accomplishment.” Chris has an affinity for reading horses and figuring out just what they are communicating to their human companions. By helping people to understand this, he can improve the relationship between horse and rider.
Xenophon was fortunate to have Chris come and donate his time and expertise to our Xenophon horses and horse handlers. Chris spent three hours on Sunday, August 26th up at the center, providing insight into our horses’ unique personalities. He quickly sized up our Xennies, identifying personality challenges. No one was surprised when he identified Kiwi as a dominant mare who has been “around the block”, and needed her handler to establish a leader position from the get go. He gave insight into GoGo, being an Arabian and having been bred to charge through Bedouin camps, and how to keep her calm. He also worked on getting her to be more accepting and less defensive of her herd mates. Chris’s calm demeanor and motivating attitude instilled confidence in the attendees and he provided wonderful tools that our handlers can use to help each horse be successful in its job. Everyone came away from the clinic with new skill sets and information. Thank you, Chris, for this incredible opportunity. Our horses will thank you, too!