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Truco Trick Riders to fearlessly perform this summer

The five young women who comprise the Truco Trick Riders group won’t let a few bruises get in their way as they fearlessly perform riding tricks for audiences this spring and summer.

WEYBURN – The five young women who comprise the Truco Trick Riders group won’t let a few bruises get in their way as they fearlessly perform their riding tricks for audiences this coming spring and summer, starting in Brandon, Man.

The Truco Trick Riders practice at the King farm near Corning, including Charlize Hallberg of Weyburn (the newest member), Shayda King, Bailey Steeves and Jordanna White, both of Carnduff, and Kyla Dyer of Oxbow. On the day of the interview, two former members of the “Calamity Cowgirls” trick riders from Estevan, Marcie LeBlanc and Cashlyn Krecklau, were on hand to work with the girls on their tricks.

Each of the Truco girls described how they got into trick riding, as an outgrowth of their love of riding horses.

Shayda, whose home farm is the group’s training base, began at the age of 10.

“When I was little, I would start climbing all over my horse and stuff, then I seen people who had done trick riding. I had always wanted to do it. My mom and dad got me the equipment and away we went,” said Shayda.

Bailey first started riding horses when she was five, and became interested in being a trick rider after attending a clinic.

“I found I really loved it, so I started trick riding,” she said.

Charlize, 19, has ridden horses since she was two, and has taken riding lessons since she was seven. She has often been seen at local competitions, such as barrel racing or in horse shows, but has felt the need for something more.

“I asked Tammy King, how do I get into trick riding? They had an extra saddle, and after I went to a practice, here I am,” she said, adding she bought her own saddle and has been practicing now for five months.

“I’ve been riding my whole life, and I never sat quite right in the saddle. I was always upside down or backwards. I went to a few clinics when I was little … then I came to one at Shayda’s house, and it just took off from there,” said Jordanna, who has been trick riding for a couple of years now.

Kyla has been riding horses since she was six, and started trick riding two years ago. She had to take last year off, however, to get a bone marrow transplant, as she has severe aplastic anemia. She is just now getting back into practicing for trick riding.

Shayda, Bailey and Jordanna performed at 12 locations for two-day shows, for a total of 24 performances, last year while Kyla took time off for her treatments. The shows were in Northern Manitoba and Saskatchewan, at Saskatoon as well as closer shows in Bengough and Strasbourg, both of which gave the girls standing invitations to come back this year.

Charlize is a second-year nursing student at Sask Polytech in Saskatoon, and is greatly looking forward to joining the team at the Royal Manitoba Winter Fair, slated for March 25-30 in Brandon, Man.

The team is scheduled to do five evening performances during that week, plus they will be doing four 30-minute talks for anyone interested in trick riding. Shayda noted they will be teaching some of the basic tricks and safety precautions for doing trick rides.

“We might show a few tricks and stuff,” she added.

“It’s going to be so much fun,” said Charlize.

Meanwhile, their schedule for the summer is beginning to fill up as various rodeos have invited them to attend or are signing contracts.

Asked about the training process, the girls said it can be very hard on their bodies.

“You have to be pretty tough, you get banged up pretty bad,” said Charlize. “After I was in training for the first time, when I got home my legs were purple. There was no skin left. I burned the skin off the back of my leg.”

Jordanna added, “It takes a lot of hard work and discipline. You really have to want it to be a trick rider.”

“Last year I fell off a few times, but you always get back up and keep going,” said Shayda, who noted a friend of their from Alberta who does trick riding broke her leg while doing a trick. Her coach and parents told her to keep going, and they switched the tricks up so she wasn’t using that leg.

“There’s no stopping,” said Charlize, and Jordanna added with a chuckle, “Unless you’re unconscious.”

Bailey noted as part of her college program, she has been taking training on roping and cutting.

“For your horse to be able to do trick riding, you have to be able to do other things or they’ll get sour, and the horse will duck out or buck you. So you want to make sure their minds think in different ways to do different things, like roping, cutting,” added Shayda.

In honour of Kyla. the girls used some of the money from their performances last year, and held a Valentine’s Day dance at Glen Ewen, as well as collecting items for the teens’ closet at Ronald McDonald House, where Kyla stayed while getting her treatments in Saskatoon and Winnipeg.

The five girls made the trip to Saskatoon recently to present a donation and the items to Ronald McDonald House, as well as to the Jim Pattison Children’s Hospital for their “Treats and Treasures Cart”.