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Liz Michael’s Focus on “Fame”

September 7, 2018

By: Tammie Hiatt

Although most goals are set early in the season, it’s perfectly acceptable to shift gears mid-season and turn your focus a new direction. This is exactly where Liz Michael of Paris, Ohio is finding herself.

“I really had no thoughts about making the IFR until a couple of my friends told me that I was in the standings,” said Liz. “I had just been focusing on how my horse was handling the rodeo runs.”

“When I bought my IPRA card three years ago I had a solid rodeo mare that I was hauling and Fame was just a futurity horse. I took him to one rodeo that year, and it absolutely blew his mind, he couldn’t handle the noise.  Last year, I hauled him to two rodeos and he did awesome. This year, he’s made peace with the crowds and knows his job.”

“Fame is 7 years old and I’ve kept him longer than I ever keep a horse. I got him when he was a long weanling. His registered name is Too Famous to Kill. He stands about 15.1 hands. His breeding is Flit to Kill and Dash Ta Fame. I love the Flit to Kill breeding; I actually have eight of them at my house right now. I have a 3-year-old mare that is only 14 hands tall, but she is very quick footed. I hope she likes the track pens, she’s going to be the perfect size for them.”

“My whole income is training horses,” comments Liz. “I usually have two to three horses ready to sell each year.  The Flit to Kill horses are so easy to work with, they just get it. I like a free running style versus a push style horse, so I like the Dash to Fame breeding to add the speed. I also like my horses to be a little higher-headed, they get under themselves better.”

“Fame is a very honest horse, and he’s quick footed rather than fast. He’s done well with the racetrack pens this year. He can tell if we are running on a track or a big arena by the way I warm him up. If we are running on a track, I’ll shorten his tie-down and I ride him in circles and figure eights to keep him rounder. If we are running in a large pen, I’ll spin him around more on the backside of his figure eights. If it’s deeper ground, I’ll ask him to be stiffer.“

“I didn’t start entering rodeos until the middle of June. I’ve been able to stay pretty close to home but did travel to New York, Pennsylvania, Michigan, Illinois, and I’m just getting back from Georgia. So far, I’d have to say Charlotte, Michigan has been my favorite rodeo. I won my biggest check of the year there.”

“I’m sitting 12th in the IPRA world standings now. I’m not going to get to very many more rodeos, there is one in Kentucky in October and then the regional finals, so I’m hoping I can stay in the top 15 and make the IFR. If not, I’m happy with my horse and how far he has come this year.”