In a western style cutting contest, horse and rider work together to cut out a cow from a small herd of cattle and then prevent it from returning to the herd. This process is known as a ‘run’ – and it’s something that Addison Dudley, who hails from the Queensland town of Goondiwindi, is particularly good at.
“In 2018 at the Victorian Futurity, I was Champion in the Junior Youth and got my very first buckle,” says the 12-year-old wunderkind. “I was shaking when the presentation was happening because I was so excited. I also won the Darling Downs Cutting Club Champion Champions Junior Youth.”
So far, 2019 has also proved to be a very good year with Addison winning Reserve Champion at the Balonne River Cutting Club in the Junior Youth competition, Champion and Reserve Champion at the Northern Rivers Cutting Horse Club Junior Youth competition, and Reserve Champion at the Interschools Horse Extravaganza.
One of the advantages of western riding is that includes sports that can be enjoyed by the whole family – and the Dudleys are no exception. Both mum Jackie and stepdad Todd are well-known in the cutting world.
Addison usually rides Superman, her 15-year-old bay Quarter Horse, but on other occasions she is not averse to ‘stealing’ her mum’s Quarter Horses. “I really like Tapt Choice, who’s five years old, and One Stylish Turpentine, a nine–year–old bay,” she confesses.
Addison’s riding career began with Comet the Shetland pony. “Mum first held me on a horse when I was two weeks old, but when I was three, some family friends gave me Comet. I was so excited,” she remembers.
She got into cutting because her parents always had cutting horses of their own. “I used to go and watch them compete, which was pretty cool. I think I like it so much because it’s a great bonding experience with friends as well as with the horses,” she says.
Addison, who starts high school next year, also enjoys boxing and swimming and rides as much as possible. “Because I go to school and do other sports as well, I can’t ride every day. But a week before I compete I practice really hard. Sometimes my mum or my stepdad Todd will try and help out by riding the horses before I get on them to settle them down,” she explains.
Remarkably mature for her age, Addison already has a great take on life: “I want to continue going well on my horses when I compete, and when I don’t have a great run, to remember there will be other times to try again and that everyone has a bad day.”
She is also very appreciative of her family: “Mum is always there to help me get ready to compete, and she teaches me to try my hardest. I’d really like to thank her, as well as Todd, who talks me through all of my runs and helps me to pick good cows. And also my little brother Aiden for keeping me happy all the time. Sometimes we have a little fight but he’s lovely and he makes me happy. My family keeps me going.”
Congratulations to Addison from all of us here at HorseVibes – and we wish you every future success.