Charlie Cole has trained well over 50 AQHA world champions, and has ridden such Western Pleasure and Western Riding greats such as Harley D Zip and Vital Signs Are Good. But he’s trained and owned some top barrel horses, too, like Rockette Ta Fame, who recently claimed an AQHA world title of her own with PJ Burger aboard.
So when news got around that Cole was buying Moss Me Moe from Ohio’s Cody Powell after Cody and Moe’s 2011 breakout Congress, everyone was excited to see what Moe’s life would be like in Pilot Point, Texas, with one of the greatest trainers of our generation. We caught up with Cole last week to find out what the two have been up to, and we weren’t disappointed.
What was it about Moe that interested you in the first place?
Actually I’d never heard of Moe until just after Congress. At Congress I saw Kelly Riley, I had bought Brannon Riley’s great pole mare Miss N Fantasy from him a few years ago. I saw Kelly and mentioned I was looking for a new horse. Almost every nice barrel and pole horse I’ve had I bought outta Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana and Illinois. So right after Congress Kelly called and told me about Moe. I then called Cody Powell who wasn’t really that interested in selling Moe.
How does his style fit your own?
Moe’s style is so fun and easy. He can be a challenge getting in the arena but he’s not dangerous he just wants to go!
Will Moe be rodeoing much in 2012?
Moe ran at his first ProRodeo at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo in February. He made a good run with PJ Burger riding and was 1 out of a check. He may go to a few more rodeos but I bought him for me to run and I already have Rockette Ta Fame on the rodeo circuit with PJ.
What are your goals for Moe this year and beyond?
My goal this is is to run Moe at the AQHA shows and some 4D’s and then the Congress and World Show.
How does Moe fit in at High Point with all of your awesome pleasure horses/hunters and mares and studs? Do you have many geldings, and is showing a gelding refreshing?
Moe fits right in at High Point, he’s a great horse. I prefer geldings for show horses and speed horses but I ride several really nice mares and stallions.
You’re a trainer by nature…have you had to do any tuning on Moe to get him used to your style, or do you just let him work?
Moe is a finished barrel and pole horse, so the only real training I’ve done is that when I got him he would only take his left lead when warming up, so I asked Cody how to pick up his right lead and he said, “I don’t worry about leads.” I got a laugh outta that and being a horse trainer leads are important, so the first few weeks of riding I worked on teaching Moe to pick up his correct leads. He’s good now.
What’s Moe’s life like when he’s not competing?
When Moes home I ride him to keep him fit and he goes on our horse treadmill 3-4 days a week. It keeps him fit and conditioned.
Tell us about the best run you and Moe have made so far.
I’d have to say my best run so far was winning the enior poles at Houston and being second in senior barrels at Houston outta 60 head. It was a very tough barrel race with several NFR girls and top horse, Moe ran hard and I almost tipped the second barrel but grabbed it, it was a wild but fun run.
Would you rather run barrels or poles on Moe?
I’ve always preferred barrels over poles but Moe does make running poles fun.
Do any of your students ever get tempted to try barrel racing?
I have one student who has started barrel racing but I don’t claim to be a barrel horse trainer , it’s what I do for fun and I own 5 riding age barrel horses and do it for my own enjoyment.