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Todd Minikus has ridden all kinds of horses, not to mention hard-bucking bulls at the rodeos in his younger days.
But the only way he would make the cut was to win the last qualifier of the Longines FEI World Cup™ Jumping at Ocala - and he rose to the challenge.
18 athletes—nearly half the starting field—were fault-free in the first round to make the tie-breaker.
Tips like “Everyone is slowing down before that last turn.”
After all, this wasn’t Minikus’ first rodeo, so he knows not to pay attention to trash talk!
...which meant having the self-control not to pull out all the stops as he might on another occasion.
Minikus told himself, ‘Don’t go too fast.
I didn’t want to end up turning too tight and having a slip or something like that. I was trying to tame it down.”
The rider admitted, “I have the reputation of going a little too fast once in awhile. I was trying not to make a silly mistake.”
Mission accomplished, Minikus now is looking west, thinking about a new challenge from the rest of the world.
But no worries - he’s up to it.
Text by Nancy Jaffer
Images by Ashley Neuhof