Chuck Givens and Leavin Em Wishin streak for home, and a world championship, in the pole bending finals at the 2011 Adequan Select World. Journal photo.
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by Tara ChristiansenThe American Quarter Horse Journal
Back when Charles “Chuck” Givens was courting his now wife, Lauri, he made her a promise. And he’s certainly living up to that promise.
As with many American Quarter Horse breeders, it all goes back to a brand.
Leavin Em Wishin, the 2006 sorrel mare that Chuck rode to a world championship in pole bending at the 2011 Adequan Select World Championship Show, sports an LA brand.
“People always ask me how that ‘LA’ gets to be there from ‘Chuck Givens.’ Well, when my wife and I were dating, I told her I’d make her famous and put her initials on everything, coming and going. It’s been on thousands of horses. Anytime you go to a horse show, you see my wife’s initials.”
This was the fourth year that Chuck and Lauri made their way to Amarillo from Richmond, Kentucky.
But Chuck’s no stranger to the winner’s circle – he won the barrel racing at the 2010 Adequan Select World on Sugar Rullah.
Arguably one of his most successful years was 2009, when he was the Adequan Select World champion and reserve world champion in pole bending.
Riding into the Amarillo National Center arena last in the pole bending finals, Chuck had a game plan.
“When I was sitting in the spot that I was today, I knew all I had to do was have a clean run and stay the same speed – I knew I could do that with ease with her,” Chuck explained. “She just rides the way a horse is supposed to at this stage.”
Keeping with his plan, Chuck and “Martha” put up the fastest finals time of 21.294 seconds, which totaled to 42.516 seconds with his prelims time, beating out Rick Neff and RA Quiet Mover and their total time of 43.501 seconds.
Chuck has been enjoying the consistency and good mind that Martha brings to the table every day.
“She’s just the most consistent horse I have,” he said. “She’s real steady and real consistent – just a real joy to ride.”
Martha, who has been with Chuck since she was 3, is sired by Marthas Frenchman and out of Peppys Mystical Moon by Stormin Bar Peppy.
Chuck has long been impressed with Marthas Frenchman as a sire, as well as his sire, Frenchmans Guy. Marthas Frenchman stood at Chuck Givens Quarter Horses for several years.
“They’re very rideable horses,” Chuck says of the Frenchmans Guy bloodline. “The Frenchmans Guys and Marthas Frenchmans are just horses that will listen to you and let you ride and enjoy the day.”