CMSA Youth Horse of the Year

Austin Grazier and CT Reyn Beau win the AQHA youth horse of the year trophy at the 2014 Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association Championship.

The American Quarter Horse Journal

Seventeen-year-old Austin Grazier is the proud owner of 2014 AQHA Cowboy Mounted Shooting Top Youth Horse of the Year CT Reyn Beau.

Two weeks before the 2014 Cowboy Mounted Shooting Association World Championship, 17-year-old Austin Grazier tweeted that he was more worried about what shirts he was going to wear than about the actual competition.

Well, he must have worn all of the lucky shirts, as the Golden, Colorado, teenager and his palomino gelding, CT Reyn Beau, won the AQHA Cowboy Mounted Shooting Top Youth Horse of the Year trophy at the year-end awards banquet after the show.

Chad Little of Saint Michael, Minnesota, was named the 2014 AQHA top cowboy and Tammy Billingsley of Wickenburg, Arizona, was named the 2014 AQHA top cowgirl.

Austin just purchased CT Reyn Beau, aka “Travis,” in May. The 13-year-old gelding is by CT Reyn Mann and out of Skips Ceeta by Skips Vespa Boy and was bred by Mike Ralston of Collbran, Colorado.

“He’s great,” Austin said about Travis, “I love him to death. I’m really happy with how we’re doing.”

Austin and Travis placed sixth, third, third, third and first in stages 1-5 at the finals.

“This is my third year in cowboy mounted shooting and Travis has only been doing mounted shooting since December (2013),” he told the Journal after receiving his trophy.

The lone horse-crazy person in his family, Austin has been riding since he was 8, taking lessons from Elizabeth Clavette, another cowboy mounted shooter.

“I actually rode a horse for the first time when I was 4 and loved it, then we had to move, so I picked it back up when we moved back to Colorado,” he said. “Elizabeth and her mom have the only riding and boarding facility in the area. I met ‘E’s’ mom and I actually asked her if I could clean stalls, and then I took my first riding lesson the next day.”

And he’s been working at the barn and helping with summer camps ever since.

So, as a senior in high school, how much time does Austin have to take off for cowboy mounted shooting events?

“A lot,” he said laughing and rolling his eyes. “I took off 10 days this year for CMSA worlds and a week and a half earlier in the year for the AQHA mounted shooting championships in Houston.”

Austin plans to stick with horses and cowboy mounted shooting after high school.

“I want to attend Montana State University to study equine science, with a minor in business,” he said.

Watch for Austin at the 2014 John Deere AQHA Cowboy Mounted Shooting Championships in March in Houston .