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Trainer Salute: Brandon Givens



Brandon Givens – Rogersville, Tennessee

HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN TRAINING HORSES PROFESSIONALLY?
6 Years

TELL US SOME FAMILY HISTORY OF RAISING AND SHOWING WALKING HORSES.
My dad (Terry Givens) has been breeding, training and showing walking horses for 30 years.

OF ALL THE HORSES YOU HAVE TRAINED, OPEN AND AMATEUR, DO YOU HAVE A HORSE YOU FEEL MADE YOU INTO THE TRAINER YOU ARE TODAY? WHAT HORSE WAS THAT AND WHY DO FEEL THAT WAY?
I don’t think I can credit one horse to it. I think it’s a combination of the good and bad horses that you get in over the years and the experience that comes with them. I feel what they all teach you makes you into the horse trainer that you are.

WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE TO YOUNG ASPIRING TRAINERS?
Be persistent. Work hard and someday it’ll all pay off. Also, your customers are the KEY to your success. Take care of them!

WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR IN THE PERFECT YEARLING?
Breeding, conformation and movement.

HOW ARE YOU MANAGING THE COVID-19 OUTBREAK? IS YOUR BARN ON LOCKDOWN? ARE YOU STILL HOLDING YOUR REGULAR CLIENT APPOINTMENTS? HOW HAS THIS AFFECTED YOUR TRAINING?
Honestly, we haven’t changed our work schedule any. We have still been working like normal and accepting appointments on a regular schedule. Some of our older customers haven’t been there as much as they would normally but we haven’t seen much of a change.

WHO IS YOUR FAVORITE PAST WORLD GRAND CHAMPION AND WHY?
The Black Night Shade. I just thought he had it all!  I feel like he would have been one of the best contributors to our breed.

IF THERE WAS ONE AREA OF THE INDUSTRY YOU COULD CHANGE OR RAMP UP, WHAT WOULD IT BE AND WHY?
We all are in this for one reason. That’s the love of the Tennessee Walking Horse. So we NEED to stick together, support one another and show love to each other. If we can’t stand in unity amongst ourselves, why should we expect others to want to be a part of this great horse and industry?

IF YOU WERE NOT AT THE BARN OR A HORSE SHOW, WHAT WOULD WE FIND YOU DOING IN YOUR FREE TIME?
With my wife, spending time with our families.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE TV SHOWS, MOVIES OR NETFLIX FEATURES HAVE YOU BEEN BINGE WATCHING DURING THE PANDEMIC?
All American and a few movies but we’re not home long enough to watch much tv.

WHAT WOULD YOU SAY HAS BEEN THE HIGHLIGHT OF YOUR CAREER THUS FAR?
It may not seem like a highlight to some, but winning a blue ribbon at Asheville, myself. It was something I had always wanted to do!

WHAT WORDS OF WISDOM CAN YOU GIVE TO THE HORSE INDUSTRY ON THE PANDEMIC?
Hang in there! This is only temporary. When this is over, things will be a lot better than we think!

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