KREMMLING — Participants arrived at the Grand County Fairgrounds this past weekend to test luck at horseshoe-making in a Farrier Competition.
A farrier is a specialist in hoof care, which includes trimming and balancing horse hooves and placing shoes on hooves. Farriers must have a combination of blacksmith skills as well as some knowledge of the horse’s lower limb anatomy. The contest puts those skills to the test by only allowing a certain amount of time in each category for each contestant to make a horseshoe, to be judged by professional farrier judges.
The first annual Kremmling Farrier Contest, hosted by the Rocky Mountain Farrier Association, had 29 participants ranging from 23 years-old to 51 years. All participants were professional farriers hailing all the way from Kentucky, Wyoming and close at home in Colorado.
Contestants competed in three different categories: six competed in novice; 13 in intermediate; and 10 entered in the expert open class. There was also a two-man Draft Horse Competition.
Another fun class competition allowed a pair to make a horseshoe in 30 minutes or less. One partner held the hammer and one used the tongs to make a horseshoe.
The winner of that category was Justin Frank and girlfriend Jodie Rhodes. Frank is a resident of Granby, and has been a professional farrier for 21 years.
The judges had difficult decisions to make for each of the categories. Each of the scores were judged within tenths of each other, making for close competition.
Intern Kaitlyn Adams can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org