Behind the Slide – Elizabeth Hartin

Elizabeth Hartin’s career as a horse trainer already has a wide scope of success but is simultaneously just getting started.

Hartin grew up riding run-of-the-mill show horses, whatever she could swing a leg over. After graduating from the University of Missouri, she made the big move down to Texas, taking a job at the Carol Rose Ranch.

“I wanted to be more focused on reiners,” Hartin said. “Somehow, I ended up riding cow horses and cutting horses, so I went to work in the cutting industry.”

At Marvin Performance Horses, Hartin became the loper for one of the most notorious mares of the cutting industry- the late HighBrow SuperCat, the 2005 National Cutting Horse Association Futurity Champion, with progeny earnings of over a million dollars.

“Being her loper might be the biggest thing on my resume yet. Just kidding, kind of. She was just pretty awesome, and I learned a lot with her,” said Hartin.

The ten years spent riding cutting horses were great for Hartin, but once she moved home to Missouri and opened her own facility, she knew it was time to get back to what she loved- riding reining horses.

“I love 3-year-olds. They’re probably my favorite,” Hartin said and started laughing. “I know that’s not usual. Right now, my niche is that I can make a pretty good non pro horse. We’ll have a pretty good, big group to ride in the [NRHA] Derby next year.”

Although all of the horses in the barn have reining goals, Hartin keeps her background in cutting horses close, breeding a daughter of NCHA #1 Leading Sire High Brow Cat to various reining-bred stallions to produce offspring with exceptional reining talent that have just a little bit of a cow-mindset to them.

At the 2023 NRHA Futurity, Hartin rode GT Major Money, a mare by Gunners Tinseltown and out of A Cowgirls Money, for a score of 215, securing a spot in the Level 2 and 3 Open Semi-Finals.

“There’s still a lot of horse left for me to tap into,” Hartin said. “We left some points on the table that I can grab up next run.”

Since returning to reining, Hartin has won the Maple Leaf Open, the Level 3 and 4 Aged Open Events at the SMRHA Cowtown Futurity, and the Level 1 and 2 Novice Horse MWRHA Extravaganza.

Hartin’s long-term goals in reining are just like anyone else’s – to push for the high scores.

“We are just little people in this game, but I’m happy to have nice horses to ride, and it’s the best day anytime I get to swing my leg over a good horse.”