With AQHA gelding "Storm", Wyoming
August 23, 2018
More about Robyn Bottem...
Oklahoma Limited Liability Company
Bottem Legacy Ranch+
I came to realize I would always be a student of the horse and a lover of God’s magnificent and versatile creatures! The most memorable years of my childhood were spent riding anything with four legs at my paternal Grandparents racehorse stable and breeding farm. When their goats (who were primarily used to keep nervous race horses company) would hold still long enough, I would jump on one of them for what would ultimately become the shortest rides of my life. My grandfather, Payne Roye Sr., was a very well-known prosecutor for the state of Texas but his grand passion was horses. He built and established Tonkawa Downs racetrack in Graham, Texas. He was a Thoroughbred and American Quarter Horse owner, breeder and trainer who successfully raced and won all over the country. I grew up romping around his home grown racetrack and various other statewide racetracks where I learned to handle, care for, and train hot blooded and extremely valuable race horses. I watched my grandfather closely over the years as he continued to educate and better himself for the love of the horse every single day. It was his mission to reach other equine enthusiasts and encourage them to be equally as successful in their pursuit of horses. He created and produced two cable TV shows called “Hoof Beats, Ltd.” and “The Equine Hour.” These television programs took him on extensive equine adventures across the globe to learn about and film many breeds of the world. My grandfather's programs were enjoyed by viewers on mainstream television for years. In conjunction, he published a horseman’s magazine called “Hoof Prints” that was in circulation across the country. His expertise, love and devotion for horses continued to feed my hunger for knowledge and experience as I later matured into an equine enthusiast, professional horse trainer and instructor. My grandfather always jokingly said, “Robyn, if you want to make a million dollars in the horse industry, you have to start with five million!” That was very wise advice that I’ve continually recalled and cherished in my ventures within the industry.
My dad, Dr. Watson Payne Roye, Jr., is another great influence in my life when it comes to horses. In his teenage years, he was a talented racehorse jockey for my grandfather before attending medical school at Texas Tech University. His history with horses combined with his medical mind paved a road of creativity and curiosity in me that would later become a reality for very memorable future endeavors. My dad spent the better part of my youth indulging my love and passion for horses. He was right beside me, in our barn at home, day in and day out, teaching me everything he had learned from his dad. In High School, I remember so clearly, many long nights as we traveled the Texas highways and byways together, in pursuit of another rodeo and another opportunity for me to take a swift turn around the barrels.
My grandfather and my dad are the two most important, contributing influences in my life where horses are concerned. They are brilliant and innovative, and they were pioneers and leaders in the equine industry for many years. They taught me what it was like to be a responsible and revolutionary horsewoman. From them, I learned a world of hands on knowledge and practical training methods that enabled me to indulge my God given privilege to love, ride and protect horses. Because I was born into this privilege, I’ve always felt a great responsibility to respect and care for horses the best way possible. I’ve learned to remain humble and realize with horses there is no permanent right or wrong way but there is always an opportunity to learn a new way which enables me to offer them a better life and a safer environment.
In my adventures with horses throughout the years, I’ve been blessed by God to ride and train on multiple continents and in various countries around the world. I spent five years in Germany, working and riding for several Grand Prix Dressage trainers and I was able to coach some local and national children to ride while I was over there. Learning to ride Dressage from some of the best German riders in the country impacted me greatly and I learned some very valuable and unique techniques that compliment my western training and riding practices profoundly. In Manitoba, Canada, in the early 2000 era, I owned and operated a large Quarter Horse ranch called “Texas Connection Ranch” for almost a decade. During this time, I successfully started many young horses for the public and I hosted and instructed a youth summer riding camp for the city of Steinbach. I also invented, patented, and manufactured a product called the “Equiface Saver.” This was a leading edge, protective trailering product for horses and it was endorsed and used around the country by respected horsemen and notable clinicians such as Monty Roberts, Josh Lyons, Craig Cameron, Ken McNabb, Doug and Kathy Vochelle, and Donna May West. At home on the ranch, I had an accomplished AQHA/PHBA stallion and he captured the Manitoba Quarter Horse Association “High Point” stallion award in 2008. He kept my barn very busy and forever entertaining during breeding season. Spring was always a fun time around the ranch with the new foals frolicking about everywhere. In 2009/2010, I spent a year and a half in Wyoming as the primary horse trainer and ranch hand for RFD-TV clinician Ken McNabb (Diamond McNabb Quarter Horses) at the Powderhorn Ranch. I learned to cover many miles in the saddle, for days on end, while tracking and moving cattle. I learned to rope effectively as we doctored cattle in the wide open prairies, and I learned to fire brand during branding season. Some of my favorite memories at the Powederhorn Ranch include running in the remuda for a day’s work and riding for hours upon hours, never getting any closer to the brink of the horizon. I enjoyed the opportunity to use horses for everyday tasks, including pulling Elk off the mountain for hunters during hunting season. Work on the ranch was from sun up to sun down and I remember going to sleep every night anxious to begin again the next day. In 2013, I joined the “Double M” trail riding team in Houston, Texas where we embarked on a one hundred mile, nine day ride with approximately one thousand other riders, and we rode from Brenham, Texas to downtown Houston for the Livestock Show and Rodeo kickoff parade. Most recently, I’ve enjoyed living in Boulder, Colorado in the foothills of the mountains where my husband and I spend every weekend riding the challenging and vast terrain of the Rockies. There are a million miles of trails that weave in and out of some the most beautiful countryside I’ve ever seen. Spending my days in the sun with the one I truly love, as we ride the sun down into the ground, leaves me feeling complete and peaceful.
Horses have truly been the absolute love and passion that fuel my life. I am forever thankful for the unconditional love and support from my incredible family and my closest friends. I especially thank my mom, Teresa, for letting me be a dusty little cowgirl growing up instead of the ballerina she always dreamed I would become. My husband, Lee, is a breath of fresh air and he has given new meaning to a fruitful marriage and Godly partnership. He nourishes, provides and encourages me to be the best cowgirl I can be, every day. His support is never failing and because of him, I always feel incredibly loved and appreciated. Training colts, coaching adults and youth to ride successfully, trail riding the mountains and participating in ranch versatility work are among my first loves when it comes to horses. I look forward to more successful endeavors at Bottem Legacy Ranch, L.L.C. as an equine enthusiast, trainer, instructor, cattlewoman and trail blazer! God has been my Protector, Guide and the endless Provider of the vast equine journey’s I’ve enjoyed thus far. I give Him eternal praise and all the glory for the past, present and dynamic future yet to come. “For You formed my inward parts; You wove me in my mother’s womb. I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:13-14
MOBILE USERS: More detailed information & photos are found on the FULL WEBSITE online, last updated 8/23/18.
Lee & Robyn Bottem