Jo McConnel, Horse Trainer – before a horse trainer, she’s a horsewoman, and before a horsewoman, she’s a horse lover. Jo could be described as that horse crazy girl that never grew up. Maybe you were once that kid, galloping around the playground with your friends at recess, hair (mane) blowing in the wind, neighing and prancing your childhood away. Jo is that girl, your best friend, the one that fell in love with every horse and pony she met – no matter how rank, rude, spoilt or scared it was. That love – she describes as her “childlike faith” – was given to her in a “triple serving” and has kept her passionate flame for horses burning white-hot.
She explains how, as one of eight children, her Dad really ignited her spark with his two imported QH Stallions and a bunch of King Ranch and Tangle C broodmares. She grew up riding pretty much any horse she could catch – helping instill a pure love and understanding of all horses into her horsemanship.
She began competing in barrel racing, roping and Rodeo Queen competitions, and has continued her pursuit of being successful with horses as her life’s destiny. Her highlights to date are marking a 77 ½ down the fence on SJR Cash Advance, and winning a reserve national title in Dressage on a mare she adored and trained as a cowhorse.
She dreams of one day becoming a Finalist in the Worlds Greatest Horseman in Fort Worth and being an interviewee on Cowhorse Full Contact.
Meanwhile, Jo is hustling every day to be the best version of herself possible and the best horsewoman she can be. She is a mentor and friend to many young horsewomen around the country and her big smile and warm nature makes her easy to approach and ask advice of.
She can be seen most weekends at a horse show somewhere, Ranch Horse or Cow Horse, with her canine sidekick Punchy and husband Red by her side.