Kansas Horse Council Presents Scholarships With Career Inspiration From Leading Trainer

For the Love of Horses


Grilled Wagyu burgers kicked off the Kansas Horse Council Scholarship presentations featuring a diverse program.
At the Sedalia Community Church north of Manhattan, Andrew Coates discussed his career as a leading cutting horse trainer before ten scholarships were given to young people looking toward careers with horses.
Appropriate to review the Booth Creek Wagyu Ranch which supplied the banquet burgers.
Located north of Manhattan near Olsburg, our ranch was originally developed for world-class whitetail deer hunting, according to Andrew Coates, the ranch manager.
Despite what most people think about the state’s geography, Booth Creek ranch is anything but flat. “It features deep, wooded creek draws, surrounded by rolling hills of lush tallgrass prairie, making it the perfect place to raise our special herd,” Coates informs on the ranch website.
The business began in 2020 when Dave Dreiling attended his first Wagyu auction. He started studying the Wagyu industry in America and saw opportunities to improve it through efficiency, education, and a more practical business approach.
There are three aspects of the business that separate Booth Creek from many other Wagyu producers.
The first was the Wagyu processing facility which now ships products nationwide. Another aspect of the business is keeping everything local. The ranch, processing facility, and distribution center are all located within 20 miles of each other.
Final piece of the puzzle was finding the right people who share the vision. In 2021, Andrew Coates came on board to oversee ranch operations.
He grew up on a Wagyu ranch in Australia and has been a cornerstone of the industry’s growth in America. His family moved from California to Kansas and are now partners in the business.
Starting with online sales in 2021, the business reached new heights later that year with a brick-and-mortar location in Manhattan.
This store offers free samples of freshly seared Wagyu steak, which gives guests the opportunity to taste the difference for themselves and learn what makes Wagyu a culinary treasure, according to Coates.
“We’re here to elevate America’s standard of quality beef,” Coates indicated.
Raised on a cattle ranch in Queensland, Australia, Andrew Coates began his horse training career working for some of the best cutting horse trainers in Australia.
In 1995, he made the move to the United States. His National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) professional career began when National Football League Hall of Famer Joe Montana hired Coates to train for his cutting horse program. In 2003, Coates began accepting outside clients.
Since that time, Coates has earned 20 major aged event champion and reserve champion titles along with taking horses to finalist positions in more than 50 major events, including the NCHA Futurity and Super Stakes.
His lifetime NCHA earnings are now more than $1 million. He and his wife, Nicole, and their two children continue horse involvement along with the cattle business.
“The biggest mistake I’ve made is getting too focused on horse training and losing sight of being a good horseman.,” Coates admitted.
“The biggest myth in cutting is that it’s easy. It may be simple, but it is not easy,” he emphasized.
Coates most memorable moment in cutting was the first time he made the Futurity ­Finals on Sues Barn Cat.
“Try to train every horse to the best of its ability but be aware of its limitations,” Coates said.
His favorite quote and what he considers the best advice came from his employer Joe Montana. “If you’re afraid to lose you can never be a winner.”
Coates’ biggest showring achievements include NCHA major aged event finalist five times, multiple Pacific Coast championships, 2018 Cascades Derby champion, 2017 El Rancho Futurity champion, 2017 Idaho Futurity champion, 2005 Pacific Coast Gelding Stakes champion, and 2005 Breeders Invitational five- and six-year-old champion.
Coates considers the top three horses he’s trained to include Sues Barn Cat, Im Catman, and Lizzys Got Style.
Recipients of scholarships from the Kansas Horse Council (KHC) as presented by executive director Justine Staten with assistance from KHA member Joyce Troyer include:
Chelsi Brown, Logan, daughter of Steve and Tara Brown, majoring in horse production and management at Colby Community College.
Caitlyn Champagne, Lawrence, daughter of Chris and Carolyn Champagne, majoring in kinesiology, Spanish, and physiology at Kansas State University.
Courtney Clinesmith, Cimarron, daughter of Bill and Stephanie Clinesmith, majoring in agricultural economics business at Kansas State University.
Cash Fuesz, Eureka, son of Cory and Heather Fuesz, majoring in organizational leadership at Weatherford College.
Rileigh Holcomb, Ford, daughter of Cody Holcomb and Jessica Stout, majoring in horse production and management at Colby Community College.
Chancy Johnson, White City, daughter of Chad and Janon Johnson, majoring in agribusiness and marketing at Kansas State University.
Kelli Kychik, Topeka, daughter of Corey and Michelle Kychik, majoring in nursing at Kansas State University.
Alyssa Leslie, Inman, daughter of Garrett Leslie and Toni Woodson, majoring in veterinary medicine at Kansas State University.
Kirsten Miessler, Seward, daughter of Ron and Heather Miessler, majoring in elementary education at Wichita State University.
Alexis Studebaker, Harveyville, daughter of David and Jamie Studebaker, majoring in agriculture and communications at Kansas State University.


Present to receive their Kansas Horse Council Scholarships were Alexis Studebaker, Harveyville; Alyssa Leslie, Inman; and Chancy Johnson, White City.


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