Business feature: Duo teams up to offer horse training

By Clarence Plank: PNT staff writer

A farmer and horse trainer are teaming up to offer a nearby option to have horses trained.

Neighbors Rocky Garcia and Butch Russell, who met years ago, have started Midway Training Stable on Garcia’s farm.

“It’s harder training cut horses than anything else, but I like to train them,” Russell said. “I can train cutting horses to jumping horses.”

Russell uses different techniques to break horses.

Russell works for Garcia, and they are looking to expand their training business.

“I want to see people happy and have good horses coming to the area,” Garcia said.

He said most local people have to travel to Abilene, Texas, to find someone good at training cutting horses.

“Butch is just as good as the rest of them,” Garcia continued.

Garcia said he took his first horse to Russell for training, and soon Russell trained all his horses.

Russell has been working with horses since he was 13, mostly riding.

When he was stationed in North Carolina at Fort Bragg with the U.S. Army, Russell was assigned to the stables. When he came back to New Mexico, Russell started breaking colts, training them to be ridden, while attending Eastern New Mexico University.

“The horse market is down right now, and people want to see a nice place,” Garcia said. “Butch was kind of limited to what he could expand to at his place. He has a small piece of land.”

Garcia invited Russell to train the horses at his place, so they built a big arena and stalls.

“We have a such a big place here,” Garcia said.

Russell said the Garcias hired hands to work around the farm, but didn’t have anybody who knew anything about horses until they brought him in.

Garcia is looking to take on ten more horses.