Six tons of coke (fuel made from coal), and 1,300 linear feet of steel bar stock, but only one farrier will be named the 2011 World Champion. The world’s top farriers are competing this week in what is known as the “Olympics of Blacksmithing” at the Calgary Stampede.
This year, fifty-six farriers representing thirteen countries including Australia, South Africa, and Scotland are competing in the 32nd World Championship Blacksmiths’ Competition. The prestigious competition hosts a series of forging, horseshoeing and team events, where competitors earn points in an attempt to qualify as a Top Ten finalist.
US team Iron Hurricane is sponsored by Rate My Horse PRO. The team consists of Doc Miller CJF, FWCF, Lyle Jenkins CJF, Steve Sermersheim CJF, AWCF, and Robbie Hunziker CJF. The farriers are PRO Active Members of Rate My Horse PRO and utilize the site to manage their professional reputations.
“Owners and horse trainers can find a highly skilled and professional farrier – the site lets them view customer ratings and make a clear choice based on what is important to them,” Jenkins says.
More than $50,000 is up for grabs in cash and prizes in Calgary. The winner will walk away with $10,000, a limited edition bronze trophy, a Stampede hand tooled belt buckle, and a champion’s jacket.
This year, organizers are also placing special emphasis on the four-man team championship, with the winning squad splitting a $10,000 pot. The competition’s forging and shoeing champions will each earn $1,000, as will the top rookie.