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Attention all Wyoming Cutters - I am trying to build up a library of Members’ Profiles which I will publish here on the web site. I think it would be wonderful if all our members, past, present and future can have their stories, histories and achievements recorded for posterity – don’t you agree?  So I would be extremely grateful if you would complete the following Questionnaire and return it to me along with any photographs – email would be great but if not please mail them to me and I will try to ensure your photographs are returned to you once I have been able to copy them.  Don’t be bashful or modest, I for one would love to get to know more about our members and I am sure we all would enjoy reading each other’s stories – so please do submit your profile!!!  Thanks in advance!!

Click here for Questionnaire


You could say these kids were born to cut. The grandkids of Wyoming cutting horse trainer Steve James and his wife Mavis. Chet and Rylee Whitman are heading to Western Nationals and active members of the Wyoming Cutting Horse Association. I asked Chet and Rylee a few questions so that we could get to know them a bit better….

Rylee Whitman:
Age: 13
How long have you been cutting: 4 years
Horse: Smashin Aristocrat (AKA - Astro)
Favorite subject in school: P.E.
What do you do besides cutting: Barrel racing, pole bending ,team roping, starting my first buckskin colt
Words of wisdom: "Go enjoy your horse…it’s a wonderful life!" Rylee Whitman
Competing in: Jr. Youth

Chett Whitman:
Age: 16
How long have you been cutting: 2-3 years
Horse: HereRey Go Again (AKA - Mary)
Favorite subject in school: Math and Project Welding
What do you do besides cutting: Team Rope, Basketball
Words of wisdom: "Do what you can, with what you have, where you are"
Competing in: Sr. Youth ( I am missing a chance to heel at the New Castle High School
Rodeo for this, so I hope I do good)

Best of luck to both of you at NCHA Western National Championships.


NAME: Elizabeth Dixon Talermo (Betsy)

Virginia Beach, Virginia

OCCUPATION: Owner of Jackson Hole Clothiers established in 1982

CHILDREN: Emilie Dixon Talermo is 19 years old. Pretty Emilie is her mothers pride and joy. She is attending her first year at CU in Boulder Colorado. Brilliant son Ryan is 27 years old, lives as works in Jackson as a mechanical engineer as looks forward to completing his MBA sometime in the future. Beautiful Mamma Yvonna is married to Justin Watsabaugh, lives in Bondurant, and is very busy with young sons Carter and Taylor. Justin has small construction business and Yvonna works hard selling insurance at Farm Bureau. I am honored and proud to have had a part in raising these wonderful people.




How many years have you been involved with horses? Horses have always been an important part of my life. Receiving my first horse for my 7th birthday growing up in Rancho Santa Fe, California got me off to a wonderful start. I rode English and competed at some low level Hunter Jumper classes. Spending those elementary years summers at my Grandmother's dude ranch in Jackson Hole, I would shift from English girl to cowgirl. Long story short...there have only been two times i didn't have a horse in my life. Horses have given many different gifts in the many different stages of life. When I had a young family and new struggling business riding was my quiet time to balance and reflect. I still find this bliss on the trail and need the balance in my life...but have become very excited and enamored with cutting horses and the thrill of competition.

How did you first become interested in cutting? With Jamie Saycocie and Jamie Cline in the neighborhood and more time on my hands, the Jamie's encouraged me to go to Steve James in Daniel, Wyoming to experience "the thrill" one spring day. I believe his name was Harry and he felt very quiet and reserved as we waited to see the cows. With wonderful encouragement from Steve and lots laughter, hooting and hollering I knew I was hooked and must learn a lot more.

What year did you start cutting? 2003

Who has most influenced you and why? Big Question!!! Mel Dahl has been "THE BOSS", always believed in me and taught me well. Being one of the best friends I am so grateful to have, was just the fluff. Steve James has always tried his best with me. Chickory Pep and Brian Anderson had lots of lessons for me. Justin Johnson never ever gave up on Hollidocs Sassy Sug and I and is voice of calm to me in the corner. Mark Bernhardt was patient and caring with me and my expanding brood. Karla Camp came in to bolster the self esteem with style and grace. And then poor Les Bates without much knowledge got me with his protégé Somebody's Smart Talk. Many miles later and lots of high level cutting we watched at PCCHA in Paseo Robles this last fall. He as well had lots of lessons for me. Lucky for him he is ten hours drive from me or I'd drive him nuts. I am committed to my studies and am grateful for all the teachers, but please don't be mistaken, I live in Jackson and live at Mel's each and every winter and visit bi-weekly all summer...happily. Thanks also to the “cheering section extraordinaire” – Muffy, Kristen & Jamie.

What do you feel is your greatest accomplishment in cutting? Winning my first buckle in 2007. Non-Pro Champion for Wyoming on my project child (sometimes witch) Hollidocs Sassy Sug. Starting on Mel's protégé Bob Acre Knobby as a 3 year old. Getting Chickory Pep loped down. Placing 3rd in PCCHA Gelding Futurity Stakes on new handsome boy, Somebodys Smart Talk.

Tell us about your first cutting horse. I purchased Bob Acre Knobby from Dick Mulligan with payment plan. He was young and I could have been called dumb, but we persevered and showed them all. I was so lucky to have such a mellow minded athletic dude. Must thank Terry Judd and of course Mel Dahl for their great influences here.

Tell us about your favorite cutting horse and any quirks or funny stories about it. Favorite...guess I have four. Funniest story may have not been so funny. Sassy and Betsy become famous at running off and then rearing ALL the way and taking a few steps. Oh yes, I remember sharpening up for Western Nationals at Steve James and him yelling at me to quit falling and my broken ribs got wrapped up on our way to Ogden. I just had to hang up with my bra on the horn one more time to try and get over that bad habit.

What is your favorite cutting and why? Western Nationals and PCCHA Futurity. Love the level of competition and can't imagine I am there and possibly have a chance.

What other horse disciplines have you been involved in? I have started a few horses from the bottom up. Very satisfying . Did it, over it. I even took a couple years worth of training for the mounted police. Imagine I had to fail something at the end so I wouldn't have to ride around town square following the law. Enjoyed a couple pack trips and love Thermopolis Outlaw Trail and couple years with Emilie and mother Ty.

What do most people not know about you? Not much...if you care to know I would most likely tell you...maybe even if you didn't care. Ok, my Father is a Rhode Scholar.

What other hobbies do you have? Love to travel and have been fortunate to have seen a lot of our world. Professional shopper. Water skiing. Enjoy my beautiful surrounding

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