Celebrity Equestrians: Christie Brinkley

Christie Brinkley is an internationally successful model, actress, author, Cover Girl and cowgirl.

This post contains excerpts from an interview printed in People We Know, Horses They Love, written by Jill Rappaport and Wendy Wilkinson.

Christie’s love for horses began on family vacations at dude ranches in Palm Springs, California.  “I was one of those typical little girls who just loved horses and would dream about riding them all the time.”

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Source: Figure of Fun

Her first horse was a retired polo pony named Belle Star.  “I woke up one Christmas morning and there was a white horse out on the lawn wearing a big red ribbon.”  Belle and Christie would move across the nation together, finally settling in Montauk, New York at the Deep Hollow Ranch.

Her passion for cutting started with a video called Learn To Cut, which she bought off an ESPN TV infomercial.  “Some pals and I watched the video-tape, hooked up the fake cow, and started to get our horses to follow us.  Then we rented a real herd of cattle, and it soon became apparent that we needed to get some authentic cutting horses from Texas.”

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Source: Life Magazine

Christie never slowed down from there.  Soon she was connected to Punk Carter, a well-known cutting trainer in Texas.  “I went down to Punk’s ranch and he put me on this horse that turned so fast I felt like the cartoon character that runs off the cliff.”  She hauled to local cutting events at night and rounded up Red Brangus cattle on Punk’s ranch during the day.

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Source: Horsepedia

At the 1991 NCHA Championships, Christie rode one of Punk’s champion cutters in the celebrity division, competing against Tanya Tucker and Michael Keaton.  She came in 4th place that year, and returned in 1992 to win.  “I wear that buckle with pride and it’s amazing how that belt buckle just goes with everything, including evening gowns!”

Christie loves to hit the trails too.  She took part in a ride on the Oregon Trail on her cutting horse, Goodbar Miss.  “At night we would string our horses up at little motels along the way or even camp out under the stars, and then continue the next day.  It was incredible.”

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Goodbar Miss died on October 29, 2013.  Christie wrote this farewell to her friend, “Saying my final farewell to an old friend, Goodbar Miss. She passed away today and I will always count my hours with her as some of my happiest! She was a great cutting horse, and solid as a rock on the trail. From summer night moonlight rides to galloping thru the woods and the excitement of competition she was trusty and my most cherished and loved horse who always put the happy in the trail!  Goodbar Miss was the kind of horse you could trust with your babies.  All three of my kids spent time in her saddle.  She kept them safe and contributed to their love of the outdoors. All that, and then she would do her best to try to make me look good at our cutting horse competitions. I can’t believe it’s the end of the trail. I loved my days with Goodbar Miss.” Source: Dan’s Papers

On Facebook she wrote, “Goodbar did everything with me she even came to work for Cover Girl with me!”

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Christie passed on her love for horses to the rest of her family.  Her children have all taken riding lessons at one time or another.

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Source: Viola

“I love nature and think that there is no better way to see the world than from a horse’s back.”

Go Riding!

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