Chown hopes to continue to ride after graduation

At a young age, Courtney Chown learned through horseback riding to be self-driven and to work hard to achieve her goals.

“[Chown] is the most beautiful rider I’ve ever seen,” interim western head coach Kindel Huffman said.

At the 2012 NCEA National Championships, Chown defeated All-American honoree Indy Roper 148.5-142, which helped give her an outstanding ending to her collegiate career.

Chown wrapped up her four years on the TCU equestrian team with a 43-16-1 record along with 16 MVP honors. Her senior year consisted of an 11-6 season with two MVP awards. In horsemanship, Chown finished 4-0 at nationals.

Before becoming a Horned Frog, Chown showed in a world where every rider competed individually, Huffman said.

At TCU, Chown said she became a part of a team and wanted her teammates to succeed and do well.

In addition to learning to become a member of a team, Chown said she had to learn how to ride more with her calf and leg than her previous style of riding.

Huffman said she admired Chown’s work ethic the most. The western rider learned to ride different horses and figure out how to win on each horse. Chown did whatever it took to be the best while hoping for other riders to do well also, Huffman said.

Chown said, “I never found that one horse that fit my one style of riding, so it was a little frustrating in the beginning for me because I had to change my ways. But, at the same time, that’s the best thing that ever happened to me.”

The one horse Chown would miss the most is a thoroughbred/quarter horse mix named Copy, she said.

“[Chown] bonds with [Copy] really well, so she enjoys riding him cause she gets him around really well,” Huffman said.

Although she has only coached Chown for a year, Huffman said she has watched her grow as a rider over four years.  

Chown said the best advice she received during her four years at TCU was from former western head coach Gary Reynolds. She said he told the team to “ride like a champion.”

Not only did Chown get the chance to ride for TCU and be a part of a team, but she also made her best friends through the equestrian program, she said.

“If I didn’t come here, I would have never met them,” Chown said. “They’re the best friends I could ever imagine. I’ll have them for life.”

As Chown’s collegiate career draws to a close, she said she planned to continue to ride after graduation.

Huffman said she could see Chown continuing to ride and to show throughout her life, using her talent and knowledge of horsemanship.

Chown said she hoped to find a job in retail in the western industry after graduating from TCU. Despite having connections in the western industry, it did not make finding a job easy. But she said she felt blessed to have connections that would help her start a new chapter in her life.