The Horse Whisperer
In 1976, a native New Yorker made his way to Colorado. He loved horses, and had spent the better part of his young life with the majestic animals. Now, 35 years later, Tony Brunetti is the cowboy he always wanted to be.
Ring of Fire
Tony trained a three-year-old gelding named Brooklyn for his first Extreme Mustang Makeover competition. On the first day, Brooklyn was resting his head on Tony’s shoulder. By the ninth week, Brooklyn could jump through a ring of fire, tolerate pistols being shot from his back, and had even toppled his biggest fear: crinkly, noisy plastic tarps. Tarps are notoriously challenging for horses, who are especially sensitive to the sound and spontaneous movement of the tarp, often rearing and snorting at the sight of one. Tony began his performance for the Makeover with Brooklyn draped from head to hoof in a tarp, riding around the arena to Richard Strauss’ “Also sprach Zarathustra.” Brooklyn would go on to draw the second-highest bid during the sale following the event.