Accomplished barrel racer and trainer Michelle Alley keeps, raises, and rides healthy, happy horses with help from SUCCEED.
Texas-based barrel racer and trainer Michelle Alley has been on the back of a horse since before she could walk. Michelle grew up on a farm in Tabor, South Dakota, and was exposed to rodeo and show horses from an early age. Her dad, BJ Alley, competed in rodeos and her mom, Linda Cap, showed horses, so it’s safe to say that horses run in her blood. Michelle moved to Madisonville, Texas, in 2011, where comfortable year-round temperatures make it ideal for training horses on her 12-acre farm.
For Michelle, SUCCEED is a no-brainer in caring for her personal and professional horses. She’s seen incomparable results for the better half of this last decade.
Barrel Racing: A Happy Accident for Michelle Alley
Although constantly surrounded by horses, Michelle didn’t start competing in rodeos until she was a freshman in high school. Before that, Michelle, tall for her age at 5’9” (eventually 5’11”), focused on other sports where she excelled at a young age.
Michelle was part of the high school’s varsity basketball and varsity track teams as a junior high student. Additionally, she was involved in softball as a pitcher and 3rd baseman.
When high school came around, Michelle found herself on her high school’s rodeo team and was a natural. She competed in amateur rodeo events during this time as well. When she caught the attention of scouts for college, she was offered two scholarships—one for basketball and one for rodeo.
“I can’t tell you why I decided to take the rodeo scholarship, but I did. It was in college that I became a barrel racer,” says Michelle.
Michelle’s Passion for Helping Horses Led Her Beyond Competing
Over the years, Michelle has made her mark in the rodeo world. Some of her most prestigious accomplishments include ranking top five in the WPRA, SDRA, and NRCA. From 2000-2013 she competed nationwide and was a peak performer in her events. However, Michelle’s passion for training horses and being an agent far outweighed her drive for competitive riding. And while she still enjoys the competition, it is no longer her priority.
My goal has never been to make the NFR. Although, I have placed in the top 20 or 25 in my events. Training is the number one priority for me. I try to keep rodeo fun. It’s like my vacation! I love the competition, but I love training and creating champion horses that bring joy to my clients more.
While Michelle still competes today throughout the summer months, she is pickier on which rodeos she chooses. Her rodeo horse, barn name Saucy, is the only horse she currently runs in barrel racing. Occasionally, she has another horse, Johnny Cash, whom she uses to compete in breakaway and roping runs.
The rest of her year is devoted to training horses for clients. During training seasons, she’ll run local rodeos in Texas occasionally where her brother, JJ Alley, also competes (again proving that horses are in her family’s blood). As a homebody, she prefers to be on her property training her horses and keeping busy around the farm.
Welcome to Down the Alley Performance Horses
Michelle’s 12-acre farm in Texas is the home base for Down the Alley Performance Horses, where she is the sole owner and trainer. Her barn can house anywhere from 10–25 horses at a time. Michelle prefers to keep at least 12 in training with her at once; she helps clients fix problematic horses or ready horses for their owners to begin competing.
Part of her training regime is working with clients to get their horses on SUCCEED for gut health support. Michelle knows that using SUCCEED is an integral part of preparing and working with the horses because a good digestive supplement is crucial to a horse’s performance.
Finding Success with SUCCEED
Many horses that train with Michelle at Down the Alley Performance Horses have often gone through strenuous situations, such as training, stalling at futurities, or hauling for hours on the road. Horses get stressed easily and, in fact, it is a leading cause of gut health problems in horses.
When Michelle noticed that one of her horses wasn’t eating very well, she looked for help that would actually target the problem and provide a lasting solution. She reached out to Mary Cap, her aunt and an experienced equine vet in New Mexico, for help. Her aunt recommended that she start using SUCCEED, a digestive supplement she was already well aware of and had suggested to multiple patients.
Within weeks of starting SUCCEED, Michelle noticed a huge improvement with that horse. She began trying the product on a couple of other horses and again saw huge improvements in their appetite, attitude, and appearance. From this point on, Michelle kept using SUCCEED daily for her horses and has been recommending it to all her clients since then.
Feeding SUCCEED pays off. When your horse stays eating, even during stressful training or hauling, your horse stays happy and performing to its best ability. Not only does it keep your horse looking and feeling great, but it’s one less stress that you as an owner or trainer have to worry about. And the best part is the horses love it!
Why Michelle Recommends SUCCEED for All Horses
If asked at a rodeo or on the road, Michelle will not hesitate to explain the benefits of SUCCEED for her horses in hopes of helping other riders care for theirs. She understands the sensitivity of a horse’s digestive system, no matter what age or performance level they are at, and the benefits that SUCCEED provides.
I have seen the difference SUCCEED makes in picky eaters, changing them into aggressive eaters. They clean up all their feed and stay eating whether at home, in training, stalling at futurities and shows, or hauling hours and hours on the rodeo road. They keep their weight on, even during strenuous schedules. Horses who’ve gotten loose stools when hauled stay regular on SUCCEED. Hard keepers turn into horses with no problem keeping weight on, even while in heavy training.
Feeding SUCCEED pays off. When your horse stays eating and full, even during training or hauling, you have a happy, healthy, content horse ready to perform at their best. It keeps your horses looking and feeling great, and it’s one less stress that you as an owner or trainer have to worry about.