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RUNTIME: 13:10

Cody BigTobacco is a new jockey in North America’s original extreme sport: Indian Relay — where jockeys ride horses bareback and jump from one horse to another in the middle of the race.

Take an intimate verité visit to a fascinating and little-known world: the dangerous and high-stakes game of Indian Relay.

In Blackfoot country, they call Indian Relay “North America’s original extreme sport.” Jockeys bareback gallop their horses around a track, jumping off one and on to another in a chaotic melee of horses and handlers at “the exchange”. Accidents happen. Simply finishing a race demands masterful skill and courage.

Siksika horseman Allison RedCrow dreams of bringing a team to the “greatest outdoor show on Earth” – the Calgary Stampede – so he and his people can show the world their unparalleled skill on horseback. 

Our cameras follow Allison and his new jockey, Cody BigTobacco, over the course of a year as they assemble a team of horses, train them for the relay race and finally make their debut at the Calgary Stampede.  Their team, Old Sun, will face the best riders in the Blackfoot Confederacy, many of them veteran competitors from Montana. Fast Horse puts the audience on the back of a galloping horse, an exhilarating POV experience that captures the thrill and risk of this white-knuckle sport.

But our cameras also capture the touching bond Cody and Allison have with their horses. Witness, with intimate proximity, the committed effort these majestic animals demand from their riders and handlers. We see the horses accept their role and learn the complex movements of the race.

And through this process, we come to understand and respect the skills of horsemanship, which have been passed down for generations and remain intact.

With a heart-pumping climax, experience the final race at the Calgary Stampede from Cody’s own perspective. And just as promised, learn just how unpredictable and dangerous the Indian Relay can be.

Winner of the Short Film Special Jury Award for Directing at Sundance 2019: Alexandra Lazarowich

Fast Horse won the Best Documentary Work Short Format award at imagineNATIVE 2018.

Credits (Click to expand)

In loving memory of Thomas Many Guns

Allison RedCrow
Cody Big Tobacco
Mark Big Tobacco
Racey RedCrow

Directed by
Alexandra Lazarowich

Produced by
Niobe Thompson

Edited by
Sarah Taylor

Cinematography by
aAron Munson
Daron Donahue
Sergio Olivares
Craigery Dennis

Production Manager
Sandra Tober

Assistant Editor
Krystal Moss

Original Music by
Jonathan Kawchuk

Robert Grieve

Music Mix
Dennis Patterson

Calgary Exhibition and Stampede Ltd.

Additional Music by
Blackfoot Crossing Singers
Radford Blackrider
James Blackrider
Herman Yellow Old Woman
Randy Doore
Layne Healy
Ardell Scout

Sound Recordists
Philip Dransfeld
Jamie Kidd
Alex Mitchell

Sound Design & Mix
Johnny Blerot

Color Correction
Zachary Cox

Translation by
Daphne Maistoina

Indian Relay Teams Also Featured
Team Carlson
Lone Wolf
Star School

Special Thanks
Alison RedCrow and Family
Jerry Holdbrook
Jim and Carol Mason
Steve McDonough
Maggie Scofield
Carol Murray
Thyrone Powderface
Tyrone Potts
Okan Warriors
Travis Mcguire
Tyler Leather
Calgary Stampede
Siksika Nation

Produced with the Assistance of the Government of Alberta, Alberta Media Fund

Produced with the Participation of the Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit

Produced in Association with CBC
General Manger, Programming – Sally Catto
Executive Director Unscripted Content - Jennifer Dettman
Senior Director, Documentary - Sandra Kleinfeld
Director of Production, Unscripted Content - Alexandra Lane Executive in Charge of Production,
CBC Docs - Lesley Birchard

A Handful of Films production