It isn’t every day that horse trainers are able to take time off from the grind of horse training and step into the bright lights, but National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) professional Teddy Robinson did just that when he made a cameo in a Chevrolet commercial.
A local scout for commercials who was searching for old hand-me-down trucks near Robinson’s Oakview, California, home contacted him and asked if she could interview him about a truck he bought years ago. Robinson bought the truck brand new, and years later, his stepson, Tucker Allen, purchased that truck from him at age 16.
“That interview was sent to the directors in New York, and they contacted us to see if we would want to do [a commercial],” said Robinson, a seven-time NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Champion.
Robinson believes they were picked for this specific commercial because the Chevrolet truck he bought and then passed down is still used by his stepson today. The commercial shows clips of several father/son duos who also passed their trucks down to their sons, implying Chevrolet trucks are durable enough to last multiple generations.
Robinson said filming took place mid-June and lasted all day, with 100 people on the set.
“You don’t really know what’s happening when it’s happening; it is amazing how they do all these things and then piece it together,” Robinson said. With all that was filmed that day, the commercial available online briefly shows Robinson with his stepson for only five or 10 seconds; however, a more detailed commercial has been seen by industry participants on television in several markets.
With his stepson driving, Robinson did get to have a little fun on set. In the commercial, the truck is seen sliding sideways at 40-50 MPH, but what viewers can’t see is a set director in the truck with Robinson and his stepson, and a camera truck that drove beside them to catch all the action. Since safety was still a concern, everyone inside the vehicle had to have seatbelts on, and the driver’s hands were to be placed at “10 and 2” at all times.
“I was asking my stepson, ‘How did you learn to drive like that?’ and he said, ‘Oh, my big brother showed me,’ so I guess it was a good thing his brother showed him those tricks,” Robinson added with a chuckle.
With Hollywood not far from Robinson’s training stables, it might seem like location played a part in why he was picked for the commercial, but Robinson noted that the directors came out of New York.
“They do background checks and everything; I guess we just happened to be the lucky ones they picked,” he said.
Robinson is no stranger to the limelight. He holds the distinction of being one of the winningest reined cow horse riders of all time. After earning his first NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open title in 1987 on Nu Cash, he went on to top the prestigious event six more times piloting Nu Cash foals and took the World’s Greatest Horseman title twice. Robinson became a well-deserved member of the NRCHA Hall of Fame in 2009.
Although fame may have a negative effect on some people’s personalities, Robinson hasn’t let stardom get to his head. Instead, he is all the more humbled by this experience he had with his stepson.
Check out the shorter version of the commercial by clicking here!