Tag Archives: Reining

“Generation Z” Athletes Aiming to Shine at FEI World Equestrian Games Tryon 2018

Photo: Liz Gregg/FEI.

Lausanne (SUI), 17 August 2018 — Over 100 “Generation Z” athletes – born between the mid-1990s and early 2000s – have been named on the nominated entry list for next month’s FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, the pinnacle of equestrian sport, in North Carolina (USA).

Amongst these athletes are three 10-year-old vaulters who, alongside their fellow “Gen Zs” from 27 countries in Africa, Asia, Europe, North and South America and the Middle East, are bidding to represent their nation at the FEI World Equestrian Games™.

A total of 71 countries are included in the nominated entries, a massive increase on the 58 that contested the medals at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Kentucky 2010 when the multi-discipline event was first held outside Europe.

The full nominated entries (listed by discipline) for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, from which the final entries will be selected next month, is here: https://inside.fei.org/fei/fei-weg/2018.

The next and final stages in the Games entry process are the deadlines for definite entries: 3 September for the first week’s competition in Dressage, Eventing, Endurance and Reining, and 10 September for the second week’s events in Driving, Para-Dressage, Jumping and Vaulting.

With an anticipated 800 athletes and over 820 horses from six of the world’s seven continents scheduled to attend, the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 will be one of the biggest sporting events on US soil this year, and will be held at the Tryon International Equestrian Center, set against the stunning backdrop of the Blue Ridge Mountains.

Year of youth

Young equestrian athletes are really taking centre stage in 2018. Just one month after the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, 30 nations will send equestrians aged between 15-18 years to the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games held from 6 to 18 October 2018.

#BeOne

Equestrian fans, athletes and teams from across the globe are coming together to celebrate the sport as one and as part of the FEI campaign for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 – #BeOne.

To buy tickets for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018, go to https://tryon2018.com/tickets/event-tickets and for more information on the Games, visit www.Tryon2018.com and www.fei.org/events/fei-world-equestrian-games-tryon.

Media contact:

Shannon Gibbons
Media Relations and Communications Manager
shannon.gibbons@fei.org
+41 78 750 61 46

IHSA Members to Compete for 2018 NRHA Collegiate Reining Championship at NRHA Derby

Danielle Paulson and Juice owned by Andrew Wolf. Photo by alcookphoto.com.

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – June 26, 2018 – The National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Derby is an annual one-week event held in Oklahoma City, June 23 – July 1. The competition showcases the world’s best reining horses and riders and attracts thousands of spectators each year. One of the highlights of the Derby is the Collegiate Reining Championship scheduled for 1 p.m. Friday, June 29, at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City, featuring the top college riders from North America.

This year, four standout Intercollegiate Horse Shows Association (IHSA) riders are slated to compete in the Collegiate Reining Championship. The riders include Morgan Knerr, Danielle Paulson, Kendall Woellmer and Travis Fortune. The draw takes place Thursday at 1 p.m. The warm-up starts Friday at 1 p.m. with the class kicking off at 1:30 p.m.

Morgan Knerr is the IHSA 2018 NRHA Individual Open Reining champion and is a freshman at the University of Findlay studying pharmacy. From Plain City, Ohio, her parents are actively involved in reining and she has grown up in the sport. Before joining the University of Findlay, Knerr rode at Autumn Rose with Ollie and Debbie Griffiths. She has held multiple positions as an NRHyA officer, including president in 2017, vice president in 2016 and secretary in 2015.

“Showing in the Collegiate catch ride is a great opportunity,” Knerr said. “I’m really excited because it will be a completely different experience. I’m really looking forward to it!”

Danielle Paulson is from Rochester, Minnesota and is a junior at the University of Wisconsin River Falls. She qualified for IHSA Nationals for the first time this year and earned the 2018 IHSA Nationals AQHA Team Reining Open Reining championship and was third in 2018 NRHA Individual Open Reining. Paulson has shown American Quarter Horses for 10 years, this is her first year competing in reining. She credits her coach, Janie Huot, for giving her a leg up in the sport.

“I am so excited; it’s such a blessing to compete at this huge event,” Paulson said. “(Competing in) IHSA is the only time I’ve reined in my life. I hope to ride my best on some amazing horses that they’re providing for us.”

Travis Fortune is from Booneville, Indiana and studies at Murray State University. Fortune finished second in the NRHA Open Reining at Western Semi-Finals and fourth the 2018 IHSA Nationals.

“I am really excited about competing at the Derby,” said Fortune. “For me, it’s the fact that I made it there. The first horse show that I reined at was in October for IHSA. To go to Nationals and be fourth and qualify for the Derby for the Collegiate Championship is just really awesome.”

Kendall Woellmer is a sophomore from Sedona, Arizona and attends West Texas A&M University where she is majoring in agriculture communications and minoring in English. The talented rider competes in both Western and hunter seat. Woellmer earned the 2018 IHSA Sportsmanship Award and the 2018 IHSA Versatility Rider Award at the IHSA Nationals. Along with top placings in the hunter seat divisions, Woellmer finished third in the AQHA High Point Western Rider fifth in NRHA Individual Open Reining.

“I am very honored to compete against some of the best collegiate riders in the nation,” Woellmer said.

For more information on this year’s Derby, visit www.nrhaderby.com.

For more information, go to IHSAinc.com or contact media@IHSAinc.com.

Quarter Horses Take the Reins over Memorial Day at Jacksonville Equestrian Center

Photo courtesy of SD Photography.

Jacksonville, FL (June 1, 2018) – The Florida Quarter Horse Association hosted a three-day showing extravaganza at the Jacksonville Equestrian Center May 26-28, 2018.  High point awards were given out and over 200 classes offered something for everyone to enjoy.

Showcasing the versatility of the American Quarter Horse, the show offered a full slate of classes including trail, reining, and conformation.  On Friday the show organizers had a clinic for working hunter and equitation over fences and a trainers’ hospitality pizza party held at the Arena Café. Over the course of the weekend ten high point awards were awarded to horse and rider combinations.  Niftys Rock Star, ridden by Lauren Neily, won the Open VRH, Hot Chippin Charley, ridden by Brenda Baker, took home the Open Performance high point, and Sinceerly took home Halter Mare, while there was a tie for Halter Gelding between PF The Only One and Homerun Stats.

Coming up next for the Jacksonville Equestrian Center is the First Coast Classical Dressage show on June 23-24, followed by an all breed horse show on July 14th.

For more information about the Jacksonville Equestrian Center, visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4215
tjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Carolina Classic at TIEC Boasts Top National and International Reining Competition

Jose Vazquez and Like Shiner. Photo Credit ©Waltenberry, Inc.

Mill Spring, NC – May 21, 2018 – Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) hosted the Carolina Classic at TIEC as the first reining competition on property since the inception of the venue, showcasing more than 600 entries to preview the venue and enjoy the expanded schedule.

Competition was held in the newly-constructed Indoor Arena onsite, where the sport will once again be hosted during world-class competition in September for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG). Continuing a twenty-seven-year legacy of the Carolina Classic Derby, the 28th installment, with an expanded schedule under its new name, included two-part USEF Selection Trials, $15,000 FEI CRI 3* competition, the Carolina Classic Open and Non-Pro Derbies, the Atlantic Breeder’s Incentive Derby, and a double slate of National Reining Horse Association ancillary classes, American Quarter Horse Association classes and USA Reining classes.

In Friday’s Non-Pro Derby and Atlantic Breeder’s Incentive Derby saw USA’s Jose Vasquez ride Like Shiner to the top of the Atlantic Breeder’s Incentive Derby single purse system list after producing a 223-point run in the Level 4 Non-Pro Derby, also conquering the Prime Time Non-Pro Derby. Five additional winners were honored in their respective levels: Frederick Christen (USA) aboard his own Xtra Voodoo Step, scoring 215 in the Master Non-Pro Derby; Mariana Vasquez (USA) aboard Wimpy Little Tejano on a score of 221 in the Level 3 Non-Pro Derby; Alicia Rapp and her own Magnificent Dreamer slid to a score of 215.5 in the Level 2 Limited Non-Pro Derby and the Level 1 Non-Pro Derby as well.

The Carolina Classic Open Derby on Saturday saw Peter DeFreitas (USA) guide Double Run Farm’s Sweet Daisy Surprise to victory in Level 4 competition on a score of 218, while Level 3 top horse-and-rider pair was Jeremy Gates (USA) and Ingrid Rund’s Watchitgalsgottagun on a score of 217. The pair also rode to the top of the $12,000 Atlantic Breeder’s Incentive Derby, finishing with top honors on the single purse system list. The Carolina Classic Open Derby Level 2 and Level 1 podiums featured an All-American, three-way tie for first on a score of 216.5: Dany Pelletier aboard Parker Minchin’s Conquered This Town, Tricia Tillman aboard Kimberly Tillman’s Boomin in Lace, and Nathan Morton aboard Misty Yelton’s ARC Shesa Walla.

Yelton, whose horse ended up in third place on the single purse system after a win in the Level 2 Open Derby, enjoyed a win for the second year in a row. “It’s surreal. For one horse to have won it last year, and turn around and have a different horse win it this year, is unbelievable. With the same rider, same owner and two different horses doesn’t happen very often. Two years before, we actually tied to win, and then lost it in a runoff, so technically we could have won three years in a row! So it’s been unreal.”

As a local based in Rutherfordton, NC, Yelton explained that hosting western disciplines at TIEC is significant for the region. She explained, “The area has always had a rich tradition in the Hunter/Jumper disciplines, you know, when George Morris trained the Olympic Show Jumping team here, but we have a lot of Western competitors here, too. With Reining being in a Western saddle and Western tack, that reaches to that demographic of people that might not have ever thought about coming over here,” she said of the packed crowds who attended the inaugural event at TIEC.

“People I’ve talked to at times feel like they don’t know enough about English disciplines or Jumping to come out, but they know more about Reining even if they’ve never competed, because most of those horses are Quarter Horses,” Yelton continued. “Quarter Horses are actually the most popular breed in the United States and the world, so that’s what most of the people around here have.”

Yelton observed that since Western disciplines encompass the majority of the general public’s experiences with horses and most non-competitive, recreational riders prefer Western tack, bringing a recognizable sport to TIEC further strengthens its already significant appeal to equestrians and non-equestrians alike.

“The majority of recreational and hobby riding is done in a Western saddle, so Reining is a great introduction to riding. The majority of those horses that are taking you down the trails are Quarter Horses, and that’s the breed that excels in the Reining world. To bring that sport to this area, I think opens you up to a whole new market of horse people.”

The Carolina Classic was first hosted in Raleigh, North Carolina before moving to Williamston, North Carolina for the majority of its history thus far, recounted Yelton. “For Mike [Hancock] to trust this venue to do it [the Carolina Classic] speaks volumes of his faith in the team’s ability to host it here. The competitors can’t wait to come back next year, and people are already asking about reservations for RV spots for next year! I think it’s been a great success.”

Yelton concluded, “The facility is amazing, the footing was awesome – some of the best in the world – the stalls are incredible, the staff, from the show office to stabling to the grounds crew and security have all been over-the-top accommodating for anything we needed or wanted. Even having a veterinary service on grounds, actually standing there watching the competition and cheering you on is pretty incredible, too.”

The FEI CRI 3* Reining Test Event and USEF Selection Trial saw a tie for top honors shared between Dan Huss aboard Frederick Christen’s Ms Dreamy and Jordan Larson aboard ARC Gunnabeabigstar, owned by HDC Quarter Horses, both finishing with a composite score of 450 points. Bronze went to Cade McCutcheon after he guided McQuay Stables’ Custom Made Gun to a two-round score of 446 points and triumphed as the youngest FEI competitor at the Carolina Classic at TIEC.

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

USA Takes Top Three at World Equestrian Games FEI CRI 3* Reining Test Event

Dan Huss and Ms Dreamy. Photo Credit ©Sportfot.

TRYON, NC, USA – May 13, 2018 – The all-American podium stood tall after the completion of two days of FEI CRI 3* competition hosted at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC), in Tryon, North Carolina, alongside the first installment of the Carolina Classic at TIEC. The week served as the eighth and final Test Event ahead of the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 coming to the venue this fall, from September 11-23.

FEI combinations took to the newly constructed Indoor Arena, located at the main entrance of TIEC, to test their skills against some of the discipline’s biggest names from Thursday, May 10-13. The first day of competition saw 22 competitors contest the USEF Selection Trial First Go on Thursday, May 10, before welcoming back 20 of the original entries. Ultimately, Jordan Larson (USA) and Dan Huss (USA) both walked away with the blue ribbon, tying on a composite score of 450.

Huss entered the second round sitting in first place after scoring 224 points aboard Frederick Christen’s Ms Dreamy, a 2010 Quarter Horse mare (Magnum Chic Dream x A Gal With A Gun). Larson improved upon his first-round score of 222.0 to share top honors riding ARC Gunnabeabigstar, a 2011 Quarter Horse stallion (Gunnatrashya x Wimpys Little Chic) owned by HDC Quarter Horses, to an impressive second-round score of 228. The young Cade McCutcheon (USA) followed just behind on a total score of 446 points aboard Custom Made Gun, a 2011 Quarter Horse stallion (Colonels Smoking Gun x Custom Made Dunit) owned by McQuay Stables, after receiving a 222.5 in the first round and a 223.5 in the final competition.

All three riders are hoping to return to represent the United States at the FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) in September and Huss commented that he’s been waiting for the right horse to come along in order to pursue contention.

“Basically for me, I was just waiting for the right horse,” he explained. “I usually share [Ms Dreamy] with a Non-Pro, but obviously the mare is too old to do the derbies, so Fredrick [Christen] said I could show her at the FEI level. It would mean a lot to me to represent the U.S. I came with the intention of winning here. I’m not a guy that has a big ego, but I wanted to win here and I want to win at the WEG. I have some room to improve yet and I’d have to beat my fellow teammates because they’re tough.”

Huss, of Scottsdale, AZ, complimented the TIEC show organizers for hosting the venue’s first reining event. “I think Tryon did a great job hosting their first reining competition. From what I understand they’re putting stalls in here in the Indoor Arena, so it’ll all be under one roof and I think it’ll be pretty nice.”

Larson, a seasoned WEG competitor based in Valley View, TX, echoed Huss’ sentiments about what a USA-hosted Games means, stating, “It’s awesome to have the WEG return to the US. It’s really cool to be able to represent our country here at home. It was awesome to go to France, but there’s even more pressure I think to represent well here, so we’ve got our work cut out to get ready for the next one and be even better.”

Commenting on his significant improvement in score between the first and second round, Larson had nothing but praise for his mount. “This horse is a good one,” he emphasized. “He’s been really good to me. It seems like he keeps getting better and better and when it counts he’s at his best. In the first round I tried to play it safe and he was kind of messing around with me a little bit, but when I call on him for everything he is great.”

The pressure of the USA team selections definitely weighed heavily on all competitor’s minds, Larson explained, saying, “There’s always a lot of pressure. We have really high expectations of ourselves and because we’re hoping to be on the team to represent the USA, the pressure goes up,” he admitted. “But, that’s what we thrive on, so we have fun doing it.”

Cade McCutcheon, whose 18th birthday is in a few short weeks, is also looking for the chance to represent his country, with his sights set on being the youngest reining competitor to ever compete in the history of the WEG.

The Aubrey, TX native ran the stallion Custom Made Gun, whom his family raised and his grandparents own, to third place after putting in a near perfect round. “It means a lot to come here with the likes of Jordan [Larson], Casey [Deary], my dad [Tom McCutcheon], Shawn [Flarida] – I’ve never had to do that. I’ve always been in the Non-Pro, which isn’t easy, but it’s easier than this. It meant a lot and it was a big honor to just show here, and a bigger honor to be where I’m at.”

Riding beside his father, WEG Gold Medalist Tom McCutcheon this week, the young talent commented, “It’s a cool deal being a third generation reining competitor. Not a lot of people can say that. I just hope I do as well as they did if I make it on the USA Team. It means a lot to me to be able to do this sport with my family. It makes it way more fun, and they have the experience that will help me get through the team and the individual phases.”

Further discussing his family legacy, McCutcheon also noted the incredible accomplishments of his multi-generational equestrian family. Despite being the youngest rider in the FEI CRI 3* this week, McCutcheon commented on the benefit of the experience as he looks towards a bright future.

“Maybe there’s a little more pressure coming from a reining family, but I don’t think very much. My parents don’t put any pressure on me, and it wouldn’t make a difference to them if I marked a 208 or a 220, as long as I’m having fun.”

For more information, visit www.Tryon2018.com.

Larson and Huss Tie for Gold, McCutcheon Bronze at WEG Reining Test Event

Larson and Arc Gunnabeabigstar (Photo by Waltenberry)

Mill Spring, N.C. – In an important step towards being named to the U.S. Reining Squad for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ (WEG) Tryon 2018, U.S. reining athletes contested the WEG Reining Test Event and USEF Selection Trial this week at the Tryon International Equestrian Center on Thursday, May 10 and Saturday, May 12.

With scores compiled from both evening’s rounds, it was Jordan Larson and Dan Huss leading the way for a gold-medal tie and ending on a combined score of 450.0. Larson (Valley View, Texas) and Arc Gunnabeabigstar, a seven-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by HDC Quarter Horses USA, LLC, sat fourth after Thursday’s round with a score of 222.0. Huss (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and Ms Dreamy, an eight-year-old Quarter Horse mare owned by Christen R. Frederick, won Thursday’s round on a score of 224.0.

Larson was part of the gold-medal U.S. Reining Team for WEG in Normandy, France in 2014 and is excited about the possibility of representing the U.S. again. “It was cool to go to France, but I think it is even more pressure to represent well here. We have our work cut out to get ready. That horse is a good one. [Arc Gunnabeabigstar] has been really good to me and it seems like he just keeps getting better. When it counts, he’s his best. When I ask him for everything, he’s his best.”

“For me, I was just waiting for a nice horse,” laughed Huss. “She is a Magnum daughter out of a Gunner mare. It would mean a lot to me [to represent the U.S. at WEG]. I’m not a guy with a big ego, but I came here to win this and I want to win the WEG. I have some room to improve. I have to beat my fellow teammates, because they are tough.”

A third-generation reiner and on the cusp of his 18th birthday, Cade McCutcheon claimed the bronze medal at the USEF Selection Trial. McCutcheon (Aubrey, Texas) and Custom Made Gun, a seven-year-old Quarter Horse stallion owned by Tim and Colleen McQuay, were tied for second after Thursday’s round. The combination held their own in the second round to end on a score of 446.0. Should McCutcheon’s place on the U.S. Reining Team for WEG be finalized, he would become the youngest U.S. athlete to represent reining at the Games.

“It means a lot to come here with the likes of Jordan [Larson] or Casey [Deary], my dad, and Shawn [Flarida],” said McCutcheon. “I’ve always been in the non-pro, which isn’t easy, but it’s a lot easier than this. It is a big honor to get to show here and a bigger honor to be where I am at. It means a lot to be able to do this sport with my family; it makes it way more fun. My parents don’t put any pressure on me. It wouldn’t make a difference to them if I marked a 208 or a 220, as long as I am having fun.”

Full results for the WEG Reining Test Event and USEF Selection Trial can be found here.

From the US Equestrian Communications Department

TIEC Hosts Carolina Classic and World Equestrian Games Reining Test Event, May 8-13, 2018

The Carolina Classic at Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) marks the first ever reining competition held at the venue, and the event is also serving as the selection trials for Team USA. All competitions will be held at the Indoor Arena, and all Carolina Classic competition is free and open for the public to attend. Concessions and vendors are available on hand.

The show’s expanded schedule also includes the Carolina Classic Open and Non-Pro Derbies and Atlantic Breeders Incentive Derby along with a double slate of National Reining Horse Association ancillary classes, American Quarter Horse Association classes and USA Reining classes.

Please visit www.tryon.com or call (828)-863-1000 for more information.

Reining Horses at Jacksonville Equestrian Center Compete for over $130,000 in Prizes

Photo courtesy of Waltenberry Photography and Videography of the Horse.

Jacksonville, FL (March 9, 2018) — The Jacksonville Equestrian Center hosted the Florida Reining Horse Association (FRHA) Classic February 20-25. The annual competition paid out more than $130,000 in added prize monies.

The multi-day reining competition offered 75 classes across multiple divisions from short stirrup and youth to amateur, non-pro, novice, green and open. The event also included US Para Reining Grades 1-4 and World Para Reining Grades 1-4, which are for athletes with a physical disability.

“We had roughly 450 horses here,” said Karen Randall, the show secretary from Lockport, New York. “We had more exhibitors from outside of Florida than from the state of Florida.”  Riders hauled from as far west as Texas and Oklahoma and as far north as New York and Pennsylvania and points beyond. Each exhibitor had hopes of winning cash prizes, one of 35 championship buckles, a saddle or one of nearly 600 other prizes.

The Jacksonville Equestrian Center’s facilities contribute to the event’s popularity. The facility offers more than 400 permanent stalls and a large indoor coliseum, which includes a 123,000 square foot arena with permanent seating for 3,700.  “The Equestrian Center goes above and beyond for us,” Randall said. “The facility and staff are simply fabulous to work with.” FRHA will host another event at the facility March 23-25 of this year and has already signed a contract for events in 2019.

The Jacksonville Equestrian Center is widely known for hosting family-friendly, exciting events all year long, which are open to the public. Events range from reining to barrel racing, dressage, dog agility competitions and more. The next event scheduled for this month is the USDAA Agility Trial on March 9-11.

After that, the facility will be open to the public for Community Schooling – All Barrels on March 13. Barrel racers can take advantage of the opportunity to ride in the Main Arena in the evening. That takes place just ahead of the National Barrel Horse Association (NBHA) Shamrock Showdown. This high-speed barrel race will pay out an estimated $125,000 in cash prizes.

The Jacksonville Equestrian Center is a favorite destination for equestrian competitions, recreational events, and social events for the community. The 80-acre facility, which is easily accessible from major highways in Jacksonville, Florida, also features miles of hiking and riding trails and a picnic pavilion. For more information and to find out about other upcoming events, please visit www.jaxequestriancenter.com.

Jacksonville Equestrian Center
Tim Jones
904-255-4225
timjones@coj.net
13611 Normandy Blvd.
Jacksonville, FL 32221

Tryon to Host Carolina Classic Derby and Team USA Reining Selections for WEG

Photo by Waltenberry, Inc.

TRYON, N.C. – February 1, 2018 – Tryon International Equestrian Center (TIEC) announced today that it will host the 28th annual Carolina Classic Derby at its facility on May 8-13, 2018, the first reining event to be held at the 1,600-acre venue.

Renamed the Carolina Classic at Tryon International Equestrian Center, the event will also host the Selection Trials for the Reining USA Team in preparation for the FEI World Equestrian Games™ Tryon 2018 (WEG), as well as the $15,000 CRI3* WEG Reining Test Event. The show’s expanded schedule also includes the Carolina Classic Open and Non Pro Derbies and Atlantic Breeders Incentive Derby along with a double slate of National Reining Horse Association ancillary classes, American Quarter Horse Association classes and USA Reining classes.

Mike Hancock, longtime producer of the event, was glad to see this next step for the Carolina Classic. “After 27 years of producing the Carolina Classic Derby, I am proud to see the event move to another level. The facility at Tryon is spectacular! I know the management team will do an outstanding job producing an event that will be exciting and fun-filled for the exhibitors. It is good to see that our history of Southern hospitality will continue!”

Mark Bellissimo, Co-Founder and CEO of Tryon International Equestrian Center, said, “We are incredibly honored to be the new host of the Carolina Classic and expand our footprint to welcome Western disciplines to Tryon International Equestrian Center. With the addition of our covered arena, we look forward to delivering world-class reining competitions at our venue year-round and are very proud to launch our reining program with such a distinguished show and its impressive team.”

For more information about the Carolina Classic at Tryon International Equestrian Center, please contact Pro Management, Inc. at +1 (580) 759-2572.

Admission and parking to the Carolina Classic at Tryon International Equestrian Center is free and open to the public. For WEG tickets, event schedules or to sign up for the e-newsletter featuring the latest WEG updates, please visit www.tryon2018.com or follow @Tryon2018 on social media. Tryon International Equestrian Center at Tryon Resort is located at 25 International Boulevard, Mill Spring, NC 28756.

Mills, McCutcheon, Reynolds Crowned at USEF Reining National Championships

Photo: Matt Mills and Wimps Cool Breeze (Waltenberry)

Lexington, Ky. – Three 2017 USEF Reining National Championship titles were up for grabs at the Tulsa Reining Classic at Expo Square in Tulsa, Okla. Matt Mills and Wimps Cool Breeze claimed top honors in the Adequan $10,000 Added USEF Open National Championship presented by Markel Insurance. In the $2,000 Added USEF Youth National Championship, Kalena Reynolds and Gun Whiz It won the 13 & Under division, while Cade McCutcheon and REF Sturgis were crowned the champions in the 14-18 division.

In the Adequan $10,000 Added USEF Open National Championship presented by Markel Insurance, Mills (Scottsdale, Ariz.) and Wimps Cool Breeze performed a great round across the board to impress the judges as they performed pattern nine. Mills and Janice Dickson’s seven-year-old Quarter Horse stallion earned a score of 221.5 to win the championship.

“I think the horse really circled well. It felt like a round where nothing stood out more than anything else. It was a really solid round from start to finish, but if I have to pick something, I would say the circles were very good,” Mills said of his ride on Wimps Cool Breeze. “I have had this horse going for quite a while, and he has always been good in the show ring.”

Mills last won a USEF national championship title in 2006 and was happy to add another accolade to his resume. “It feels great and feels great for the owners. This is their second experience with an FEI/USEF horse. … We are aiming for the WEG [the FEI World Equestrian Games] next year.”

Casey Deary (Weatherford, Texas) finished second and third after finishing one point apart on his two mounts. Deary and Reeboks Rerun, his son Owen Deary’s 15-year-old Quarter Horse gelding, took the reserve champion title with a score of 219.5, while he and Who Dat Hot Chic, Neiberger Performance Horses LLC’s seven-year-old Quarter Horse mare, finished third with a score of 218.5.

Fresh off his trip to the 2017 SVAG FEI World Reining Championships for Juniors and Young Riders, McCutcheon (Aubrey, Texas) rode REF Sturgis to the win in the 14-18 division of the $2,000 Added USEF Youth National Championship. He and Anne-Marie Burns’s five-year-old Quarter Horse gelding had a solid performance of pattern 12 to receive a score of 219.0.

“He was really good. Easy. His circles were good, he stopped well, and the whole round was pretty dang good,” McCutcheon said of his first-ever ride on REF Sturgis. “It feels good. This was my first time in this division, so it was fun to do something new.”

Dani Latimer (Marietta, Okla.) was McCutcheon’s teammate on the Platinum Performance U.S. Young Rider Team at the world championships, and she was not far behind him. She and Sparklin Nite, Elaine Latimer’s five-year-old Quarter Horse stallion, scored 217.5 to be named the reserve champion. Blair Thompson (Amarillo, Texas) and Whiz N Chica Dee, her own eight-year-old Quarter Horse gelding, finished third with a score of 214.0.

In the $2,000 Added USEF Youth National Championship 13 & Under division, Reynolds (Whitesboro, Texas) and Gun Whiz It laid down a good run of pattern 12 to finish atop the leaderboard. Reynolds and Tammy Reynolds’s six-year-old Quarter Horse mare won with a score of 212.5.

“It was very good; we were together on all maneuvers. She was really with me,” Reynolds said. “It’s really amazing! I’m very thankful. I haven’t had this mare very long, but we have gotten along well together.”

Carlee McCutcheon (Aubrey, Texas) and Whatta Royal Vintage, Tom and Mandy McCutcheon’s eight-year-old Quarter Horse mare, were the reserve champions with a score of 208.0.

Find more information at www.tulsareining.com.

By Kathleen Landwehr, US Equestrian Communications Department