A World Championship in the National Reining Horse Association is one of the most sought-after accolades in the reining horse industry. Exhibitors traverse the highways competing all year at events to earn money that go towards the title race.
The 2021 World and Reserve World Champions will be recognized next month during the Four Sixes Ranch NRHA Derby presented by Markel. On June 18, at 6:15 p.m., those titlists will be presented with their commemorative Montana Silversmiths buckles during the buckle ceremony in the Sale Arena at the Oklahoma City Fairgrounds.
“The NRHA Board of Directors knows how important the World Championship race is to our members, and worked together to plan an appropriate way to honor them,” noted Christa Morris-Stone, NRHA Assistant Commissioner. “They felt that recognizing these members during the reining industry’s second-largest event was not only appropriate, but it would allow these accomplishments to be celebrated by each winner’s family, friends, and peers.”
In addition to the buckle presentation to the World and Reserve World Champions, the Top 20 Owners, Professionals, and Non Pros will be recognized. “We will have a special memento for those individuals who made the Top 20 lists, and we will also recognize all the Top 10 winners on screen,” Morris-Stone said.
World & Reserve World Champions
- Open World Champion – Shines Like Spook & Ann Fonck
- Open Reserve World Champion – Cody Rooster Delmaso & Klaus Lechner
- Int. Open World Champion – Mr Gun WR San Jo & Tiara Van Dongen
- Int. Open Reserve World Champion – HA Handsome Harry & Patryk Peszke
- Ltd. Open World Champion – Show Stopping Juice & Jesse Gentile/Julia Beth Henderson
- Rookie Pro. World Champion – Dun It Smoking Gun & Alex Gerard Case
- Rookie Pro. Reserve World Champion – Found By Mistress & Taylor Davis
- Non Pro World Champion – Nikolai Stiller & Hollywood Gunrunner
- Non Pro Reserve World Champion – Adrienne Speidel & ARC Walla Smart
- Int. Non Pro World Champion – Raeanna Thayn & Roseswhiz
- Int. Non Pro Reserve World Champion – Michael Hancock & Nics Custom Dually
- Ltd. Non Pro World Champion – Emerson Madonia & This Chic Is Dreamy
- Ltd. Non Pro Reserve World Champion – Sydney Weaver & Whizards Little Step
- Prime Time Non Pro World Champion – Parker MIchin & Conquered This Town
- Prime Time Non Pro Reserve World Champion – Shawn Reynolds & Shiny Gunman
- Nov. Horse Open L1 World Champion – DP Docs Misstrash & Peter DeFreitas
- Nov. Horse Open L1 Reserve World Champion – Dreaming Of Guns & Bobby Avila Jr.
- Nov. Horse Open L2 World Champion – Dreaming Of Guns & Bobby Avila Jr.
- Nov. Horse Open L2 Reserve World Champion – Good Friday For Guns & Jesse Gentile
- Nov. Horse Open L3 World Champion – DP Docs Misstrash & Peter DeFreitas
- Nov. Horse Open L3 Reserve World Champion – Ruf N Trouble Whiz & Josh Murphy
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L1 World Champion – Lisa Bricker & Lotta Mobster
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L1 Reserve World Champion – Abby Jennings & Low Voltage Chic
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L2 World Champion – Kyla Thurlow & Kachina Olena Tag
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L2 Reserve World Champion – Lynn Miller & Gata Chromed Magnum
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L3 World Champion – Kyla Thurlow & Kachina Olena Tag
- Nov. Horse Non Pro L3 Reserve World Champion – Kary Key & Cant Spook Me
- Youth 13 & Under World Champion – Becca Schaffhauser & Dun Got My Rest
- Youth 13 & Under Reserve World Champion – Reed Selner & Whiz Good To Go
- Youth 14 – 18 World Champion – Shelby Jane Lynch & Jac N Jewels Spark
- Youth 13 – 18 Reserve World Champion – Gracie Mae Stingle & Lucky Little Seven
Complete Top 10 and Top 20 lists can be found here.
The celebration begins at 5 p.m. with cocktails and hors d’oeuvres. Admission to the Buckle Ceremony is free of charge, and the event is open to everyone, but Morris-Stone asked that people, especially award recipients, RSVP at NRHA.com/RSVP to help with a catering headcount.
Any updates to this event or others held during the 6666 Ranch NRHA Derby presented by Markel will be posted on the event’s schedule at NRHADerby.com and distributed through NRHA’s various news channels.
The Southeastern Reining Horse Association’s Main Event, slated for May 27–29 at the Senator Bob Martin Agri Center in Williamston, North Carolina, will be extra special in 2022. That’s because the show has elected to designate four derby classes as Reining Horse Foundation events.
“SERHA has been blessed with many members who have been supported by the Reining Horse Foundation, either by way of the Dale Wilkinson Memorial Crisis Fund or by youth scholarships,” noted Terri Mainey, SERHA Secretary. “In our gratitude for the RHF’s assistance, we hope to bring a light to the RHF’s mission with our members and those in our communities.”
To work toward that goal, SERHA will donate $5 for each individual rider entry in the Open and Non Pro Derbies to the RHF. Classes included are the Reining Horse Foundation Open and Non Pro Derbies in Levels 4 and 2, and the Reining Horse Foundation Open and Non Pro 8 & Up Derbies in Levels 4 and 2. Championship buckles, sponsored by Steven Marbry Performance Horses, will be presented, and the Level 4 Open and Non Pro Champions will win tables designed and made by Phillip and Michelle Waugh.
As a challenge to attract more entries, Terri and her husband, John Mainey, have pledged to match the donation made to the RHF.
“We applaud the Southeastern Reining Horse Association for this fundraising effort,” said Leslie Baker, executive director of the RHF. “Their leadership will help introduce the RHF to a broader audience, and the derbies are sure to be a fun addition to the Main Event show. We cannot overstate our appreciation for everyone involved in creating ways to give back to the reining community.”
There will be several new additions to the 2022 event, including:
- Six Smokin Bones will be cooking for the Annual SERHA meeting. Six Smokin Bones will also provide dinner following the Derby on Saturday. Paying homage to Mike Hancock’s Carolina Classic tradition, there will be “Breakfast for Supper.”
- The Youth and Para-reining entries are sponsored, and all youth will receive ribbons and prizes.
- The Youth will enjoy a free meal on Saturday evening.
- Langdon Farms will sponsor an ice cream social by Sisters II.
- Championship buckles, sponsored by George and Carol Bell and the SERHA Board, will be awarded in the Green Reiner 1 and 2.
- Trophies will be presented in the Rookie 1, 2, and Prime Time.
- The event includes a raffle, with SERHA Youth in charge of raffle ticket sales.
“The reining community is coming together to make this a tremendous show. There are many exhibitors on the East Coast who are not familiar with the RHF, and we hope that by presenting a quality show with the Reining Horse Foundation as the named benefactor, these exhibitors will learn how our industry works together in helping reiners in need through the Dale Wilkinson Memorial Crisis Fund, providing scholarships for continuing education, and perpetuating the sport’s history through the NRHA Hall of Fame,” Mainey said.
Mainey added there are several sponsors of the Main Event Reining Horse Foundation Derbies, including Tim Anderson and Kim Niven, Rick Clark and Clark’s Pump N Shop, Mirjam and Andrea Stillo, Mike Hancock and Family, Jillane and Wesley Brown of Browe Construction, Lucinda Human of Star H Equine, George and Carol Bell Performance Horses, Platinum Performance, Matt Murphy and Bar M Performance Horses and Parker Minchin.
For more information about the SERHA Main Event, visit serha.org/may-show
On May 15, 2022, National Reining Horse Association Hall of Famer Dick Pieper passed away at the age of 82.
Dick was born on his family’s farm in Southern Ohio, where they raised cattle, sheep, and horses – both draft and saddle horses – that were used on a daily basis. Upon high school graduation, Dick attended Ohio State University and served a tour of duty in the United States Navy.
While life kept him busy, he still spent every spare moment riding and training horses. Early on, he turned to reining horses and held NRHA member number 113.
In 1977, he won the NRHA Futurity on Spanish Mountain, then returned two years later, in 1979, to take Co-Reserve Championship honors on Cee Blair Masota.
Between 1976 and 1995, Dick rode 23 NRHA Futurity finalists and was a top twenty money earner for many years following. In 1985, he showed Miss Cee Blair to the title of NRHA World Champion Open Horse, setting a record for money earned in one year that was not broken until 1994 when her son, Cee Blair Sailer, also trained by Dick, established an even higher record. In 1991, Dick showed Texas Kicker to American Quarter Horse Association World Champion Junior Reining Horse setting another record score of 228 in the finals.
Dick held judges cards for the NRHA, AQHA, National Cutting Horse Association, and the National Reined Cow Horse Association.
During his career spanning four decades, Dick won or placed in every major reining event on the North American Continent and several in Europe. His last recorded NRHA event was in 1996, and he held NRHA lifetime earnings exceeding $225,000.
Dick served the industry in a variety of ways, including a tenure as NRHA President. He was at the helm of the organization when the association adopted its judging system, as well as when it moved its marquis event, the NRHA Futurity, moved to Oklahoma City in 1986.
When Dick purchased cutting stallion Playgun in 1993, his attention shifted to NCHA, and he earned more than $350,000 in the sport. Playgun, an $8 million sire, and AQHA Reining World Champion Texas Kicker both made their home at the Pieper Ranch in Marietta, Okla.
Dick was a master horseman and well-respected in the industry. He shared his wisdom, insights, and techniques through books, videos, and with anyone who wanted to learn. Cheryl Cody, who co-wrote The Language of Horsemanship with Dick, said, “His love of horses, the horse industry and people defined him. Sharing his knowledge was as natural as breathing, and he was a master storyteller who never failed to see each new day as an opportunity for adventure.”
Services for Richard “Dick” Pieper:
Wednesday, May 18
5-6 p.m. – Visitation at Smith Funeral Home in Crowell, Texas.
6:30 – 8:30 p.m. – Fellowship and meal following at the Circle Bar Lodge.
Thursday, May 19
8 a.m. – Breakfast before services at 8 a.m. at the Cookhouse, across the road from the Lodge.
10 a.m. – Graveside service at Circle Bar Cemetery
For any questions, please contact Eugenie at 940-655-8065
The Run For A Million (TRFAM) may be reining’s richest event, but after the success of last year’s $150,000 Cow Horse Challenge, held during TRFAM, it’s clear fans want to see even more of the Western way of life. This year, TRFAM will host the $25,000 Cowboy Invitational, allowing cowboys from some of the country’s most historic ranches to show off their horsemanship skills.
Eleven ranches have been invited to each send a cowboy to compete in the Cowboy Invitational. Some of the ranches chosen are American Quarter Horse Association Best Remuda Award winners, meaning they not only have significant livestock operations, but also prominent horse breeding programs. Many of the ranches are also involved in National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) competition.
“Last year was a great test to see how the cow horse would complement The Run For A Million event, and I think it proved to be a real fan favorite,” said Anna Morrison, Executive Director of the NRCHA. “To add on the Cowboy Invitational, which highlights how connected cow horse is to training traditions that are so important for ranch work and ranch life, is incredibly meaningful.”
The Cowboy Invitational will follow the NRCHA’s cowboy class format, designed for working ranch cowboys that are wanting to venture into the competitive arena. Competitors will complete a reining and cow work run, then return to the arena for a modified steer stopping run.
Thanks to inaugural sponsor XIT Ranch, these competitors will have a chance at $25,000 in prize money. With its long history rooted in ranching and the Western lifestyle, XIT Ranch’s owner Drew Knowles stepped up to sponsor what he thought was a good fit for their operation.
“When I was looking at [the cowboy invitational] this year, I noticed there wasn’t any money allocated for the cowboys, so I called up Taylor [Sheridan, producer] and said, ‘We’d love to give the cowboys something to compete for,’” Knowles said. “For us, with the preservation of the American cowboy and the traditions and horsemanship, it’s really a natural extension of what we believe in and what we’re all about.”
Founded in 1885 in the Texas Panhandle, the XIT Ranch at its peak spanned over three million acres and was once considered the largest cattle ranch in the world. Knowles, who is the third-great-grandson of one of its original owners, operates the current XIT Ranch out of La Veta, Colorado. The ranch is involved in the NRCHA as owners, breeders and sponsors.
“For The Run For A Million to have reining and cow horse, and now the Cowboy Invitational, it just speaks volumes to the resurgence in the Western way of life and the global interest of Western sports,” Knowles added. “I think that in this day and age, there’s a rekindling of the romantic idea of the Western way of life. To add in the heritage ranches, which are the epitome of the Western way of life, is just the perfect way for The Run For A Million to further develop as an event.”
The 11 invited ranches are:
6666 Ranch (Guthrie, TX)
Bogle Ltd. (Dexter, NM)
King Ranch (Kingsville, TX)
Pitchfork Land & Cattle Company (Guthrie, TX)
R.A. Brown Ranch (Throckmorton, TX)
San Lucas Ranch (Santa Ynez, CA)
Singleton Ranches (Lamy, NM)
Stuart Ranch (Caddo, OK)
Tongue River Ranch (Dumont, TX)
Waggoner Ranch (Vernon, TX)
Wagonhound Land & Livestock (Douglas, WY)
The 2022 TRFAM will be held Aug. 17-20 at the South Point Arena in Las Vegas. Prior to the competition, the Cowboy Invitational ranches will be invited to participate in a cowboy clinic at the 6666 Ranch in June to help their cowboys get ready for the big stage in Las Vegas.
To find TRFAM’s schedule or purchase tickets, go to www.trfam.com. To learn more about the reined cow horse sport, visit the NRCHA’s website. For more information about XIT Ranch, visit their website.
The National Reining Horse Association is not responsible for the information contained in this press release. Please contact the author or submitting organization for further information, requests, or questions.