Judges and Stewards Selected for 2022 NRHA Futurity

The 2022 National Reining Horse Association Futurity, set for November 24 through December 3, is the premier reining event in the world. Fans travel to Oklahoma City from around the globe to watch NRHA’s top trainers and riders make the big stage debut for elite 3-year-old reining horses.

The landmark event will pay $350,000 to the Level 4 Open Champion and $100,000 to the Level 4 Non Pro Champion, and will also determine the Adequan® North American Affiliate Championships. Not surprisingly, being chosen to score the performances of the exhibitors as a judge is both an honor and a serious responsibility.

The individuals chosen to officiate at the NRHA Futurity this year blend veteran experience with freshman enthusiasm. For the Open Futurity in the Jim Norick Arena, the team includes Sandy Jirkovsky from Mississippi, Van Luse of Texas, Italian Manuela Maiocchi, Kim Myers of Pennsylvania, and Mark Turner from Indiana.

Evaluating performance for the Non Pro Futurity will be Buddy Fisher from Pennsylvania, Oklahoman Don Flohr, Margaret Fuchs of Ohio, Hiram Resende Silva Filho from Goias, Brazil, and Pat Wickenheiser from California.

Jan Dublin of Texas, Linda Hitt from Colorado, and New Yorker Kelly Hedges are the judges chosen for the NAAC classes in the Adequan® Arena.

Ed Cridge and Jeff Buckley, both from Texas, will serve as Equipment Judges in the Jim Norick Arena and the Adequan® Arena, respectively. Monitors for the event will be Eugenio Latorre of Spain and Doug Allen of Arizona.

The group includes four first time Futurity judges, including Maiocchi, Dublin, Hedges and Buckley.

The Futurity Show Steward team is headed by Ed Bricker. He will be joined by Lyle Jackson, Alessandro Dezzutto, Walt Larson and Marlin Holroyd.

“The Judges and Stewards committees take the task of Futurity Judge, Monitor and Steward selection very seriously. These are key positions that move the reining industry forward and set the standard for future competition. We are proud of this year’s lineup of officials and look forward to an exciting event,” said Patti Carter, NRHA Senior Director of Education & Officials.

Upcoming NRHA Futurity & Derby to Feature Guaranteed Payouts for Multiple Levels

Additional $100K Added to 4-Year-Old Division at 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel

Exciting changes were voted on and approved during the August 21 National Reining Horse Association Board of Directors meeting, with several being implemented by the end of 2022.

A major development is the increased added money at NRHA’s premier events, beginning with the 2022 NRHA Futurity. While the Level 4 Open Champion is already guaranteed a check for $350,000 as part of an earlier initiative between the NRHA and members of the Futurity Challenge, contestants in the Level 3 and Level 2 Open, as well as the Level 4 and Level 3 Non Pro, will also be vying for guaranteed checks that far surpass those of previous years.

In 2021, the Level 3 Open Champion was awarded $32,236, while the Level 2 title came with $15,123. This year those amounts have risen to $70,000 and $50,000, respectively.

The Level 4 Non Pro Championship was guaranteed $60,000 in 2021 but has now been elevated to $75,000, while the Level 3 Non Pro winner’s payout has nearly doubled to a guaranteed $40,000.

As with the Level 4 Open, which guarantees $150,000 to the Reserve Champion and $100,000 to the third-place contender, the new guaranteed payouts for Open Levels 3 and 2, and Non Pro Levels 4 and 3, extend through third place.

2022 NRHA Futurity Guaranteed Payouts

  • Level 4 Open Champion – $350,000
  • Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – $150,000
  • Level 4 Open Third Place – $100,000
  • Level 3 Open Champion – $70,000
  • Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – $50,000
  • Level 3 Open Third Place – $35,000
  • Level 2 Open Champion – $50,000
  • Level 2 Open Reserve Champion – $25,000
  • Level 2 Open Third Place – $15,000
  • Level 4 Non Pro Champion – $75,000
  • Level 4 Non Pro Reserve Champion – $45,000
  • Level 4 Non Pro Third Place – $35,000
  • Level 3 Non Pro Champion – $40,000
  • Level 3 Non Pro Reserve Champion – $25,000
  • Level 3 Non Pro Third Place – $15,000

NRHA President Rick Clark is excited about all the new guaranteed payouts. He said, “When we guaranteed the payout in the Open Level 4 at the Futurity, it elevated our industry, and now we are building on that for other Open levels and for the Non Pro. We needed to do this, and I feel that it will help riders in these levels to have something bigger to shoot for.”

He continued, “We are also excited to increase the championship payout at the 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel.” Beginning with the 2023 event, the championship payout for the Level 4 of both the Open and Non Pro will increase, with the Open Champion receiving $100,000 (up from $75,000) and the Non Pro Champion taking home $50,000 (up from $30,000).

Total of $160,000 Added to the 2023 4-Year-Old Stakes

Also debuting at the 2023 Derby will be the revamped 4-Year-Old Open and Non Pro Stakes with an additional $100,000 added. Last year the Tamarack Ranch Open featured $40,000 added with $20,000 in the Colston Paving Non Pro. With the additional $100,000, those added money totals will grow to $110,000 in the Open and $50,000 in the Non Pro.

It was the consensus of the NRHA Board that this will give 4-year-old horses the opportunity to show one more year for good money while not having to compete against older, more finished horses. As in the past, the division will be run concurrently with the Derby preliminaries, and the placings will be decided in the first round. Entry in the 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel will be optional.

Clark continued, “We feel that growing this 4-year-old division at the Derby will give a huge boost to our industry. It will provide more opportunities for owners, breeders and riders.”

Information regarding the NRHA Futurity and Derby can be found online at NRHAFuturity.com or NRHADerby.com. 

NRHA Futurity to Feature APHA’s Chrome Cash Incentive

The American Paint Horse Association’s popular Chrome Cash incentive program will add $5,000 exclusively for registered Paints at the 2022 National Reining Horse Association Futurity, set for November 24-December 3 at State Fair Park in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.

Chrome Cash classes will be offered as part of the Level 4 Open Futurity and the Level 4 Non Pro Futurity, with $3,000 and $2,000 added, respectively. Both solid and regular registry Paints can compete in the Chrome Cash classes, which are paid out according to the NRHA payout schedule. 

NRHA Commissioner Gary Carpenter said, “Our industry moves forward on the strength of innovation. Adding Chrome Cash to the NRHA Futurity just builds on the excitement that American Paint Horses having been bringing for many years.”

APHA Executive Director Billy Smith agreed. “APHA shares that spirit of innovation with NRHA. Chrome Cash represents new opportunities for everyone who registers their reiners with APHA and appreciates flashy horses,” he said.

Entering the Chrome Cash incentives is easy:

  • Both solid and regular registry Paints are eligible to win
  • Both the owner and exhibitor must be current APHA members
  • Enter by marking the “Chrome Cash” option on the NRHA Futurity Rider Designation Form

Any horse with at least one APHA-registered parent (with the other being a registered Paint, Quarter Horse or Thoroughbred) can be registered with APHA, whether the horse has qualifying white markings or not. An AQHA-registered horse can be registered with APHA if they meet minimum requirements based on white markings. Either way, APHA registration makes a horse eligible for more opportunities.

To check if a horse is registered, update ownership, or inquire about the possibility of registration, email Chrome Cash program director Sunny Bates at sbates@apha.com or get a free, no-obligation registration quote from APHA by clicking here.

Learn more about Chrome Cash and how to register your Paint at apha.com/programs/chromecash.

The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded in 1962. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.

The Run For A Million Invitational Lineup Features Array of NRHA Professionals

In just a couple of days, the South Point Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas will be rocking when 16 National Reining Horse Association Professionals vie for a piece for the more than $1,000,000 payout. The Champion will take home a half-million dollars, and this year’s competition is stacked with both veteran riders and up-and-comers.

Take a look at the stats of the riders who will be competing on Saturday, August 20, and let us know who you’d wager on! If you are not in Las Vegas and want to see behind the scenes footage of the riders, the event, and the winning runs be sure to tune into The Last Cowboy.

**Lifetime earnings as of 8/10/2022

Shawn Flarida

Springfield, Ohio

LTE – $6,978,989

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2004 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Smart Spook – $175,000
  • 2002 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Wimpys Little Step – $150,000
  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Tinseltown Fly Guy – $135,596
  • 2014 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Shine N Spook – $132,635
  • 2009 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Gunnatrashya – $125,000
  • 2007 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Wimpys Little Chic – $125,000
  • 2005 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – KR Lil Conquistador – $125,000
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Shine Colt Shine – $105,215
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Whiz Gata Prize – $104,362
  • 2021 TRFAM Reserve Champion – Spooks Gotta Spark – $90,000

Notes: Shawn Flarida took home reserve honors at the 2021 The Run For A Million after an exciting runoff. He is NRHA’s second All Time Leading Rider and was inducted into the NRHA Hall of Fame in 2011. He has ridden and trained several horses that went on to become NRHA Million and Multi-Million Dollar Sires and Dams, including NRHA $12 Million Sire Wimpys Little Step, Reining Triple Crown Winner and NRHA Million Dollar Dam Wimpys Little Chic, NRHA $7 Million Sire Gunnatrashya, and NRHA Million Dollar Sire Shine Chic Shine.  

Known for his signature green show shirts, Shawn is also a five-time World Equestrian Games Gold Medalist.

His son, Sam Flarida, is following in his father’s footsteps and as a Youth and Non Pro rider has accumulated more than $252,000 in lifetime earnings.

Shawn and wife Michelle live in Springfield, Ohio.

Follow Shawn on Facebook.

Casey Deary

Weatherford, Texas

LTE – $3,058,233

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2021 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Ten Thirty – $332,500
  • 2012 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Americasnextgunmodel – $156,750
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Shesouttayourleague – $142,500
  • 2018 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 3rd – Americas Supermodel – $96,764
  • 2020 NRBC Level 4 Open Champion – Americasnexttopgun – $75,000
  • 2022 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Champion – Americasnexttopgun – $71,250
  • 2020 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 3rd – Down Right Amazing – $69,122
  • 2014 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 4th – ARC Gunna Sparkya – $59,690
  • 2017 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Champion – Shesouttayourleague – $57,000
  • 2016 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Champion – Magnum Starlights – $57,000

Notes: Casey Deary is coming off a big win at this year’s 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel, winning the title on Americasnexttopgun. He’s also the reigning NRHA Futurity Champion, taking home the 2021 title on Ten Thirty.

Casey Deary grew up in Texas riding horses, taking low-cost colts, training them, and reselling them, allowing him to grow his training business.

Casey and his wife Nicole now live in Weatherford, Texas, where he coaches youth and amateur clients. The couple’s four children – Wyatt, Owen, Joy, and Olivia – can always be found around the reining events and in the show pen.

Casey competed at the inaugural TRFAM in 2019, finishing eighth.

Follow Casey and his team on Facebook.

Nathan Piper

Pilot Point, Texas

LTE – $1,059,785

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 4th – In Like Flinn – $65,750
  • 2019 NRBC Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Patriot – $63,000
  • 2020 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Patriot – $45,193
  • 2021 TRFAM 7th Place – Patriot – $40,000
  • 2019 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open 3rd – Patriot- $24,788
  • 2020 NRBC Level 4 Open 6th – Patriot – $21,000
  • 2022 NRBC Level 4 Open 8th Place – Patriot – $18,500
  • 2014 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 8th – Independencedayspook – $30,504
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 12th – High Rolling Spook – $19,292
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – Dun Gotyer Guns Up – $18,872

Notes: Nathan Piper was born in Bryan, Texas, where he grew up showing reining horses as a youth. During his junior year of college at Texas A&M University, he decided to forgo his Non Pro status to become an NRHA Professional. Nathan graduated from Texas A&M University in 1999 and married his wife Jean in 2000.

After college, Nathan moved to Whitesboro, Texas, to work for two-time NRHA Futurity Champion Todd Sommers as an assistant trainer. In 2004, Nathan and his wife Jean purchased a training facility in Madisonville, Texas, where they successfully built Nathan Piper Reining Horses.

Piper Reining Horses now operates out of Selah Ranch in Pilot Point, Texas. Nathan and Jean have two daughters, Millie and Etta.

Follow Nathan’s journey on Facebook.

Cade McCutcheon

Aubrey, Texas

LTE: $1,440,879

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2019 The Run For A Million Invitational Co-Champion – Custom Made Gun – $307,500
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Super Marioo – $142,500
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Guns And Dynamite – $105,215
  • 2022 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel L4 Open Reserve Champion – Super Marioo – $40,479
  • 2021 TRFAM 6th Place – Modern Gun – $50,000
  • 2020 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 5th – Gunners Town – $42,147
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Champion – Super Marioo – $29,858
  • 2014 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Non Pro Reserve Champion – Starbucks Finale – $27,665
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – Guns And Dynamite – $22,632
  • 2019 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Open Champion – Shes Got Good Guns – $21,271

Notes: Cade, along with fellow 2021 TRFAM competitor Craig Schmersal, was co-champion of the inaugural event in 2019. Custom Made Gun, on who McCutcheon won his Level 4 Non Pro Championship in 2015, was shipped from Italy to Texas to train with Cade for a shot at the big money. The gamble obviously paid off with the co-title

Later that same year, Cade won the Level 4 Open of the NRHA Futurity on Super Marioo, securing his spot as the youngest NRHA Million Dollar Rider in history.

Cade comes from a family of top competitors. His father Tom McCutcheon, who is also competing in this year’s TRFAM Invitational, is an NRHA Two Million Dollar Rider and Owner. Cade’s mother, Mandy McCutcheon, is an NRHA Three Million Dollar Rider as well as a Million Dollar Owner. Cade’s grandfather is NRHA Hall of Fame Member Tim McQuay, an NRHA Three Million Dollar Rider and Million Dollar Owner, while his grandmother, Colleen McQuay, is also in the NRHA Hall of Fame.

Cade’s younger sister Carlee is an accomplished equestrian in both reining and English events.

Follow Cade on Facebook.

Arno Honstetter

Scottsdale, Arizona

LTE:  $933,944

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2011 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Show Me The Buckles – $113,176
  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 5th – Hollier Than Thou – $50,947
  • 2010 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 5th – Chicsdundreamin – $47,642
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Champion – Whizkey Chaser – $28,061
  • 2010 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Champion – Chicsdundreamin – $23,789
  • 2014 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open Champion – Colonels Splashy Gun – $22,302
  • 2021 High Roller Reining Classic Stakes L4 Open Reserve Champion – Electric Whizkey – $18,534
  • 2020 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – Special Made Whiskey – $15,120
  • 2016 NRBA Level 4 Open 8th – Gunners Special Glo – $16,625
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 14th – See U Saturday Night – $15,873

Notes: Arno Honstetter grew up in Liggeringen Germany, which is in the southern part of Germany in the Bodensee on the Lake of Konstanz. When he was 16 years old, he met National Reined Cow Horse Association Hall of Famer Ken Wold and spent several years working with Ken in the United States. He moved home to Germany for a while before returning to the United States, where he worked for great trainers such as Andrea Fappani and Randy Paul.

Arno, who lives in Scottsdale, Arizona with his wife Lauren and daughter Tatum, is now the resident trainer for Brenda Joyce and Rick Christen’s Story Book Stables.

Follow Arno on Facebook.

Craig Schmersal

Scottsdale, Arizona

LTE: $4,814,971

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2019 TRFAM Invitational Co-Champion – No Smoking Required – $307,500
  • 2017 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Championship – Face The Attitude – $142,500
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Championship – Cashing Black Chex – $88,305
  • 2005 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 3rd – Wrangle Whiz – $81,384
  • 2010 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Championship – Boom Shernic – $75,000
  • 2021 TRFAM 4th Place – No Smokin Required – $65,000
  • 2018 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 4th – Ladysdreamofblueeyes – $53,913
  • 2002 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 4th – Commanders Nic – $52,352
  • 2011 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 5th – Dunits Shining Sun – $51,628
  • 2014 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Reserve Championship – What A Wave – $51,000

Notes: Craig Schmersal won the inaugural TRFAM Co-Championship in 2019, tying with Cade McCutcheon. He won the title on No Smoking Required (by NRHA Leading Sire Gunner), who has earned nearly a half-million dollars in competition.

Craig’s wife, Ginger, has won numerous titles and championships in reining competition, and her lifetime earnings are nearing a half-million dollars. Craig and Ginger’s teenage daughter, Addisyn, has also been racking up reining wins, and her lifetime earnings currently sit at $175,000.

Craig, who lives in Scottsdale, Arizona, with his family, is a two-time FEI World Equestrian Games Team Gold medalist, as well as an Individual Silver medalist.

Follow Craig on Facebook.

Dany Tremblay

Overbrook, Oklahoma

LTE: $1,077,295

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2021 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Tinker With Dreams – $62,500
  • 2017 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $41,000
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 8th – Spooksgottachicolena – $32,110
  • 2019 TRFAM Shootout Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $26,337
  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 11th – The Wizster – $22,800
  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – The Wizster – $21,899
  • 2019 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 3 Open Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $21,370
  • 2017 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 3 Open Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $20,589
  • 2018 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 12th – Thug Life – $20,392
  • 2021 TRFAM 9th Place – PS Mega Shine Chic – $20,000

Notes: Dany Tremblay surpassed $1,000,000 in lifetime earnings during the 2021 The Run For A Million during the Open Shootout, and he’s looking to continue his success in the South Point Arena this year.

Dany and his brother Fred relocated from Canada to the United States in 2014. Expanding upon their Canadian experience, Tremblay Performance Horses has become one of the most successful reining horse training, coaching and marketing programs in the industry. 

Dany has trained and worked with some of the best horsemen available today, including Mike Flarida, NRHA Million Dollar Rider Dell Hendricks and Two Million Dollar Rider Duane Latimer, with whom he keeps a close relationship.

Follow Dany on Facebook.

Andrea Fappani

Scottsdale, Arizona

LTE: $7,198,649

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2020 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – All Bettss Are Off – $237,500
  • 2001 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – RR Star – $150,000
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Spooky Whiz – $142,500
  • 2011 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Lil Joe Cash – $142,500
  • 2021 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Winding Inferno – $118,750
  • 2021 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Mr Farenheit – $118,750
  • 2017 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – All American Vintage – $113,936
  • 2011 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Spook Off Sparks – $113,176
  • 2005 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Big Chex To Cash – $109,633
  • 2003 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – NQH Little Jac – $104,342

Notes: Andrea is the winningest rider in NRHA history and the only competitor to ever pass $7,000,000 in lifetime earnings. When Andrea first became an NRHA Million Dollar Rider in 2006, he was the youngest rider to reach that milestone.

Andrea, originally from Italy, currently lives in Scottsdale, Arizona. His wife Tish, an avid Non Pro competitor with more than $678,000 in lifetime earnings, is an NRHA Million Dollar Owner. His son, Luca, seems to be following in his father’s footsteps and has already won more than $404,000.

Fappani’s other son, Jeremy, is a successful National Amateur Motocross Racer.

Follow Andrea on Facebook.

Jason Vanlandingham

Whitesboro, Texas

LTE: $2,675,118

Top 10 Wins:

  • 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Not Ruf At All – $156,750
  • 2018 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – A Vintage Smoke – $150,000
  • 2021 North American Reining Stakes Level 4 Champion – Excessive Ruffness – $100,000
  • 2021 TRFAM 3rd Place – A Vintage Smoke – $80,000
  • 2016 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Champion – Not Ruf At All – $75,000
  • 2019 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Champion – A Vintage Smoke – $75,000
  • 2021 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Co-Champion – A Vintage Smoke – $62,500
  • 2019 TRFAM Invitational – A Vintage Smoke – $60,000
  • 2020 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Champion – A Vintage Smoke – $57,000
  • 2014 NRHA Derby Level 4 Open Champion – Not Ruf At All – $57,000

Notes: Jason and his wife Adrienne live in Whitesboro, Texas, where they keep a small but select group of horses in training. Jason’s son, Dalton, and daughter, Emma, also compete in reining.

Jason is one of an elite group of riders to ever win reining’s unofficial Triple Crown, which entails winning the NRHA Futurity, the NRHA Derby, and the National Reining Breeders Classic on the same horse. He accomplished that feat not once but two times with standout stallions Not Ruf At All and A Vintage Smoke.

Follow along with Jason on Facebook.

Josh Tishman

Weatherford, Texas

LTE: $231,448

  • 2021 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Champion – Gunnarickashay – $33,250.00
  • 2021 TRFAM Open Shootout Champion – Gunnarickashay – $30,642
  • 2021 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Gunnarickashay – $30,297
  • 2021 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open 9th place – My Special Sidekick – $10,023
  • 2021 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Open 7th Place – Gunna Outshine Ya – $5,399
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 2 Open 6th Place – Lanas Lil Joe – $5,386
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 1 Open Reserve Champion – Lanas Lil Joe – $4,523.51 
  • 2021 APHA World Championship Show Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – Gunnarickashay – $4,389.
  • 2019 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 2 Open 3rd Place – Baileys Sidekick – $4,262
  • 2021 High Roller Reining Classic Level 3 Open 3rd Place – Xtra Dun Step – $4,147

Notes: Josh Tishman started riding English from a young age, jumping horses in the Northeastern portion of the United States. Originally from Jefferson, Maine, Josh attended college in Montana, rodeoing for Rocky Mountain College. According to Josh, the rodeo coach begged him to ride for them. He agreed, under the stipulation, he could ride the reining horses.

Josh has since worked for multiple NRHA Professionals but has worked at Casey Deary Performance Horses the longest – more than six years. His wife, Layton, is an accomplished barrel racer and has been getting her feet wet in reining in recent years.

The Tishmans make their home with their one-year-old daughter, Emma Grace, at Deary Performance Horses in Weatherford, Texas.

Keep up with Josh on Facebook.

Matt Palmer

Elverson, Pennsylvania

LTE: $749,870

  • 2021 The Run For A Million Open Shoot Out Champion – Gunnatrashtheplace – $11,990
  • 2017 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open 4th Place – Boom Shien Boom – $9,995
  • 2020 NRBC Level 4 Open 13th Place – Gunnatrashtheplace – $9,875
  • 2021 NRBC Classic Challenge Level 4 Open Champion – Gunnatrashtheplace – $9,374
  • 2013 OVRHA Blue Grass Reining Stakes Wimpys Little Step Derby Level 4 Open Champion – Legends Lil Squeeze – $9,146
  • 2019 NRBC Level 4 Open 15th Place – Spitfire Spook – $7,833
  • 2019 NRBC Level 3 Open 5th Place – Spitfire Spook – $6,504
  • 2009 Carolina Classic ABI Derby Level 4 Open Champion – Whale Of A Whiz – $6,275
  • 2016 NRBC Level 4 Open 20th Place – Dun Alotta Chics – $5,500
  • 2013 OVRHA Blue Grass Reining Stakes Level 4 Open Champion – Legends Lil Squeeze – $5,450

Notes: Matt Palmer was raised in the horse industry by his parents Guy and Joan Palmer. He has competed since childhood, but reining wasn’t his only interest. While simultaneously competing in the horse world, Matt also dreamed of becoming a professional baseball player. He played through high school and college, getting as far as signing with the Minnesota Twins before an injury sidelined that dream. Those years would not go to waste, as the discipline learned along with the mental strength it takes to compete would follow Matt into his career as an NRHA professional.

Matt is a two-time USEF Gold Medalist. In addition to being the youngest member of the USEF team, he would join the WEG team. He is a five-time NRHA World Champion and consistently ranks as an NRHA Top 20 Professional.

Matt also coaches Non Pro and youth riders and has helped them earn AQHA and NRHA titles, make the finals at major NRHA events, and has helped eight of his students earn college riding scholarships.

Follow Palmer Performance Horses on Facebook.

Francesco Martinotti

Whitesboro, Texas

LTE: $310,276

  • 2021 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – Smoking Trash – $13,415
  • 2022 NRBC Level 4 Open 13th Place – Smoking Trash – $11,125
  • 2014 IRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 3rd Place – DJ Ruf – $10,774
  • 2020 NRBC Level 4 Open 13th Place – Smoking Trash – $9,875
  • 2019 NRHA Level 4 Open 24th Place – Smoking Trash – $9,838
  • 2018 All American Quarter Horse Congress Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – MMB Spook Gotta Girl – $7,546
  • 2021 The Run For A Million Open Shoot Out 7th Place – Smoking Trash – $7,327
  • 2021 NRBC Level 3 Open 5th Place – Smoking Trash – $7,133
  • 2020 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open 11th Place – Smoking Trash – $7,086
  • 2013 NRHA European Derby Level 3 Open Champion – Rambo Bo Sun – $6,410

Notes: Francesco Martinotti is originally from Italy and grew up riding reining horses with his sister, Valentina, until he was given the opportunity to work professionally with one of Italy’s most renowned horse owner, Claudio Risso. It was there he started working as an assistant while training two-year-olds.

Once on his own, he became one of Italy’s top NRHA professionals. In 2015, after winning the FEI European Championship Team Gold medal for Italy, he was approached by NRHA Two Million Dollar Rider Tom McCutcheon with a job opportunity in America to learn from the industry’s top professionals such as NRHA Two Million Dollar Rider Duane Latimer and Tom himself.

Since arriving in the US in January of 2016, Francesco has been either a finalist or top 10 finisher in every major open derby or futurity. In the fall of 2017, Francesco decided it was time to start his own business and Martinotti Equine Services LLC was born.

Follow Francesco and Smoking Trash on Facebook.

Jordan McBurney

Arlington, Washington

LTE: $325,686

  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open 3rd Place – Smoke In Whizkey – $16,639
  • 2021 NRHA 6666 Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – No Mans Whizkey – $13,415
  • 2021 NRBC Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – No Mans Whizkey – $13,315
  • 2016 High Roller Reining Classic Futurity Level 3 Open Champion – Gibsons Finest – $10,010
  • 2021 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 4 Open 10th Place – No Mans Whizkey – $7,968
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open 10th Place – Sparklin Whizkey – $7,738
  • 2021 The Run For A Million Open Shootout 7th Place – No Mans Whizkey – $7,327
  • 2016 High Roller Reining Classic Futurity Level 4 Open 3rd Place – Gibsons Finest – $6,215
  • 2017 Reining By The Bay Derby  Level 3 Open Champion – Waitin On A Diamond – $5,620
  • 2015 High Roller Reining Classic Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – Waitin On A Whizkey – $4,872

Notes: Wife of fellow TRFAM competitor Sean McBurney. Jordan began showing reining horses in 2009, although she has barrel raced competitively for years. She got started in reining after working a job exercising and grooming reining horses.

She and her husband, Sean, are the resident trainers of Rhodes River Ranch, so typically the couple show horses by Rhodes River Ranch stallion Whizkey N Diamonds, an NRHA Million Dollar Sire.

Keep up with Jordan on Rhodes River Ranch Facebook.

Sean McBurney

Arlington, Washington

LTE: $493,367

  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Champion – Rsure Shot Of Whizkey – $26,934
  • 2012 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open Champion – Chics Loaded Gun – $21,447
  • 2014 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open 3rd Place – Guns R For Shootin – $15,563
  • 2018 High Roller Reining Classic Level 4 Open Stakes Champion – Tinker With Dreams – $13,976
  • 2018 High Roller Reining Classic Derby Level 3 Champion – Tinker With Dreams – $12,025
  • 2021 High Roller Reining Classic High Roller Reining Futurity Level 4 Reserve Champion – Xtra Stone Cold – $11,155
  • 2018 High Roller Reining Classic Stakes Level 3 Open Champion – Tinker With Dreams – $9,731
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open – Lil Gun Affair – $8,945
  • 2018 High Roller Reining Classic Derby Level 2 Open Champion – Tinker With Dreams – 8,428
  • 2018 High Roller Reining Classic Derby Level 4 Open 4th – Tinker With Dreams – $8,379

Notes: Husband of fellow TRFAM competitor Jordan McBurney. Sean is the manager and head trainer at Rhodes River Ranch, where he has worked for more than two decades. Jordan is also a trainer at Rhodes River Ranch.

Sean grew up with thoroughbreds and jumpers, but reining seemed like a bigger challenge, and he liked how broke reiners were.

Sean’s biggest win to date came in 2015 when he won the NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Championship on Rsure Shot Of Whizkey. Rhodes River Ranch owns NRHA Million Dollar Sire Whizkey N Diamonds, and both Sean and Jordan can regularly be found showing the stallion’s offspring.

Keep up with Sean on Rhodes River Ranch Facebook.

Fernando Salgado

Gainesville, Texas

LTE: $721,553

  • 2022 NRBC Level 4 Open 4th Place – Gunnabeabrightstar – $32,500
  • 2022 NRBC Level 3 Open Champion – Gunnabeabrightstar – $24,921
  • 2016 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open Champion – Electric Cha Ching –             $21,046
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 12th Place – Loveya – $19,292
  • 2018 SWRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Stars And Sparks – $17,112
  • 2020 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 14th Place – Vinny Gun – $14,386
  • 2019 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 17th Place – Gunnabeabrightstar – $13,628
  • 2016 NRHA Futurity Level 2 Open Reserve Champion – Loveya – $13,237
  • 2022 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel Level 3 Open 3rd Place – Electric Enterprise – $12,780
  • 2016 SWRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion – Loveya – $12,671

Notes: Brazilian-born Fernando Salgado was raised in a performance horse family, with both of his older brothers training professionally. He had already proven himself as a successful trainer and showman in Brazil, with several prestigious wins while working for his brother Eduardo prior to coming to the US.

Fernando began his US career in 2010 when he became the first assistant trainer at the newly established Xtra Quarter Horses, home of Wimpys Little Step. Under the guidance of Thiago Boechat, he was mounted on some of the finest Reining horses in the industry, including Shiners Voodoo Dr. This talented trainer also rode under the renowned Andrea Fappani to further his training knowledge.

Along with his wife Sabrina, the NRHA Professional has his own training business at Fernando Salgado Reining Horses.

Follow Fernando on Facebook.

Billy Williams

Aubrey, Texas

LTE: $193,353

  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open 8th Place – Gunnafoolya – $9,320
  • 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 2 Open 5th Place – Gunnafoolya – $8,918
  • 2010 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open 6th Place – Wimpys Lil Star – $8,485
  • 2021 NRBC Development Division Reserve Champion – Tinkers Little Step – $7,628
  • 2016 High Roller Reining Classic Stakes Level 3 Open Champion – Gunnafoolya – $6,986
  • 2016 NRBC Level 4 Open 24th Place – Gunnafoolya – $5,050
  • 2011 NRBC Level 2 Open 4th Place – Strawberry Tag – $4,527
  • 2008 NRBC Level 2 Open 4th Place – Whiz N Starlight – $4,482
  • 2015 All American Quarter Horse Congress 5th Place – Gunnafoolya – $4,263
  • 2010 NRHA Futurity Level 2 Open 4th Place – Wimpys Lil Star – $4,236

Notes: Billy placed 13th at the Cactus Reining Classic earlier this year just missing the call back for The Run for a Million, but received a call from Taylor Sheridan inviting him to compete in Las Vegas after another had to withdraw from the competition due to personal reasons.

Billy lives with his wife, Veronica, and son Weston in Aubrey, Texas, and owns and operates Williams Ranch. Billy serves on the Reining Horse Foundation Board and has held active roles in multiple NRHA committees.

Follow Williams Performance Horses on Facebook.

Entries Look to be Up for 2022 NRHA Futurity on Eve of Fourth Payment Deadline

While important events are held throughout the year, the National Reining Horse Association Futurity, slated for November 24–December 3, is heralded as reining’s premier event. For 3-year-old reining horses, the Futurity’s spotlight shines on the horses in their first year of competition, and all eyes are on the Jim Norick Coliseum to see which ones will begin to write their names in the history books of the sport.

Ten Thirty

Ten Thirty, All Bettss Are Off, Super Marioo, and A Vintage Smoke are the most recent Level 4 Open Champions from the Futurity, and when any of these horses’ names are called, spectators flock to the fence to watch at derbies throughout the world.

The NRHA Futurity has continued to grow in both size and prominence since it was first held in Columbus, Ohio, in 1966. On the eve of the fourth payment deadline (August 1) for the 2022 Futurity, the world’s largest reining event is shaping up to be another record breaker, as the number of entries with at least one payment made is up from the prior year.

Once again, the Level 4 Open Futurity Champion will leave the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds $350,000 richer, and the Level 4 Non Pro Champion will be presented a check for $60,000. The total payout will likely once again surpass $2.6 million.

Those numbers are expected to continue rising, as late entries are typical. First payments can still be made until August 1 with just a $600 late fee, and those made between August 1 and October 1, will incur a $1,000 late fee.

The deadline to be included in the draw for both the Open and Non Pro Futurity is November 1.

All entry forms can be found at NRHAFuturity.com, and entries can be made online or mailed.