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.”