Another action-packed day of competition drew to a close at the 6666 National Reining Horse Association Derby presented by Markel, where the freestyle reining brought energy to the Colesium and several ancillary champions were crowned in the Adequan® Arena.
With the Non Pro Derby Finals taking place tomorrow, and the Adequan® Arena packed with novice horses and rookies, several champions are yet to be decided at the Derby.
Novice Horse Non Pro Level 1, 2, & 3 Highpoint – Melissa Wigen & Starlight Escalade
Melissa Wigan and Starlight Escalade are bringing home a truckload of hardware from the 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel. In total, Wigan won the Novice Horse Non Pro Level 1 Highpoint, Level 2 (2) Co-Championship and Highpoint, and Level 3 Highpoint, pocketing $2,700 and winning three Montana Silversmiths buckles.
“Today he did really well. I had a bobble in a turn, and it cost me, but other than that he was right there with me,” Wigen said.
With a score of 144, Wigen topped off a week full of emotion and triumph with Starlight Escalade (Starlights Wrangler x Escalante Chic).
“I feel like his stops were better than our last go,” Wigen said. “I was a little tense [last time].”
Surrounded by her team, Wigen teared up as she thanked husband Travis and Sebastian Petroll for helping her find Starlight Escalade.
Novice Horse Non Pro Level 3 (2) Champion – Kristi Peplowski & Whizzin At Starbucks
Kristi Peplowski rode Whizzin At Starbucks for owners Oak Mill Ranch LLC to win the second slate of the Novice Horse Non Pro Level 3. The four-year-old stallion, by NRHA Four Million Dollar Sire Spooks Gotta Whiz out of Starbucks Deja Vu, scored a 144.5.
“He was really good,” Peplowski said. “He turned better than he did in the Derby, and that was our goal for today.”
Peplowski and Whizzin At Starbucks have continued to improve throughout showing at the Congress and the Futurity.
“I thank my husband for sure, who is a huge help to me, and our trainer, Brandon Brant, who has put all the foundation on this horse,” Peplowski said.
Novice Horse Non Pro Level 2 (2) Co-Champion – Alicia Rapp & Spooks Gotta Glo
Alicia Rapp and Spooks Gotta Glo earned the Novice Horse Non Pro Level 2 (2) Co-Championship with a score of 144 in the Adequan® Arena on Thursday, June 23. With the win, Rapp took home $1,353.
“My run was pretty good. He circled really, really good and I got stopped pretty big all three times. That was my goal today – get stopped,” Rapp said.
Spooks Gotta Glo (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Look At Her Glo), or “Ringo,” is a five-year-old gelding owned by Rapp. He was bred by Bobby Lewis.
“He wants to be in your pocket and your best friend. He’s really such a ham,” Rapp said. “I got him last year in August so I feel like we’re finally getting to know each other.”
According to Rapp, Ringo’s biggest area of improvement has been his stops, and he’s advanced quickly since arriving at the 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel.
“Thank you to Giada Camparsi. She has helped me the last few shows stepping in for our trainer from Tampa who has been unable to come to the last few shows. She’s done a great job,” Rapp said.