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IHP CHRONICLE by International Horse Press

Issue 2 // May 2023


The American Performance Horseman

The inaugural event presented by Teton Ridge


Editor-in-Chief Simona Diale

Production and Design Chiara Milani

EDITORIAL Assistant Editor Olivia Diale

On the Cover: Wes Galyean & Third Edge owned by Teton Ridge

Photo by IHP/Martina Tonello Photography

Proud NRHA Corporate Partner

2022 IHP Media Alliance Partners

Thank you 2022 IHP Media Partners




Czechowicz reins CSG Wisemanfear to top honors

Casey Deary & Down Right Amazing conquer


NRCHA World’s Greatest Horseman

66 Magical win for Ralls & Call Me Mitch

80 On The Rail

NCHA of Italy/NCHA Events

National Reining Breeders Classic Training tips

The Cutting Show Season officially opens


The American Western Weekend at Globe Life Field in Arglington, Texas, offered a one-of-a-kind multi-event celebration of the spirit of the American West with four nights of action-packed entertainment, world-class talent in the performance horse industry, multi-platinum musical entertainment, and much more. Brand new for 2023, fans experienced a first-of-its-kind event: The American Performance Horseman (TAPH) presented by Teton Ridge. Celebrating the elegance and excellence of cutting, reining, and reined cow horse, three distinct western equine performance sports, the inaugural event saw the 2022 top five money-earning professionals of each discipline compete for both individual and team standings for a total payout of $1,000,000.

March 10, 2023 | Arlington, Texas Photos by Martina Tonello Photography By Simona Diale

Team Royal Blue Performes Royally to First Place Honors; Deary Storms to Victory In The Individual Competition

The team aspect was a very unique component of this event; one we haven’t really seen in the horse show world. Comprised of one cutter, one reiner, and one cow horse rider decided by random draw, each team’s standing was determined by combining the three individual scores.

Once the curtain fell on the Globe Life Field arena on Friday night, Sarah Dawson and Adan Banuelos had topped the cow horse and cutting individual competition and, along with Fernando Salgado who placed third in the reining portion, also took team gold.

“I had to say goodbye to her [All Spice] after winning the Futurity since owners Teton Ridge had decided to retire her—when this opportunity came up, I was over the moon.”

The American Performance Horseman Adan Banuelos & All Spice

The event kicked off with the cutting where 2020 NCHA Open Futurity Champions and 2021 NCHA Open Horse of the Year All Spice, AKA “The Queen,” and now NCHA Six Million Dollar Rider Adan Banuelos laid down an amazing performance paid back by the judges with a 229 for the lead. “This is the best horse I have ever ridden,” said Banuelos about the stylish red roan mare owned by Teton Ridge. “I had to say goodbye to her after winning the Futurity since the owners had decided to retire her so when this opportunity came up, I was over the moon.” The duo picked up from where they left off thrilling the crowd with their incredible connection and with the mare showing off her athletic ability on “an unbelievable stage” as Banuelos put it. “We’re just full of emotion and happiness and I knew it was going to work out right. This is a thing that people dream about doing and when you get the opportunity to perform somewhere like this, you just shut up and like it! We have all put so much criticism into ourselves, into our program, into our horses. We can dissect anything and the truth is that these guys’ horses have done a lot for people for a long time and have endured some tough situations under a lot of pressure. We have taken the cowboy out of our sport. None of the 15 here ever doubted what Teton would put together; they did their very best and made us all look better. They set the stage and showed it can be done and I think we’ll absolutely find more shows like this around the country — maybe not to the level these guys pulled it off but I’m certain we will.”


As event staff reworked the arena for the reining, Rock and Roll Hall of FamerSheryl Crow entertained the public with a line-up of hit songs. When the Grammy Award winner left the stage, the attention returned to the arena for the reining.

First in the arena was NRHA Million Dollar Rider Fernando Salgado riding Pale Dun Star, a 7-year-old gelding owned by Ian Jr. and Kristen Cantacuzene. The pressure was on for the native of Brazil now based in

Gainesville, Texas. With Banuelos on top of the cutting leaderboard and Dawson posting the highest score in the rein work, which took place before the show began, the pressure was on. “I am a big fan of both of them and I was nervous,” he told.

“When you watch them showing

and how their hors es perform, they’re amazing; that put a lot of pressure on me and I didn’t want to drop the ball. I was really happy I was able to do that.”

Salgado rode to a 224 score closing in third place which was accompanied by a $50,000 paycheck.

“Love for the horses is the answer to everything and why the atmosphere was so high tonight. That’s the reason that I moved from my country to here. We all work so many hours, and I think what makes us go to this level is the love of the horse. It always pays off.”

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Fernando Salgado & Pale Dun Star

Another page was turned in the arena and it was time for the muchanticipated reined cow horse fence work. Sarah Dawson and Shine Smarter were the last to go: The NRCHA Million Dollar Rider needed a 215.5 to ride her team to victory, yet, with the 11-year-old mare between the reins, she didn’t settle on riding easy and once their fast and precise performance was over, a 226.5 appeared on the scoreboard bringing their composite to a 452.5, the win, and and a $125,000 paycheck.

that was great for all three disciplines, to making the show roll. We’ve always talked amongst ourselves about how our sports are so freakin’ cool but the problem we’ve always had is that we don’t have spectators. We get the same people over and over again coming to our shows but here Teton has proved that we can make it a spectator-driven event as opposed to a competitordriven one, and I am excited to see what it’s going to turn into. They’ve opened a door for us that we didn’t know we could open.”

“Teton Ridge has proven that we can make this a spectator-driven event as opposed to a competitor-driven one, and I am excited to see what it’s going to turn into. They’ve opened a door for us that we didn’t know we could open.”

“She was fantastic! It hasn’t sunk in and I haven’t even wrapped my mind around the money yet,” said Dawson during the press conference. “I just can’t get over the fact that that mare accomplished what she did tonight. I felt like we kinda cheated this morning because we all warmed up in that arena, we come out for 15 minutes, and then went back in to show. For the fence work, we were a little bit in different shoes as opposed to the reiners and the cutters because these horses don’t take a lot of preparation to go down the fence: all they have to do is stretch their legs. Mentally they can be a little up and that’s OK. I have a lot of respect for the cutters and reiners because they are the ones that had to manage their horses’ nerves because of the situation they were put in but Teton Ridge did a great job of managing everything, from the ground

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Sarah Dawson & Shine Smarter The American Performance Horseman

Casey Deary and Down Right Amazing

“Personally, the reason I do what I do is because I love these horses,” said Deary. “Everything we do daily is about preparing our horses to handle any situation we put them in. To have to shift gears and put in all that time to settle into a situation where we are just a small component took a bit of adjusting; the guys here picked the horses capable of doing that and we had to make sure that we were not only picking the best athlete but that we were picking the most adaptable one.”

NRHA Three Million Dollar Rider Casey Deary made sure he picked the best, and the most adaptable: Down Right Amazing. Draw four in the competition the combo burst into the arena and the public exploded. They kept the spectators hooked until the very last maneuver of the modified version of NRHA Pattern #10 and proving the judges liked their performance as much as the spectators did was the score: A 231.5. The win added $100,000, as well as an additional $8,333.33 for Team Green’s third-place team finish, to their Lifetime Earnings (LTE).

“He’s a very special horse and has been part of the family since he hit the ground, and his mother who I won the NRHA Futurity and Derby on, was very special too,” said Deary about the 6-year-old sorrel stallion by NRHA Thirteen Million Dollar Sire Gunner, out of Shesouttayourleague (by NRHA Four Million Dollar Sire Walla Walla Whiz) owned by DAG Ventures LLC. “He did most of the work for me and I tried to spend as much time as I could in the arena—including when the cattle came in—so he would get accustomed to these surroundings. From a spectators’ standpoint, we had to make little adjustments that maybe we are not accustomed to, but it ran incredibly smooth. Teton set the bar so high that it’s going to be difficult to top it.”

The American Performance Horseman

The American Performance Horseman

Team Royal Blue 1

Points 905.5

REINED COW HORSE: Shine Smarter & Sarah Dawson

2012 M (WR This Cats Smart x Shiney Tari)

Owner: Linda Mars

Breeder: Carol Rose & Richard Bell

Score: 452.5 (226 rein/226.5 cow)

CUTTING: All Spice & Adan Banuelos

2017 M (Once In A Blu Boon x Show Biz Kitty)

Owner: Teton Ridge Breeder: Royce Stallcup

Score: 229

REINING: Pale Dun Star & Fernando Salgado

2016 S (Pale Face Dunnit x Get Ya Some Stars)

Owner: Ian Jr. & Kristen Cantacuzene Breeder: Hickory Creek Ranch LLC

Score: 224

Team Racing Green 3

Points 891.5


CSR Lay Down Sally & Chris Dawson

2011 M (Dual Spark x Look At Her Glo)

Owner: Meredith Garber

Breeder: Circle Star Land & Cattle Co.

Score: 443 (224.5 rein/218.5 cow)

CUTTING: Lil Maddy Rey & Lindy Thorn

2012 M (Dual Smart Rey x Miss Madelines Cat)

Owner: Misty Greeson Breeder: Clark Brewster


Regal Red 2

Points 894

REINED COW HORSE: Scooter Kat & Justin Wright

2015 S (Kit Kat Sugar x Scooters Daisy Dukes)

Owner: Eric Freitas Breeder: Taylor Carbo

Score: 449.5 (224.5 rein/225 cow)

CUTTING: Blackish & Lloyd Cox

2014 M (Hottish x SS Blacks Lil Kitty)

Owner: Julie Jarma Breeder: Julie Jarma

Score: 224

REINING: Alpha Jac Sparrow & Shawn Flarida

2018 S (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Chexanicki)

Owner: Fritz Leeman Breeder: Alpha Quarter Horses LLC

Score: 220.5

Score: 217

REINING: Down Right Amazing & Casey Deary

2017 S (Gunner x Shesouttayourleague)

Owner: DAG Ventures LLC

Breeder: Curtis Performance Horses LLC

Score: 231.5


Team Imperial Purple

Points 878


Good Time & Corey Cushing

2011 G (One Time Pepto x Dual Nurse)

Owner: Corey & Kristen Cushing

Breeder: Cindy Smith

Score: 426.5 (218 rein/208.5 cow)


Third Edge & Wes Glayean

2018 S (Metallic Rebel x Lil Rattler)

Owner: Teton Ridge

Breeder: SMF Cutting Horses LLC

Score: 221


Trash Talkin Spook & Andrea Fappani

2017 G (Gunnatrashya x I Spook)

Owner: Marilyn Overgaard

Breeder: Richard & Vicki Dias

Score: 230.5

Team Burnt Orange

Points 847.5


SJR Smooth Lil Oak & Lee Deacon

2016 G (Smooth As A Cat x Shiners Little Oak)

Owner: Janie Dvorak-Compton

Breeder: San Juan Ranch

Score: 406.5 (188 rein/218.5 cow)


Kittennish & Austin Shepard

2019 M (Hottish x Show Biz Kitty)

Owner: Billy Wolf Breeder: Royce Stallcup

Score: 220


Guns And Dynamite & Matt Mills

2016 S (Gunners Special Nite x Chic Olena Starbuck)

Owner: Tim & MaryBeth Ruckman

Breeder: Turnabout Farm Inc.

Score: 221

About Teton Ridge

Teton Ridge is a multi-platform, wholly American-owned brand and media company devoted to the iconic American western way of life and western sports. Teton Ridge’s Sports division was created with the singular focus of elevating classic western sports and America’s western culture on the world stage, while broadening audiences around the globe as well as at home. In 2021, Teton Ridge acquired The American, the iconic event of the rodeo circuit, to continue to expand the audiences for rodeo sports and make it the world’s premier western culture event. For more information about Teton Ridge, please visit www.tetonridge.com or @tetonridge on Instagram @tetonridgeusa on Facebook.



The American Performance Horseman



1 Down Right Amazing (Gunner x Shesouttayourleague) | Casey Deary | 231.5 DAG Ventures LLC | Curtis Performance Horses LLC


2 Trash Talkin Spook (Gunnatrashya x I Spook) | Andrea Fappani | 230.5 Marilyn Overgaard Richard & Vicki Dias


3 Pale Dun Star (Pale Face Dunnit x Get Ya Some Stars) | Fernando Salgado | 224 Ian Jr. & Kristen Cantacuzene | Hickory Creek Ranch LLC


4 Guns And Dynamite (Gunners Special Nite x Chic Olena Starbuck) | Matt Mills | 221 Tim & MaryBeth Ruckman | Turnabout Farm Inc.


5 Alpha Jac Sparrow (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Chexanicki) | Shawn Flarida | 220.5 Fritz Leeman | Alpha Quarter Horses LLC


Andrea Fappani & Trash Talkin Spook Fernando Salgado & Pale Dun Star Matt Mills & Guns And Dynamite Shawn Flarida & Alpha Jac Sparrow
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Lloyd Cox & Blackish Wes Galyean & Third Edge
Austin Shepard & Kittenish Lindy Thorn & Lil Maddy Rey 1 All Spice (Once In A Blu Boon x Show Biz Kitty) | Adan Banuelos | 229 Teton Ridge | Royce Stallcup $100,000 2 Blackish ((Hottish x SS Blacks Lil Kitty) | Lloyd Cox | 224 Julie Jarma $75,000 3 Third Edge (Metallic Rebel x Lil Rattler) | Wes Galyean | 221 Teton Ridge | SMF Cutting Horses LLC $50,000 4 Kittennish (Hottish x Show Biz Kitty) | Austin Shepard | 220 Billy Wolf | Royce Stallcup $25,000 5 Lil Maddy Rey (Dual Smart Rey x Miss Madelines Cat) | Lindy Thorn | 217 Misty Greenson | Clark Brewster $25,000



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Shine Smarter (WR This Cats Smart x Shiney Tari) | Sarah Dawson | R 226-C 226.5 Linda Mars | Carol Rose & Richard Bell $100,000
Scooter Kat (Kit Kat Sugar x Scooters Daisy Dukes) | Justin Wright | R 224.5-C 225 Eric Freitas | Taylor Carbo $75,000
CSR Lay Down Sally (Dual Spark x Look At Her Glo) | Chris Dawson | R 224.5-C 218.5 Meridith Garber | Circle Star Land & Cattle Co. $50,000
Good Time (One Time Pepto x Dual Nurse) | Corey Cushing | R 218-C 208.5 Kristen and Corey Cushing | Cindy Smith $25,000
SJR Smooth Lil Oak (Smooth As A Cat x Shiners Little Oak) | Lee Deacon | R 118-C 218.5 Janie Dvorak-Compton | San Juan Ranch $25,000
& Scooter Kat
Chris Dawson & CSR Lay Down Sally Corey Cushing & Good Time
Deacon & SJR Smooth Lil Oak

About The American Rodeo

Hailed as The Crown Jewel of Rodeo™, The American Rodeo is an unrivaled celebration of the pioneering spirit of the American West. The national sporting event offers fans a unique choice – to cheer on western sports’ finest champion athletes or root for the underdog “contenders” chasing a $1 million bonus – through every rodeo, roping, and riding effort. Acquired by Teton Ridge in 2021, The American Rodeo is an annual western sports and entertainment celebration that matches professional rodeo’s top athletes against the world’s most aspirational cowboys and cowgirls, who have put up their own money to bet on themselves in this high-stakes showdown. For more information on The American Rodeo, please visit www.americanrodeo.com or @TheAmerican.TR on Instagram @TheAmericanTR on Facebook and Twitter.

Photos by The American Western Weekend The American Rodeo Champions
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The American Performance Horseman
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Photo courtesy Tha American Western Weekend

National Reining Breeders Classic A Record Breaking Year

Tulsa’s Built Ford Tough Livestock Complex at Expo Square was the site of a new era for the National Reining Breeders Classic. Not only was the central location appealing to a larger geographic range of reiners, the added money took a giant leap and competition was fierce.

April 16-23 Tulsa, Oklahoma | USA

Casey Deary Earns Second NRBC Championship on Down Right Amazing

Casey Deary came out swinging on Saturday night at the NRBC Open Classic Finals. First, as draw 5, he put up a 227 on Ten Thirty owned by Rancho El Fortin. Then came DAG Ventures LLCowned stallion Down Right Amazing (Gunner x Shesouttayourleague) at draw 17. The duo motored to a crowdpleasing 230 score that stood for the remainder of the 31-horse Final field to earn the Open Classic Champion title in the Level (L)4.

“That horse is a star and has shown up every time I’ve called on him,” Deary said of the horse called “Amazing.” “I knew he was going to do his job as he has the ability to do it. Obviously, there are a lot of really great horses in there. I just had to give mine the best opportunity.” It's been a year of opportunities for Deary and Amazing. The pair qualified to the top five NRHA earners for 2022 to make a run at The American Performance Horseman in Arlington, Texas, where they won the individual competition with a 231.5. Then, all eyes turned to the NRBC.

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Casey Deary & Down Right Amazing

A 225 in the preliminary should have been a shoe-in, but with the deep NRBC field, Deary qualified the horse in the 23rd hole. Understanding that the competition was tougher than ever, he made a plan for the Finals. “This is a big arena and I knew it would be a tough horse show,” Deary said. “I went as fast as he was comfortable going. He turned around really good for me and let me put him exactly where I needed to be. He let me circle him as good as I’ve ever circled him—he went fast and slow and stayed between the bridle reins. I could tell that after I circled him, he was running out of gas running and stopping.” But, Amazing had enough

for the five judges to credit him with a 230. The high score earned $100,000 and the use of the Twin Cities Trailers Gooseneck trailer for one year. It is Deary’s second NRBC Open Classic L4 title, the first being in 2020 when the show was also held in Tulsa during COVID. “The scores in the prelims were just phenomenal and this whole entire week has been exceptional,” said Good. “I’m very excited, grateful, thankful and blessed to own this amazing horse. Coming off The American, that was a pretty big show for him and he’s held up. Like Michael Jordan, he’s a top athlete and we’ve been doing our best to take care of him.”

When the Deary crew returns to Weatherford, Texas, Down Right Amazing will get some time off and also enter the breeding shed. One thing is for sure; right now, all eyes are on Las Vegas where Down Right Amazing qualified Deary to compete. It will be another family affair for Deary Performance Horses. “I want to thank my wife, my biggest cheerleader. She’s taught all my children the exciting cheers, like ‘shake it off dad!’ and I wouldn’t and couldn’t do it without her,” Deary said. “I have the best set of customers anyone could have; they’re always happy, whether one of their friends win it or not. It’s a big family event for us.”

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Photos by McKinnon Larcombe Photography Edited NRBC Press Release Andrea Fappani rode Trash Talkin Spook (Gunnatrashya x I Spook) owned by Marilyn Overgaard to a 229 claiming the L4 Open Reserve Championship and a $60,000 paycheck.

Luca Fappani and Dream On Whiz take Level 3 and 2 Open Classic titles

The last-minute decision for Luca Fappani to show Dream On Whiz paid off in the NRBC Open Classic L3 and 2 Finals. The Magnum Chic Dream gelding out of Ms Sassy Whiz marked a 226.5 and the duo added a total of $60,000 combining money earned in both levels: $20,000 in L2 and $40,000 in L3. “It is Joetta Bell’s horse and she offered him to me to show right before the NRBC. I rode him five times before coming to Tulsa, and a couple times here, then went and showed,” Fappani said.

Fappani took a break from showing for a year, then after he completed high school went to work for Corey Cushing where he says he learned a lot about how a horse’s mind worked and the

way horses learn in general. The knowledge is something he carries over to how he trains and rides his show horses now at Casey Deary’s, who he has worked for since January 2023. “Since I graduated high school, I feel I have become a better rider with what I learned from Corey, my dad [Andrea Fappani] my whole life, and now from Casey,” he said. “I feel really confident in how my horses are starting to feel.”

While Fappani was worried about how the gelding would respond to the noise, pressure and crowd, he says he warmed up and showed the exact same as he did in the preliminaries. “He is a broke horse. His owner, Joetta, does a great job of riding him at home and she has had a lot of success with him,” he said. “I just hopped

on and I put in some little things I thought would help. He is such a talented horse; he is a great stopper, great circler, and he is just so simple. He does exactly what you tell him to do, he felt just right.”

Now competing in the Open, Fappani says the horses are at a higher level but the competition isn’t much different. There are so many good non pros that do a great job in training their horses, he said, but it is also special to have the opportunity to compete with the big names he has grown up with. “I want to thank the Bell’s, Casey Deary for mounting me, and my girlfriend, Payton, for keeping me going the entire show. She got my horses ready, helped me ride, band, tails, everything. She has done so much and the whole barn here is so supportive. Every single non pro client and assistant have been there for me through the whole show. It was long, with many horses; we put a lot of runs together, but it’s been great.”

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Luca Fappani & Dream On Whiz Photo by Jen Kasper Media Photo courtesy of NRBC

Since showing in local shows at the age of 10, Canadian native Raphael Bourdeau always dreamed of being in the United States to compete with the “big dogs.” Bourdeau has been training with Dany Tremblay since his start here in the U.S. eight years ago, saying he just wanted to learn a good training program. The horse Bourdeau piloted to the win, adding $7,500 to their lifetime earnings, is Voodo Thatyoudo by Shiners Voodoo Dr and out of Always Gotyer Gunsup.

“This win feels good and is very special to me,” he said. “My dream has always been to compete in the U.S. at these events, so it is like a dream come true.” When asked about how the horse is in the show arena, he emphasized how big of a stopper and how great of a circler and turner the gelding is and the plan was to stay out of the penalty box. “It was good to show here; it is a very big arena, and he is a horse that can circle really hard, so he really showed off his circles,” he added. “I could run him real hard, and he is easy to prepare, he is pretty simple.” Plans for the 2018 gelding are now up to owner Christy Trautman, but he is sure to have some time off. Bordeaux thanked Dany and Fred Tremblay and all the team members and customers at Tremblay Performance Horses for their support.

Shawn Flarida and Alpha Jac Sparrow fly to the Prime Time Open Championship

NRHA Seven Million Dollar Rider Shawn Flarida can add another title to the long, long list on his résumé: The NRBC L4 Prime Time Open Champion. He piloted Alpha Jac Sparrow (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Chexanicki), bred by Alpha Quarter Horses LLC, owned by Fritz Leeman, Sam Flarida, and Cody and Katsy Flarida, to a 227.5 for the win.

The big, bay horse is no stranger to Flarida’s show string. He’s ridden Alpha Jac Sparrow to an NRHA Futurity finals and won the $40,000 Tamarak Ranch Reiners Open 4- and 5-Year-Old Stakes. He also rode the stallion in The American Performance Horseman event. “I’ve been

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Raphael Bourdeau and Voodo Thatyoudo claim Level 1 Open Classic Shawn Flarida & Alpha Jac Sparrow Photo courtesy of NRBC

2023 National Reining Breeders Classic

around him since he was a 2-yearold. Katsy rode him a lot and I then got him as a 3-year-old and made the NRHA Futurity Finals on him,” Flarida said. “He’s been a very good horse and really consistent so far.” The NRHA Hall of Fame rider pushed the stallion to a 228 in the prelims to make the L4 Finals, and the Prime Time Open Finals. “This horse is a fast mover and he’s such a big powerful horse that he does go faster than some other horses I’ve shown,” said Flarida. “When he makes a move, it is unique. Tonight was one of the first nights that I got him to run through the gate and get that first stop. Then, he circled good to the right and his circles to the left could have been better, and his big deal is that he can run and stop. The arena and the ground fit him, this was his night.”

For the Prime Time Open win, Flarida earned $1,950. The pair finished third in the L4, pocketing another $45,000.

For Fernando Salgado, it only took one run to take home a 2023 NRBC Champion title. Aboard Gunna Be The One (Gunnatrashya x Snip O Satellite), owned by Coma Ranch LLC, Fernando Salgado marked a 226.5 to win the Novice Horse division of the Open Classic.

The 4-, 5-, 6- and 7-yearolds brought the heat to Tulsa in the prelims. Andrea Fappani and All Bettss Are Off (Gunner x Wimpys Little Chic) owned by Rancho Oso Rio LLC, took the lead in the L4 preliminaries marking a whopping 230 and winning $17,306.


Gina Schumacher Pilots Gunnastepya to First NRBC Victory

For Gina Maria Schumacher, her ride in the NRBC Non Pro Classic L4 Finals aboard Gunnastepya was a lot of fun. For the judges, it was top of the class, and the 227.5 score reflected that feeling.

Schumacher, from Germany with Gordonville, Texas, being home in the United States, is an NRHA Million Dollar Rider. Gunnastepya (Gunnatrashya x SDP A Lasting Step) didn’t have quite as extensive of a résumé, but the stallion is continuing to build it, one event at a time.

“He comes to a horse show and just cruises. It doesn’t bother him to run hard,” Schumacher said. “I think this is the only horse that I say has no weak point. I’ve ridden a couple really nice ones, but he is by far the nicest I’ve ridden. He is good minded, has big turns, big stops and circles really nice.” After Schumacher’s XCS Ranch LLC purchased Gunnastepya, bred by Adh-Mor Ranch, following the NRHA Futurity, Schumacher had her hopes

for his 4-year-old year dashed when COVID restricted her from coming to the United States. Now, though, she and the 2016 stallion are clicking.

“We qualified for The Run For A Million at our first show together, but I never managed to put it all together [in a run],” she said. “He’s matured and now he is super chill, relaxed and does his job. Sometimes I get nervous, but he will do it. There is nothing I can pick on him with.”

Coming into the Non Pro Classic

Final on Friday, Schumacher didn’t plan to run Gunnastepya to his maximum. “It all went as planned today, except he didn’t circle as well as he usually does because we weren’t going as hard as we were in the Cactus Reining Classic. The faster you go, the more tuned in he gets, but I didn’t want to run him super hard because we need to go to Vegas in August, and I wanted to save some horse. He can make points in the turns and stops. He just listens to

whatever I do and if he does anything wrong, it is because I screwed up.” The young rider is now focused on getting better. “The industry is going crazy now, really good, and we breed and train our horses, and that is what I want to do at one point. That is what made me want to come here and do my best. My ultimate goal now is to train my own horses, push our breeding and the horses we raise, and promote our stallions. Triple threat, that is the dream!” she said. “I have a really good team,they work tirelessly and I am really lucky to have Duane Latimer by my side to help me be better at what I do as well as my boyfriend who pushes me, and my mom, Corinna, of course, who couldn’t be here but is behind all of this.”

For the L4 win, Schumacher won the use of a Twin Cities Trailer’s deluxe two-horse Sundowner bumper pull and a slew of other prizes, earning $50,000.

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“My ultimate goal now is to train my own horses, push our breeding and the horses we raise, and promote our stallions. Triple threat, that is the dream!”
Gina Schumacher & Gunnastepya

Level 3 and Level 2 Non Pro Classic Champions: Kelsey Price and In My Glory Days

Kelsey Price and In My Glory Days (SG Frozen Enterprize x Gunners Glory) won the Novice Horse in the Non Pro Classic Preliminary round and took the L2 and 3 Non Pro Championships scoring a 222. Her husband and trainer, Kole, thought her mare would be at peak for the finals. “She is a lot of horse, and I am eligible for a lot of levels so I could win a lot of money,” Price said. “I was just going to give it my all, I was going to go fast and that was my plan.”

Price noted the mare loves her turnout time so at the show, the plan was to continue to let her be a horse. For one of the mare’s two exercise sessions during the day, Price would take her in a hackamore on a relaxing walk at the Tulsa Expo Square. With the win in both levels, Price takes home $25,000. The Prices plan to turn the mare out at home and let her be a horse before getting her ready for the NRHA Derby.

Price thanks her husband, Kole, and their assistants and groom, who always make her looking amazing, she said. She also thanks her veterinarian and farrier. Without this team behind her she says she couldn’t have achieved this result.


2023 National Reining
Jack Medows & Fire N Rein (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Chicsdreamofdiamonds) owned by Amy Medeows, took the L4 Non Pro Reserve spot by riding to a 226.5 adding $25,000 to the duo’s lifetime earnings. Kelsey Price & In My Glory Days

Level 1 and Prime Time Non Pro Classic Champions

Paul Queen has a new goal: to win the L4 Non Pro Classic. He’s well on his way, locking down the L1 and Prime Time Championships with a 222.5 aboard Makendiamonds (Whizkey N Diamonds x Makeit In Tinseltown). “This is my first Finals and I made all four levels,” he said. “It was pretty damn cool. There were a lot of them [in the preliminaries] and to make the L4 pretty easy, was cool.”

The palomino mare nicknamed “Josie” is owned by Queen’s mother, Dorothy Queen. He rides with Jared Leclair, and the pair spent time getting Josie back to being a horse after her Futurity year. “Now, she loves to go show, and she’s getting a personality. She’ll dig a cookie

out of your pocket,” said Queen, of Whitesboro, Texas. “Sometimes you have to rehab their mind a little bit, and that is what we did with her. Now, she is doing really well. Jared and I both love her. I’m going to try and push her in the Derbies; My goal is to make her a $100,000 horse.”

His other goal is to keep climbing the Non Pro ladder. The preliminary round was tough, and while making the Finals in all divisions was not expected, Queen now aims to do it again. He knows, though, that competition is steep.” I know most of these people in here and we are not competing against one another but against ourselves to do better than the last time.”

Queen earned $2,000 for the Prime Time Non Pro Classic win, and added another $5,000 in the L1. He tied for reserve in the L2 adding another $5,000, and for the L3 adding $11,250. He and Makendiamonds placed ninth in the L4, earning another $5,750.

2022 Nominations & Leading Sires

2021 NRBC nominations: 2,674

2022 NRBC nominations: 2,914 ( the highest number of enrollments since the program’s inception in 1997)

Leading sires of enrolled foals in 2022: Spooks Gotta Whiz: 185

A Vintage Smoke: 124

Colonels Shining Gun:117

Inferno Sixty Six: 115 Spooks Gotta Spark: 108

44 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com 2023 National Reining Breeders Classic
Paul Queen & Makendiamonds Lukasz Czechowicz & CSG Wisemanfear WATCH THE RUN


DeNiroBootsCo Euro 134.000-Added IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Open

Derby: Czechowicz Reins CSG Wisemanfear to Top Honors

In front of a full house in Cremona, Italy, Poland’s Lukasz Czechowicz performed beautifully to a 227 score with CSG Wisemanfear between the reins seizing both the Euro 67.000-Added IRHA and Euro 67.000Added IRHBA Level (L)4 Open Championships.

March 28 - April 1, 2023 | CremonaFiere - Italy

Photos by Bonaga Communication

Owned by Katarzyna Roleska, the elegant 5-year-old chestnut stallion by NRHA Million Dollar Sire Colonels Shining Gun out of Tejana Chic (by NRHA Seven Million Dollar Sire Smart Chic Olena) was bred by Brent Loseke. “He’s just an amazing horse, I’m so happy for him, for me, and for the owner. He’s always great with me! Ever since I started riding him, he was cool to train and now he’s cool to show. He's a phenomenally good-minded horse,” said Czechowicz. “He was really good the whole week and I was very quiet with him in the qualifier as I didn't know what to expect in this first show of the season; our last outing was the Italian Futurity in November. He was great there, but after that, I never showed him again so I am really happy.” The Polish Professional also took third place honors by performing to a 225.5

with Roleska’s CSG Kenzo, also by Colonels Shining Gun out of Shiner Brimolena.

NRHA Million Dollar Rider Ann Fonck rode to the L4 IRHA and IRHBA Reserve Championships posting a 226.5. “I’m really happy with him and he was super nice,” said Fonck about her mount, Colonels Whize Gun by Colonels Shining Gun out of Alicias Conquistador, a 7-year-old gelding owned by Anneliese & Hermann Meinert and bred by Roel van Dijk. “Managing to make it to the winner's circle is always great for us: It’s a 16hour drive to get here, you have to

do a good job in the qualifier, and for the finals, we all hope that everything comes together. We are super happy and so are the owners with how everything turned out.”

www.internationalhorsepress.com DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Derby
Ann Fonck & Colonels Whize Gun

Level 3

Francesco Barbagli and Steppin To Amarillo, a 5-year-old palomino stallion by Steppin On Sparks out of Frosted Wimped Cream owned by Riccardo Abati, clinched the Euro 12.000-Added IRHA and Euro 12.000-Added IRHBA L3 Championships. “I started riding him around the end of February and we immediately clicked. The horse is physically small but he’s all heart. I just tried to get us connected and give him the wake-up call since one

of his characteristics is that he is very calm. The beautiful story behind this victory is that I started reining with Riccardo [Abati] at

"The collaboration and joint effort between IRHA, IRHBA, and TFY resulted in an important purse that attracted a large number of European riders showing in the IRHA/IRHBA Open and Non Pro divisions," said Doardo. "The added money offered is bound to grow in the next two years along with the number of entries, which is the goal that we set. This also gives us the opportunity of offering a better service to the competitors, horses, owners, and the public with the intent of keeping the four major reining events held in the Old Continent - the European Futurity, European Derby, Italian Derby, and Italian Futurity - in the Top 10 world rankings as far as purses are concerned. On a side note, it was a pleasure to witness the appreciation of all those present during this event."

Filippo Masi's facility. The last horse I rode owned by Riccardo was in 2003…that’s 20 years ago. After so many years, when he called me to ask me if I wanted to try the horse, I immediately accepted. The rest is history.”

The Open Derby Numbers: Added/Entries

Euro 42.000-Added IRHA L4 – 77

Euro 12.000-Added IRHA L3 – 92

Euro 7.500-Added IRHA L4 – 99

Euro 5.500-Added IRHA L1 – 54

Euro 42.000-Added IRHA/IRHBA L4 – 64

Euro 12.000-Added IRHA/IRHBA L3 – 60

Euro 7.500-Added IRHA/IRHBA L2 – 57

54 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Derby
Francesco Barbagli & Steppin To Amarillo Giancarlo Doardo, TFY Executive Director and Event Director

Level 2

Winning the Euro 7.500-Added IRHA and Euro 7.500-Added IRHBA L2 Open as well as claiming Reserve Honors in the L3 division was Italian Professional Max Ruggeri who rode Spook Sunburst (Great Sun Burst x All About Spook), owned by Silvia Garuti, to a 221. The 8-year-old gelding by multiple

NRHA Open and Non Pro World Champion Great Sun Burst was bred by Manuel Bonzano. “I am very happy with this result because he’s a very particular horse. He has already given a lot in his career and we came here following a few special events where we made the finals but then we weren't able to express ourselves. This time we

succeeded and I'm really super excited for me, the horse, and of course the owners. The day before the show he needs to work a little more to be perfect the day after. I’ve been trying to find the right way to handle the pressure for a while now and this time I can say... mission accomplished!”

Level 1

Taking home the Euro 5.500-Added IRHA L1 and Euro 5.500-Added IRHBA L1 Open Championships along with the L2 IRHA and IRHBA Reserve honors with a 218 score was Andrea Sanfelici of Italy riding Boomer Little Uno (Mister Little Uno x Make A Boom), a 6-year-old gelding owned by Cristian Gorni and bred by Francesca Zerbi.

“Boomer has been at our barn for two years now and during this period I showed him in reined cow

Max Ruggeri & Spook Sunburst

horse events winning several shows in the Open classes. The current owner is Cristian Gorni, and the goal for this season is now for him to compete in the cow horse Novice Riders classes. Two months ago, Gorni suggested entering the horse in this Derby and I obviously

ELEMENTA Breeders Award

supported him because it was a new experience I really wanted to be involved in. The horse is solid in all the maneuvers and has a lot of energy; this for sure helped in managing the whole week of competition. In the last two months, we only worked with the Derby being our goal and I also schooled him once. From now on we will get back to work for the next cow horse event.”

The Reserve Championship in both the IRHA and IRHBA Derby with a 215.5 score was Italian Serena Bertelli riding Mini Cilindro PC (Doc Classic Sire x Senorita Custom), a 7year-old gelding owned and bred by Soc.

56 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Derby
Agr. Pietracavalla. Andrea Sanfelici & Boomer Little Uno WATCH THE RUN Dance Wimpy Spook (ridden by Nico Sicuro) owned and bred by Quarter Dream Honey First Gunny (ridden by Arnaud Girinon owned by Le Fattorie Di Matilde Srl) and breeder Vittorio Rabboni The ELEMENTA Breeder's Award went to the highest scoring stallion in the IRHBA Derby Finals (Open and Non Pro all levels) bred in Italy. The Euro 5.000 paycheck went to Honey First Gunny (ridden by Arnaud Girinon and owned by Le Fattorie Di Matilde Srl) and breeder Vittorio Rabboni. The award to the highest-scoring mare bred in Italy went to Dance Wimpy Spook (ridden by Nico Sicuro) owned and bred by Quarter Dream. The latter was awarded the ELEMENTA Italian Breeder's Euro 5.000 Award.
Vittorio De Iulio & Mr Magic Chex

2023 DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Non Pro Derby

De Iulio and Mr Magic Chex Work Their Magic To Claim the IRHA and IRHBA Non Pro Derby Titles

In a field of 52 horse-rider combinations across the four levels of the Non Pro Derby Finals, 23-year-old Vittorio De Iulio and Mr Magic Chex (ARC Magic Enterprise x Miss America Chex) closed their great performance with a 221.5 score taking home the Euro21.000-Added IRHA L4 and Euro 21.000-Added IRHBA L4. They also left Cremona with the Euro 6.000-Added IRHA L3, and Euro 6.000-Added IRHBA L3 titles under their belt.

“My horse was great tonight and I could not have asked anything more of him,” said the young rider from Naples about the talented 6-year-old stallion owned by his uncle Vittorio De Iulio and bred by Angelucci Quarter Horses. “We won the qualifier so were last in the draw. The wait was long and I

was a little nervous, especially after Sára [Karásova], who showed right before me, came out with a 220. At that point I told myself I had to concentrate; the run in and stop was really good and from there on he was with me all the way giving his best.”

Taking reserve honors in both the IRHA and IRHBA L4 Derby was 19year-old Sára Karásova of the Czech Republic with her 8-year-old gelding bred by Franz Lechner, KH Yankee Step (NRHA Million Dollar Sire Rowdy Yankee x Step A Little Closer) under the saddle. "I’m super grateful to be here. I was stressed and excited at the same time, but I'm really happy with how it turned out. I’ve been riding my horse for four years now and we know each other well. I’m lucky to be able to ride him every day with the help of my trainer Jonáš Bujnoch and this year I'll show him this year as much as possible. If all goes well, next year we'll try to show him in some bronze trophies.”

Germany’s Stephanie Blessing and Smart Spook Surprise (NRHA Eight Million Dollar Sire Smart Spook x ARC Honey Chick), a 6-year-old mare owned by Grey Stone Ranch Germany GMBH and bred by Società Agricola Le Fattorie Di Matilde, scored a 218.5 to earn the IRHA and IRHBA L3 Reserve Championship. “I didn’t realize we took the Championships until I heard the final results so I’m really happy! I won the Euro Futurity L4 Non Pro with her two years ago and since then I kept on showing her and she’s always done really well.

The Non Pro Derby Numbers: Added/Entries

Euro 21.000-Added IRHA L4 – 35

Euro 6.000-Added IRHA L3 – 54

Euro 3.500-Added IRHA L2 – 89

Euro 2.500-Added IRHA L1 – 68

Euro 21.000-Added IRHA/IRHBA L4 – 31

Euro 6.000-Added IRHA/IRHBA L3 – 40

Euro 3.500-Added IRHA/IRHBA L2 – 52

Euro 2.500-Added IRHA/IRHBA L1 – 36

• IHP CHRONICLE • 59 www.internationalhorsepress.com

Tonight I didn’t expect her to be lazy, and was waiting for her to ignite any minute, but she did good and brought home a nice paycheck. Next year she will join our brood mare string so I am going to enjoy her in the show pen until the end of the show season.”

60 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Derby
Sára Karásova & KH Yankee Step Stephanie Blessing & Smart Spook Surprise

Level 2

Tying to win the Euro 3.500-Added

IRHA and Euro 3.500-Added

IRHBA L2 Non Pro Championships with a 216 was Belgium’s Jody Fonck riding Smart Spooky Joe (NRHA

Two Million Dollar Sire Lil Joe Cash x Spookody), a 7-year-old gelding owned by J&J Comm. V bred by Jean Louis Coutrot, and Georgia

Wilk of Germany riding her Pretty Whiz Chic (Winnie The Boo x Rey Nic Chic), a 6-year-old mare bred by Jessica Dros.

“I have an amazing horse! He was

super nice during the whole show. We have had him since November; he has an amazing mind and a heart of gold. I am so thankful to have him and to have the chance to show him. I ride him every day but since I went to the U.S. for two weeks with my dad [NRHA Two Million Dollar Rider Bernard Fonck] before coming here, during that time my mum [NRHA Million Dollar Rider Ann Fonck] rode him, and I really want to thank her for what she did for us,” said Jody.

Wilk was just as pleased with her mou nt. "We purchased her as a 3year-old and sometimes she’s not so easy but I’m very happy with how she

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Jody Fonck & Smart Spooky Joe Georgia Wilk & Pretty Whiz Chic WATCH THE RUN WATCH THE RUN

went today. My trainer, Johannes Heil, was great and was there for me day and night. My mare rode to her personal highest score in the qualifier and I was already overwhelmed with that. In the Finals, I turned my head off and ran in. I don’t know how it happened, but somehow it did!"

Level 1

Sara Galimberti of Italy and Georg Wiedenhofer of Germany also chose to share the Euro 2.500-Added

IRHA L1 Non Pro Championship after posting a 211. Galimberti rode her own Late Little Whiz (NRHA Four Million Dollar Sire Walla Walla

64 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com DeNiroBootsCo IRHA/IRHBA/NRHA Derby
Georg Wiedenhofer & Don Magnetic WATCH THE RUN WATCH THE RUN Sara Galimberti & Late Little Whiz

Whiz x Late Little Jaba), a 7-year-old Silvia Sgaggio-bred stallion. Wiedenhofer, who also clinched the IRHBA L1 Reserve Championship, showed Don Magnetic (Chic Magnetic x Donnola Chex), a 7-yearold gelding bred by Luigi Parise. “My horse was amazing in the show pen!” Galimberti told. “He always makes me feel comfortable, and is always with me. He has a lot of talent and I’m not always able to bring it out, but we are improving. I've been riding him for about two years, and he definitely gave me the chance to grow with him. I ride with professional Silvia Venezia, whom I have to thank because she knows how to bring out the best from all the

horses and her non pros as well.”

For Wiedenofer, taking home two titles was a thrill. "I'm really happy with this result; we went well in the qualifier while in the Final I could have done better in the first stop but at the end of the day, I am really happy with this result. I have been riding this horse for three years now, with the help of my trainer Grischa [Ludwig], and this year I'll be showing him in all the derbies."

Rebecca Sudati and her Gun Spark Hollywood (One Gun x Duna Smoke), a 7-year-old American Paint Horse mare bred by Manuel Balzani, scored a 214.5 to win the

Euro 1.500-added IRHBA L1 Non Pro Championship.

“I'm really happy because in the qualifier I wasn't able to do very well, and I only managed to make it to the IRHBA Derby Finals. I've had my mare for three years and I showed her in the Euro Futurity where we were Level 1 Co-Champions. I didn’t show her for a while and since we still have this year and next year to compete in the Derby we hope to come back stronger. I would really like to thank my trainer Angelo Benedusi and all his team, my vet Christian Corradini, and my farrier Carlo Vercesi. Without them we would not have been able to achieve this result.”

• IHP CHRONICLE • 65 www.internationalhorsepress.com
Rebecca Sudati & Gun Spark Hollywood WATCH THE RUN


“The IRHBA (International Reining Horse Breeder Association) incentive program is the backbone of the 3year-old Italian Reining Horse Association Futurity guaranteeing important purses,” says IRHBA President and Italian breeder Roberto Cuoghi. “Following years of planning, the concept of extending the program to 4-5-6-7- and 8-yearold horses has finally come to fruition and the 2023 IRHBA Derby results have confirmed the success of this addition to the program. Because the show season had begun, in order to make the transition easy for everyone, all horses could enter the €100.000,00 IRHA Derby without having their horse subscribed in the IRHBA Program, and the same amount was offered to those horses enrolled in the IRHBA Derby. The large number of entries confirm this project, a collaboration between IRHA, IRHBA, and TFY, is bound to grow and now riders will have the enviable opportunity of showing their horses in five Derbies.”

The Program

Following a study regarding the numbers of horses entered in the Futurity and the Derby, it was noted that even though the Futurity purse is very interesting, over the years the numbers have remained relatively stable while there has been a significant increase at the Derby. It was therefore thought that this event should be given more prestige.

The new program is open to young horses and works alongside BIP as an incentive for reining horse breeders. The goal is to collect

resources that will be destined to the purse of the IRHA/IRHBA DERBY guaranteeing a higher purse. In this edition €200.000,00 were distributed. In 2024 the added money will be €260.000,00 and in 2025 it will be €320.000,00

Keeping Animal Welfare in mind, the program provides an opportunity to compete in an event offering an important purse which is not destined exclusively to 3 year olds, but also to aged horses allowing them to mature and grow both physically and on an athletic level. It is also destined to give an opportunity to those who do not have their horses ready for the 3year-old events to show in other important events. This new program, added on to the 3-year- old Futurity Breeder Program (IRHBA stallions and foals), provides the opportunity of having FIVE Breeder Derbies with important purses.

For conditions to enroll your foals born starting from 2015, visit IRHBA.com

66 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com
IRHBA Derby Breeders Program



“This Championship is particularly important for the sport of reining because it focuses on the grass roots,” said Stefano Serni, FISE Reining Advisory Commission Member. “The majority of riders is juniors and young riders and these may ride their own horse as well as a horse owned by a riding stable. This is extremely important for those riding facilities that also offer riding lessons. The riders qualified during 2022 and the finals are held here during the IRHA/IRHBA Derby and I truly believe it’s the best location and event to further grow the numbers.”

• IHP CHRONICLE • 67 www.internationalhorsepress.com
1. Federica Faccincani & Energia Elettrica PC 2. Angelo Giuliani & Thaz A Boom 3.Gloria Buonfino & SH Magic Peseta GREEN LEVEL FINALS 1. Greta Spitaler & The Remedy Isa Smile 2. Gloria Buonfino & SH Magic Peseta 3. Keira Simonetti & SH Lithium Gunnastar SHORT STIRRUP FINALS 1. Luna Bonanni & Ercolino Night 2. Veronica Barbagli & SC Sparks N Ice 3.Tommaso Proto & Prettys Fireman



During COVID, when everything came to a standstill, a group of reining enthusiasts came together to bring the Czech NRHA affiliate back to life. The affiliate had been founded in the early 2000s, but soon dispersed for various reasons and Czech reiners had to travel abroad to show in NRHAapproved events.

In 2020, when NRHA Czech was reborn, Czech reiners had the opportunity to show in their home country as the second generation of reining enthusiasts took over the reins.

Founded by a group of reining matadors – from quarter horse breeders, past reining champion owners, to NRHA Professionals – in 2020 NRHA Czech was established thanks to the supporters of the affiliate and its program. Amongst them was NRHA Professional Jonáš Bujnoch who currently serves as the Sports Manager of the affiliate.

“The idea to renew NRHA Czech came after several years of traveling to other countries such as Austria and Poland to qualify for the 2017 NRHA European Affiliate Championship (EAC) held at Roleski Ranch in Poland. We realized we had quite a few Czech riders competing outside the country so we started thinking about how we could proceed to create our own affiliate.” In the fall of 2019, at Roleski Ranch, Jonáš and a few other Czech trainers and horse owners sat down to put together a plan. “It took us a couple of months to do the paperwork and communicate with NRHA, but the following year, we had a running affiliate and two shows scheduled.”

The idea came just in time as in late 2019 the Fédération Équestre Internationale (FEI) announced reining was no longer recognized as a non-Olympic discipline. Bujnoch explains: “Some of our clients showed in Czech Equestrian Federation (CJF) shows; since our NF was under FEI, this meant that we would have fewer reining shows in our country and reinforced the decision to create an affiliate in order to host NRHA sanctioned shows in our country providing more reining shows to attend.” The first

season was during the toughest year for the equine industry. In the beginning, the plan was to have three shows, but due to COVID, the last one in the fall was canceled. “Of course, people were unsure of the situation, so we didn’t have very many members to start with as they didn’t want to pay the membership just for one show. No one knew if we would be able to put on another one that year so we started slowly; in spite of that, the first show in Kozlovice was a huge success and I think all competitors enjoyed it.”

After the first season, NRHA Czech recognized the top 10 riders in 10 classes with year-end awards in order to motivate riders to compete at more shows over the season, and to be eligible for the awards, riders have to take part in at least three shows. In 2021, NRHA CZECH members were close to 80, and the membership keeps growing.

“We now plan several Rookie Days during the year where non-members are able to participate and, at NRHA Czech shows, we offer classes that are not only for members such as Any Horse/Any Rider, Green Rider, etc. The goal is to attract more riders to show in these reining classes with their horses or with horses they do not own. We now host Czech shows in Slovakia and Poland to make it easier for people to show in their own region. We want to open the door to first-time reiners as well and show everyone what reining is about and why so many people around the world love it.”

Bujnoch has a clear vision for the future: “My wish is to bring our shows to a level where more international riders will participate. We would like to keep the four shows we have now and finish the season strong with a derby or maturity making the shows more attractive.”

Jonáš concludes by thanking all the supporters of NRHA Czech. “We are very fortunate to have many significant sponsors and supporters of our affiliate and its shows. Some are horse owners and breeders, some are not even from the industry, but they are big fans of the sport. We are very thankful for their contribution.”

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NRHA Professional Łukasz Czechowicz Shares His Knowledge in Italy

Renzo Canciani and his wife Roberta's SSD Canciani Team hosted NRHA Professional Łukasz Czechowicz on January 28-29, in Gottolengo, Italy, for a two-day clinic.

“Lukasz is without a doubt a top trainer and, in my opinion, has a very personalized work program. Since I always like to discover new training techniques, I thought of proposing this clinic," said host Canciani. "Understanding how he interprets the sport of reining and his approach to training was very interesting. Consistency and patience are the keywords I would use to describe his way of working; added to the enviable and absolute certainty of the positive outcome of the exercises he proposes. During these two days, we had the opportunity of seeing that this method works for any horse and any rider. All the riders, b oth non pros and open, were enthusiastic, which obviously makes me really happy. I would like to thank Łukasz for everything he shared with us, with the hope of having him back among us soon."

Czechowicz, head trainer for Katarzyna Roleski's Roleski Ranch, was thrilled with the outcome of his second clinic at SSD Canciani Team's facility. "I enjoyed this second clinic as much as the first one. The atmosphere here is really special," he shared. "I found a good level of riders

and horses: Young horses in training for the futurities and aged horses, and both non professional and open riders who took part in the clinic. Basically, a good group with whom it was fun to work with! I tried to be as useful as possible and I hope I was able to help everyone a little. I did my best to clearly explain my

program and, in that regard, it was good to have different levels of horses and riders so we could see the outcome on all the participants. This winter has been full of clinics all over Europe and this makes me happy as it is for sure an amazing satisfaction!"

Renowned horseman Pierre Ouellet, interpreter for Czechowicz added: “What I especially noticed during this clinic is that Łukasz's method is very gentle, very progressive, and is very structured. In fact, it sometimes is disconcertingly simple. His strong point is repetition, without putting pressure, and he manages the horses to perform the required exercises without forcing them. His method puts the horse in a position to go and look for, and like, what he's asking for; basically, the horse performs the requested maneuver because he wants to do it.

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"It's certainly a much longer way to build a horse but in the long term one that provides a more solid foundation. I personally have always believed that it was right to spend more time in the beginning and then gain time later because once you have a solid base you can build on top of it. His method is simple to understand for all levels of riders and horses, and this was a very interesting thing to identify. I feel I can say that this talented Polish Professional, despite his young age, showed us the right mentality and the right working method for the future of reining and the world of horse riding in general. He provides us with the opportunity to train horses in the most correct way and it is truly suitable for everyone."

Look out for the full article on Czechowitcz' training methods in our upcoming IHP Chronicle.


Photos by International Horse Press By


The inaugural one-of-a-kind "Elementa Goes West" show features Halter, Ranch Riding, Ranch Trail, Western Pleasure, Trail, Western Riding, Ranch Conformation, Showmanship, Western Horsemanship, and Mountain Trail.

June 16 - 18, 2023 | Bracciano, Italy

Approved by AQHA (American Quarter Horse Association), APHA (American Paint Horse Association), and AIQH (Associazione Italiana Quarter Horse). AQHA and APHA approved classes will be run concurrently class in class and the show will be judged by Marilyn Randall on Friday and Saturday, and by Charlene Carter on Sunday.

This event promises to offer exciting and fun-filled days for all horse enthusiasts. Whether you are a seasoned rider or a beginner, Elementa welcomes you to join in and showcase your skills in the ' spirit of the West' disciplines.

Saddle up and get ready to show off your western riding abilities at "Elementa Goes West!" For info www.ELEMENTARESORT.com

*The schedule is temporary


Western Pleasure AII Ages | Prize Money €7.000,00

Western Riding AII Ages | Prize Money €4.000,00

Trail All Ages | Prize Money €7.000,00

Ranch Trail All Ages | Prize Money €4.000,00

Ranch Riding All Ages | Prize Money €7.000,00

72 • IHP CHRONICLE • www.internationalhorsepress.com


Friday, June 16 | 9 am

Pay Time Western Pleasure

Pay Time Ranch Riding

Pay Time Ranch Trail

Pay Time TraiI

Friday, June 16 | 4 pm

AQHA/APHA Trail Open L1 ( Green)

AQHA/APHA Trail Amateur L1 (Novice)

AQHA/APHA Trail Youth L1 (Novice)

AQHA/APHA Trail Open

AQHA/APHA Trail Amateur

AQHA/APHA Trail Youth

Saturday, June 17 | 9 am

AQHA Halter Open (stallions, mares, geldings)

AQHA Halter Amateur (stallions, mares, geldings)

AQHA HaIter Youth (mares,geldings)

APHA Halter Open (stallions, mares, geldings)

APHA Halter Amateur (stallions, mares, geldings)

APHA Ha Iter Youth (mares,geldings)

AQHA/APHA Showmanship at Halter Amateur L1

AQHA/APHA Showmanship at HaIter Youth L1

AQHA/APHA Showmanship at Halter Amateur

AQHA/APHA Showmanship at HaIter Youth

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure L1 Open

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure L1 Amateur

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure L1 Youth

Lunch break

AQHA/APHA Western Horsemanship Amateur

AQHA/APHA Western Horsemanship Youth

AQHA/APHA Western Riding Open

AQHA/APHA Western Riding Amateur

AQHA/APHA Western Riding Youth

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding Open L1

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding L1 Amateur

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding L1 Youth

Sunday, June 18 | 9 am

AQHA/APHA Ranch Trail Open

AQHA/APHA Ranch Trail Amateur

AQHA/APHA Ranch Trail Youth

AQHA/APHA Western Riding L1 Open

AQHA/APHA Western Riding L1 Amateur

AQHA/ APHA Western Riding L1 Youth

Lunch break

AQHA/APHA Western Horsemanship L1 Amateur

AQHA/APHA Western Horsemanship L1 Youth

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure Open

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure Amateur

AQHA/APHA Western Pleasure Youth

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding Open

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding Amateur

AQHA/APHA Ranch Riding Youth

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2023 Western Bloodstock | High Brow Cat | Hashtags

World’s Greatest Horseman

Magical Win for Phillip Ralls and Call Me Mitch

This year’s edition of the Western Bloodstock | High Brow Cat | Hashtags World’s Greatest Horseman was a pretty special one for NRCHA Million Dollar Rider Phillip Ralls and the incredibly talented stallion Call Me Mitch. The duo closed with a final composite score of 902 (H:224/S:226/R:224.5/C:227), the highest ever marked at this event. They took home the Championship and a prize of $150,000 making Call Me Mitch the highest money-earning horse in NRCHA history with earnings exceeding $425,000.

February 10-20, 2023 | Fort Worth - USA


Ralls and “Mitch” go back a long way: the Paso Robles horseman purchased the stallion as a yearling at the Western Bloodstock Sale for his client, Estelle Roitblat. Prior to passing, Roitblat set up the trust to ensure Call Me Mitch had all the opportunities that he possibly could with Ralls who has shown him his whole career. The duo has won numerous accolades including the World's Richest Stock Horse Championship four times — once on Call Me Mitch — and the Magnificent Seven All Around Stock Horse Championship at the Western States Horse Expo, also on Mitch. The duo also claimed Reserve honors at the World’s Greatest Horseman twice: This year they had a plan!

Phillip Ralls & Call Me Mitch

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Ralls’ facility in Paso Robles, California, was flooded for seven weeks following the torrential rainfalls and they were only able to practice in the arena two weeks prior to the World’s Greatest Horseman, but that didn’t stop Ralls from keeping hopes high. “He’s always been absolutely incredible. He was a great futurity horse, a really good derby horse, and an even better bridle horse; I don’t need to teach him anything so keeping him fit was what we did in those five weeks,” says Ralls.

Once the games began, the explosive stallion once again showed his worth and the pair came in with the secondhighest composite going into the finals. "My Dad’s advice to me leading up to the finals was to stick to my game plan, let it roll, and have fun. All too often we let the outside influence get to us and that's where your mistakes and bobbles are going to come from. Stick to what you have, you know what you need to do, and go for it," shared Ralls who has been training open horses for the past 23 years learning from his dad, Ron Ralls, an NRCHA Million Dollar Rider, twotime World's Greatest Horseman Champion and a Hall of Fame Inductee.

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Photos by Martina Tonello Photography
“This is a testament to his consistency, his heart, his try. He’s such a unique individual. He's truly a blessing.”
Head in the game

Ralls kept his head in the game and once again Mitch did not disappoint. They closed the herd work with a 224, the steer stopping with a 226, and the reining with a 224.5. And then it was time for the last test: The fence work.

“The fence work was where I really wanted to show who he is; his heart, his soul, his determination,” he said. “We had a really good strong cow, one that you could win on, and this gave me a good opportunity to get the run set up. Once that first turn happened, the second turn was really good and the cow was set up in the right spot. It was then that I knew we had a really good shot at getting it down the fence and Mitch finished super strong.”

The family circle

At the end of their performance, a 227 appeared on the scoreboard and the dream came true closing the family circle. In fact, his father Ron has won the World’s Greatest Horseman title twice, and his father’s wife, Patty Ralls, won the World’s Greatest Horsewoman held at Art of the Cowgirl in 2020.

“It’s always been a dream of mine to have an opportunity to show at this level. We’ve been so close twice and Mitch has just been absolutely incredible. He’s been so consistent, and such a big-time, big-game horse. It’s all come full circle—it was a dream of Estelle’s to have a horse like this, and a dream of mine to ride and compete on one like him.”


1- Call Me Mitch

(Metallic Cat X Miss Hickory Hill) shown by Phillip Ralls

Owner Estelle Roitblat TTE Liv Trus

2 - Reyzinette

(Dual Rey X Sheza Shinette) shown by Chris Dawson

Owned by Holy Cow Perf. Horses TX LLC

3 - Bet Hesa Boon

(Bet Hesa Cat X Flo N Blu Boon) shown by Tyler Merrill

Owned by Beverly Servi

3 - Smartly Starstruck

(Very Smart Remedy X Katie Starlight) shown by Todd Bergen

Owned by McSpyder Ranch

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Phillip Ralls & Call Me Mitch Tyler Merrill & Bet Hesa Boon
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Chris Dawson & Reyzinette Todd Bergen & Smartly Starstruck
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2023 NCHA of Italy The Show Season Kicks Off in Renewed CremonaFiere Setting

NCHA of Italy's show season fired off in a renewed CremonaFiere setting with the first NCHA-approved show of the year held on February 24-26. Giancarlo Doardo’s TFY welcomed the 2023 Cutting Championship Show counting 70 horses and over 200 entries in the full-slate of approved classes offered.

February 24-26, 2023 | CremonaFiere - Italy

Fanti and Valeri lead the Open All Ages divisions

Federico Fanti and Never Too Suen, owned by Hansruedi Baumann, scored a 75 to top the NCHA of Italy/NCHA Open All Ages First Show. With the same score Pietro Valeri rode Marco Salvatori’s Denvers Purdy to top the Open All Ages Second Show.

It was all about the girls in the Non Pro divisions with Bembom and Tresoldi in the lead

Rosana Bembom aboard Back Street Cat owned by Willem Bembom took the lead of the NCHA of Italy/NCHA Non Pro All Ages First Show, while Martina Tresoldi rode Genuine Alley Cat owned by

"NCHA of Italy opened the show season in the renewed CremonaFiere layout and our collaboration will continue all year," says TFY Executive Director Giancarlo Doardo. "For us, it is a great honor to host the cutting association, not only for the long-time friendship between us but also for the sport itself. Competitors come to show from all over Europe and really like the location. We will work alongside the association to further improve the facility, and we aim to face this season with a location that is not only functional but also beautiful. Cutting is growing, with constant incremental rates, and I think that by the end of the year we’ll be able to close the season with a 15% overall increase. This is a ‘marriage’ that works very well and we will do our best, aware that the path we've taken is the right one for everyone."

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Federico Fanti & Never Too Suen Pietro Valeri & Denvers Purdy
NCHA of Italy/NCHA

Davide Tresoldi to win the Non Pro All Ages Second Show. Both scored a big 75.

The NCHA of Italy 4-year-old Open Class was dominated by Denis Pini who scored a 73 to top the rankings aboard the American Quarter Horse mare Puddy Tags owned by Andrea Parolini.

Youth rider Riccardo Pini piloted his own Merada Dreamcatcher to a 72 score to top the NCHA of Italy/NCHA Youth Class


From the NCHA of Italy President

"We got off to a great start, and that's the most important thing. A high number of horses entered this first show, definitely more than we expected so early in the season," said Marco Salvatori, NCHA of Italy President. "We expect an intense season here at CremonaFiere with its new format, as well as one-day jackpot classics. We already have beautiful events planned and, as always, we are very happy that many European riders continue to join us at our shows." Partner in life and in the cutting world, Salvatori's wife Rosanna added: "We are very happy with this first show's turnout, and we are already working on the upcoming event, the Challenge Futurity, which will take place March 16-19 here in the great Cremona venue."

Rosana Bembom & Back Street Cat Martina Tresoldi & Genuine Alley Cat Denis Pini & Puddy Tags Riccardo Pini & Merada Dreamcatcher Photos by Bonaga Communication By Chiara

NCHA Of Italy/NCHA Challenge Futurity

Once again the renewed CremonaFiere opened its doors to European cutters competing for the prestigious NCHA of Italy/NCHA Challenge Futurity titles. Open riders had the chance to show the best 4-year-old horses in Europe while the Non Pro division was open to 5-year-olds.

Double win for Fanti

Winning the Open Championship was Federico Fanti, who rode to a 143 composite score with both his mounts: One To Three (Third Cutting x Oneta Faye) owned by Damiano Avigni, and ZM Adrian Sannlena (Sannman x Bonita Pistolenas) owned by Massimo Zoppelletto.

“I’m of course very happy; sharing the CoChampionship with both my horses is something to be proud of. The herd was tough and drawing first wasn't an easy task. My second horse [ZM Adrian Sannlena] surprised me a lot. I didn't expect to win with him since he doesn't have much experience in the show pen, but with time he is proving to be more and more solid. Obviously, a special thank you goes to the owners, my team, and the turnbacks that helped in the arena.”

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Italy/NCHA Challenge Futurity
Federico Fanti & One To Three Federico Fanti & ZM Adrian Sannlena March 16-19, 2023 | CremonaFiere - Italy

Traverso claims the Non Pro Championship

With a 146 composite score, Ilaria Traverso and Rosepetalsinthasand (Sannman x Kitty Can Dual) owned by Sergio Traverso won the Non Pro title. “I am at a loss for words to describe this feeling. We bought this mare last year, basically because of her bloodline. She’s a bit difficult, but I had so much fun with her during this show. A big thank you goes to Federico Fanti who trained her all last year, and to Alessandro Fulceri, currently head trainer at our Ongaresca Horses. He’s been riding her for less than two months now but it looks like she fits his training program perfectly.”

Winning the Challenge Futurity Limited Non Pro as well as the Non Pro Reserve Championships with a 145 composite score was Katona Imre of Hungary aboard his own Another Bullet (Once in a Blu Boon x Smooth As A Twist).

With a 141 composite, Asia Boni and her own Dont Even Talk (Quixotes Pep Talk x Shesa Little Cat) were crowned Limited Non Pro Reserve Champions.

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Ilaria Traverso & Rosepetalsinthasand Katona Imre & Another Bullet Asia Boni & Dont Even Talk Photos by Bonaga Communication

Ancillary Action

All Ages First Show

All Ages Second

Non Pro All Ages First Show

Pro All Ages Second Show

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NCHA of Italy/NCHA Open Federico Fanti and Tassa Mia Cat 012 (Cats Quixotes Jack x Uno Tassa Mia) owned by Elisa Artioli. Score 73. NCHA of Italy/NCHA Open Show Denis Pini and Genuine Alley Cat (Metallic Cat x Gabreyella) owned by Davide Tresoldi. Score 73. NCHA of Italy/NCHA Sara Antonini and Metal Mania (Metallic Cat x Getta Mister) owned by Silvia Viaggi. Score 74. NCHA of Italy/NCHA Non Gaia Salvatori and Metallic Savanah (Metallic Cat x Savanah Holli) owned by Marco Salvatori. Score 75.

2023 NCHA of Italy

Returns to CremonaFiere for Another Great Event

With six nations represented (Czech Republic, Germany, Israel, Italy, Principality of Monaco, Switzerland) yet another great cutting show took place in Cremona.

March 20-23, 2023 |

CremonaFiere - Italy

Valeri and Salvatori win the Open All Ages divisions

Pietro Valeri and Vino Cappuccino scored a 74 to lead the NCHA of Italy/NCHA Open All Ages First Show. With the same score, Gaia Salvatori and Twisted Red Faye topped the Open All Ages Second Show. Both horses are owned by Marco Salvatori.

Girl power hits in the Non Pro divisions with Antonini and Salvatori topping the rankings. Two big 75 scores for Vittoria Antonini aboard Silvia Viaggi’s Trendzetter in the NCHA of Italy/NCHA Non Pro All Ages First Show and Greta Salvatori with Cat Rey Lou, owned by Marco Salvatori, to win the Non Pro All Ages Second Show.

Judge’s Talk

Let’s hear it from NCHA Three Million Dollar Rider and NCHA Riders Hall of Fame Inductee Faron Hightower, who judged the NCHA of Italy Championship.

“I was in Travagliato about 10 years ago and this is my second time over here," shared Hightower. "I found a huge improvement since then, and the riders are doing a really good job. I think many could easily go to the U.S. and be competitive as their level is basically what I see back home. I was impressed by the number of cowgirls and kids here that ride really well. The biggest difference between here and America lies simply in the number: more riders, more horses, and above all more cattle.”

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Pietro Valeri & Vino Cappuccino Gaia Salvatori & Twisted Red Faye
NCHA of Italy/NCHA

USA #Spotlight

Salvatori rides to the 2023 NCHA NRR Cat King Cole Super Stakes Amateur Semi Finals. Marco Salvatori flew back to the U.S., this time to show his Paydey (Stevie Rey Von x Zen And Tonic) in the 2023 NCHA NRR Cat King Cole Super Stakes presented by Beechfork Ranch.

The NCHA of Italy 4-year-old Open Class was dominated by Gianluca Munarini who won with a 73 riding Nosey Man for owner Rosana Bembom. “I bred this horse, and later Rosana [Bembom] purchased him,” Munarini said. “He is a good horse, sometimes a little spooky, but once he starts working the cows he’s perfect. He reads every kind of cow very well, especially the tough ones.”

The NCHA of Italy 5-year-old Non Pro Class was dominated by Ilaria Traverso who scored a 72 to top the leaderboard riding Rosepetalinthesann, a mare owned by Sergio Traverso.

The pair made the Amateur Semi Finals, a success in itself, in particular considering his talented gelding resides in the Staes. “After the wonderful experience at the NCHA Futurity, we tried to compete in the Super Stakes. I'm really happy as it was a great experience; the show went quite well and we made the Semi-Finals. Unfortunately, we missed the Finals by just a few points, but it was my mistake in managing the third cow I cut. The level of competition there is very high, with a lot of entries, and most importantly excellent horses and riders. Having the opportunity to show there also helps one grow and I believe it’s important to be judged there as t is fundamental to really manage the run, even in the smallest details. My horse is a greatminded gelding who is maturing and I love him. At the moment we plan on him staying in the United States with the idea, work permitting, of going back to show soon.”

Vittoria Antonini & Trendzetter Greta Salvatori & Cat Rey Lou Gianluca Munarini & Nosey Man Ilaria Traverso & Rosepetalinthesann Photos by Bonaga Communication Photo courtesy of Rosy o’ Grady’s Cutting Horses by Video West Production