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The Norco Experience

Take a ride with a hometown author through Horsetown USA

By Audrey Pavia | for the Horsetrader - October 4th, 2018

EDITOR’S NOTE: Longtime Norco resident Audrey Pavia, an award-winning author and avid horsewoman, shares a slice of life in her beloved community by taking us on one of her favorite routes.

Norco residents pose for a 2013 community photo by photographer Brigitte Jouxtel at Pike’s Peak Park to commemorate an iconic Pedley Field Photo taken 15 years earlier.

Norco residents pose for a 2013 community photo by photographer Brigitte Jouxtel at Pike’s Peak Park to commemorate an iconic Pedley Field Photo taken 15 years earlier.

Brigitte Jouxtel photo

The sun is hanging low in the sky, and the gentle afternoon breeze has arrived. It’s time to saddle up my Spanish Mustang, Milagro, and go for a ride through Norco.

I step outside my back door and Milagro whinnies to me. He knows the drill. I saddle him up and lead him to the front yard. We pick up the trail right across the street from my house. That’s how easy it is to go riding in Norco.

We head south on the Hillside Avenue trail, passing an assortment of paddocks and driveways. Milagro takes a good look at a peacock perched on a fence in a nearby yard. He’s familiar with the flock of feral peacocks that live on this part of Hillside. He then glances up at a yard across the street, where a few alpacas, a miniature horse and two Haflingers are sharing their dinner. There’s always something interesting to see in Norco.

The trail curves and we are on Third Street, headed toward Norco High School. We cross third and walk along the narrow dirt shoulder skirting the high school football field. The field is quiet today, and we pass without incident, turning right on Second Street. This is the way we need to go if we want to pass our first landmark for the ride: Disney’s Circle D Ranch.

10 tips to tame the Bureaucracy

Lessons learned in getting important issues achieved at agencies

By LYNN BROWN / for the Horsetrader - August 31st, 2018

1809a_coverEDITOR’S NOTE: Los Angeles horsewoman Lynn Brown has been a leading activist for equestrians for decades, helping horse groups navigate unfamiliar terrain of municipal government when important issues arise. Most recently, she worked with friends to successfully oppose a land use proposal in the Burbank-Glendale area that, if passed, would have replaced a legacy stable with condominiums.

The adage, “you can’t fight City Hall,” is not true—you can! Some may try and find that the cards seem stacked against them, or that the opposition was better organized. I’d like to provide some suggestions that have worked—and now is the time. These days, preserving equestrian life in many communities requires that its horsepeople to take up the fight.

The first challenge is to be positive, to know you can make a difference. It’s not always easy. In our recent battle to preserve the Silver Spur Stables from being demolished and rebuilt as small-lot housing, the task at first seemed impossible. We tackled it anyway, and to our surprise, we won—the individual who had applied to Glendale City Council for a zoning change, suddenly after months of relentless opposition, withdrew his request. If he had been successful in obtaining the zoning change, it would spell the end of all the historic boarding barns and feed stores along Riverside Drive.

NSHA Futurity Week moves to Las Vegas

New venue, new sponsors and new energy greet tradition of the cow horse way

Special to the Horsetrader - August 8th, 2018

1808a_coverLAS VEGAS, Nev.—There’s deeply rooted tradition in the discipline of reined cow horse, and the horsemen and horsewomen preparing for fall aged events will surely abide by the time-honored techniques and practices that make this sport so beloved.

But innovation surrounds the events that showcase these horses, and no one has been more leading-edge than the National Stock Horse Association, which is moving its signature event from Paso Robles to Las Vegas this year.

South Point Hotel and Casino, designed and built with equestrians in mind, will host the 2018 NSHA Futurity, Derby and World’s Richest Stock Horse competition Aug. 21-26. It will be the first time this event, which began decades ago as a summer coming out party for trainers to show their 3-year-old prospects before the venerable National Reined Cow Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity, takes place outside California—the cradle of reined cow horse. The NRCHA moved its World Championship Snaffle Bit Futurity to Fort Worth, Texas, last year.

Reiner Shine

CRHA talent converges on LAEC for weekend of top competition

Special to the Horsetrader - July 1st, 2018

1807A CoverBURBANK — Under a cloudless sky, the Reiner Shine horse show at the Los Angeles Equestrian Center on June 8-10 brought together some of Southern California’s best reining horses and riders.

The event, put on by the California Reining Horse Association, marked the second opportunity for competitors to qualify for the National Reining Horse Association Futurity later this year in Oklahoma.

Riding her Gunna Juice You, Marilyn Scheffers marked a 72.5 and swept the NRHA Non Pro and Intermediate Non Pro classes in a Saturday highlight. Close on her heels with a 72 was Allison Williams riding her RickyCacInHollywood. Williams placed second behind Scheffers in the NRHA Non Pro.

Rich rewards

Hard work, dedication and talent add up to success for Temecula-based reined cow horse trainer Roy Rich

From Horsetrader staff - May 1st, 2018

1805A CoverTEMECULA — May has been marked on the calendar at Roy Rich’s barn since winter, and for good reason.
Last year, he enjoyed a record year that culminated in the National Reined Cow Horse Association Open Bridle Championship with Very Smart Luck (Very Smart Remedy x Gunna Be Lucky x Gunna Smoke). But just before the NRCHA Celebration of Champions in Fort Worth, Texas, the 7-year-old gelding underwent colic surgery and was forced to the sidelines until this month.

Very Smart Luck, owned by Rocking J Ranch, was acquired from Annie Reynolds as a yearling, and the pair’s success has been a testimony to the hard work, dedication and talent of the Temecula-based trainer.
We took an opportunity to talk to Roy between rides.

Roy, what sets last year apart for you?
It’s the first time that I’d won an Open Bridle year-end with SCCRHA, and it’s really the first big open bridle stuff that I’ve won. I’ve been second a few times in the local level and I’ve placed, but I’ve never had a real big win in the Open Bridle, so that’s a big accomplishment for me.

What does the NRCHA Open Bridle National Championship mean to you?
To win it, you have to show a lot and place. So it just means that the horse was a strong contender every time he showed. Consistency is hard to find in a horse that is shown a lot. Sometimes they get pretty smart in the show pen and other things like that. To have him just be “on it” everywhere we went last year was a big accomplishment.

Nassar on top

SoCal-based Egyptian rider stars again in HITS Coachella

- April 1st, 2018

1804A CoverTHERMAL — The dust has settled from an ambitious 2018 HITS Desert Circuit, and the pinnacle prizes once again were pinned on Nayel Nassar, the 27-year-old Southern California-based rider who represents Egypt. Riding the 14-year-old Hannoverian Lordan, Nassar won HITS Coachella’s prestigious pair — the Longines $100,000 FEI on Feb. 11, and the AIG $1 Million Grand Prix March 18 — in a prodigious sweep for the record books.

“I’m really trying to preserve him as much as I can,” Nassar told reporters after the FEI win. “He’s had a couple of injuries and we have a long year ahead. I’m just stoked to have him and to have him come out so strong. He’s a trier and we know each other well, which helps with the little intricacies on course.”

In the AIG $1 Million, Nassar earned $350,000 for the win. Rowan Willis settled for runner-up with the 12-year-old Blue Movie, and in third was Paul O’Shea with Skara Glen’s Presence.
The top five was rounded out by Christian Heineking on NKH Caruso in fourth and Erynn Ballard with Fantast in fifth.

Ready for Scottsdale

Region 1 and Region 2 Arabians meet at LAEC for winter tune-up

- February 1st, 2018

1802A CoverBURBANK — It’s the time of year when hopes are high and anticipation for the show season rises. For many Arabian and Half-Arabian competitors, it’s also the doorstep to the venerable Scottdale Arabian Show,so any schooling in a live arena is golden.

The Southern California Half-Arabian Association and the Arabian Horse Association of the San Fernando Valley conducted a golden opportunity Jan. 19-21 for both clubs’ members to meet whatever January objectives they have. The dual-qualifying show for Region 1 and Region 2 attracted a variety of barns from throughout the state, including several keen on this month’s 63rd Annual Scottsdale showdown Feb. 15-25. The Los Angeles Equestrian Center was buzzing with classes that included sport hroses, dressage, youth, amateur, trail, western dressage, and ranch horse pleasure. Special awards were issued for High Point Dressage Horse and High Score SPort Horse,and in addition to the previously mentioned regions, the event was a qualifying show for Pacific Slopes and the U.S.,Canadian and Sport Horse Nationals with AHA, USEF and USDF approvals.

MORE ONLINE: Http://bit.ly/1802_Arabians

Reining reiners

The region's best square off at LAEC in season-ending CRHA Challenge Show

From Horsetrader staff reports - January 1st, 2018

1801A CoverBURBANK — The California Reining Horse Associations capped off its 2017 year with good competition and good times, as competitors brought the Los Angeles Equestrian Center to life for its year-end Challenge show and the National Reining Horse Association Affiliate Qualifier.

One of the association’s great fall traditions is the CRHA Reiner of the Year, and the 2017 winner, Micki Quinn, had quite a show. Riding her Jacs Electric Velvet, Quinn brought home hardware after winning the Non Pro, Limited Non Pro, Maturity classes, and she also got to take home the Becca Goss Memorial Foundation trophy, Gatolotto Memorial buckle, Topsail Cody Memorial trophy — and a hrose trailer from All American Trailer. That is your 2017 CRHA Reiner of the Year!

A new CRHA award, the Rick Flathers Sportsmanship Award, was presented this year to trainer Penni Gerardi of Agoura Hills. The award honors a person who has distinguished herself or himself by demonstrating acts of sportsmanship and ethical behavior. Donated by his friends and family, the award memorializes a favorite colleague who passed March 7, 2016, on the trail behind his home in Orange Park Acres following an accident on horseback. The award was presented by Nancy Flathers, whom Rick met in 1972 at the El Toro Stables in Orange County and later married. The couple were supportive, positive, and generous members of the CRHA, and along with his wife, Rick was an early club member and an enthusiastic presence at the CRHA shows. Rick was always encouraging not only to his wife, who was an avid competitor and successful Non Pro, but to his barnmates, fellow showmen and peers, setting an example of sportsmanship and goodwill that was infectious. A member of the CRHA since its inception, Rick was not only a financial supporter, but was also happy to give his time to the CRHA Board of Directors for several years, adding value not only as a competitor, but as a businessman, helping to shape what would ultimately become the flourishing association that CRHA is today.

A Year to Remember

Saluting a year's worth of highlights and heroes

- December 1st, 2017

1712A CoverJANUARY

The cow horse world lost a legend in late 2016 when Benny Guitron passed away, and on Jan. 29 it came together for a heartfelt celebration of life for the Merced-based trainer. More than 400 friends and family attended the memorial hosted by Loren Booth in Minkler. Benny, a National Reined Cow Horse Hall of Famer and the 1976 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Champion, had died the previous month from complications in his battle against cancer.

Great news came out of the Los Angeles Equestrian Center on Jan. 26 when it announced that the California Department of Food and Agriculture released the LAEC from all quarantine, ending an episode of horse health concern that had begun two months earlier with confirmed cases of the EHV-1 virus. Dr. Katie Flynn, California’s State Regulatory Veterinarian, applauded LAEC’s management, staff, horse owners and trainers for their diligence and teamwork in the situation. With 725 horses on the property, a large show facility and public trails, the challenge was large and immediate.
“Their responsiveness to regulatory recommendations truly demonstrated that they had horse health and the best interest of the horse as their priorities,” said Dr. Flynn.

Larry Langer, a part of the horse industry for 66 years — from starting lessons as a child to his induction into the Show Jumping Hall of Fame — was honored in January for his devotion to equestrian sport with the Lifetime Achievement Award.
“It was both a surprise and a great honor to be chosen for this award, and I am extremely grateful to have been selected,” said Larry. “I am very proud to figuratively stand next to the likes of Bill Steinkraus, Frank Chapot, George Morris, Jimmy Woford, and Bert De Nemethy. It truly represents the crowning achievement of my lifetime in a sport that I love dearly, and it pays tribute to the horse, who plays the essential role in it.”

Morgans come home World Champions

From releases and special reports - November 1st, 2017
Eric Antman and Merriehill’s After Hours, owned by Theodore and Elaine Olsen, proved again this year to be at the top of the Morgan breed with multiple titles.

Eric Antman and Merriehill’s After Hours, owned by Theodore and Elaine Olsen, proved again this year to be at the top of the Morgan breed with multiple titles.

Howard Schatzberg photo

OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. — The best of the best in the Morgan breed was celebrated at the 2017 Grand National & World Championship Morgan Horse Show, held Oct. 7-14. Since 1973, this show has represented the pinnacle of achievement in the Morgan horse world, and this year more than 1,000 of the world’s finest Morgan horses from across the U.S. and Canada met to compete in over 300 classes for $400,000-plus in prize money.

Several West Coast Morgan stables were extremely successful, bringing home multiple World Grand Championships and Grand Championships.

Kate Ramsower of Alamo, won the highly competitive AMHA Youth of the Year Award after competing with other youth from all over the nation in four different areas, including written exams, oral presentation, judging contest, and horsemanship pattern. She is trained and instructed by Merin Maggi at Maggi Stables in San Martin.