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‘Best in the West’

WCRHA wraps up year with heated battles

Special to the Horsetrader - December 6th, 2012 - Show & Event News

John O’Hara photo

Warwick Schiller takes Victoria Devine's Horse, Plenty of Guns, to the Open Derby Crown at the WCRHA Best of the West year-end show.

RANCHO MURIETA — With stunning weather, an increase in entries, and even more social events than in years past, the Best in the West Year-end Show was bigger and better than ever. Following months of organizing, preparing and planning, in what seemed like five brief days, the Northwest Affiliate Finals and Best in the West Year End Show and Slide for the Cure came to an end. With each passing year, this show continues to draw not only more local people to the West Coast club, but more and more out-of-towners as well, continually increasing the stall count, entries, and participation.

With this, the West Coast’s 30th year as a club, they were proud to offer a huge cross-section of opportunity for each showman regardless of experience level or goal set. Whether it was their 7UP Open Maturity, Derby, or Futurity, they had an aged event for any age horse. If Aged Events weren’t on your radar, no problem….this show offered not only a full slate of the traditional NRHA classes, but all of the North American Affiliate Qualifying classes as well. If you were new to reining and weren’t quite ready to take on the challenge of qualifying for Oklahoma, the WCRHA made available the West Coast Green as Grass, Green Reiner, and the NRHA Entry Level and Green Reiner classes as well. For their “Platinum” riders, they have now incorporated The Masters Reining which is tailored for our riders ages 65+. Finally, in conjunction with their NRHA and West Coast weekend classes, they offered their Slide for the Cure classes which provided great awards and ultimately donated all proceeds to Cancer Research.

John O’Hara photo

Kelsey Njus and her Doctor Dually pep win the NRHA Affiliate Non Pro title.

Without the social aspect, which allows competitors to come together and enjoy one another outside of the arena, the Best in the West show would not be half the show it was. Wednesday night saw the Slider Performance Horses Welcome Party and Mexican Fiesta which provided tacos and beverages for every participant and their families. A big thank you to Adequan, Pira’s Cows and Horses, Purina, and Yancey Performance Horses for hosting the two draw parties, and Kathleen Cook who donated her time and all of the food required to provide a Free Exhibitors Breakfast on Sunday morning! Also, a HUGE Thank You to Equitex of Petaluma, who generously created and donated two customized West Coast Reining Horse Association Tents and tables, under which we held their Fiesta, their breakfast, and their draw parties!! Finally, there was the West Coast Tri Tip dinner on Saturday night which made available fantastic food while watching the Non Pro Derby and Open Futurity.

When it was all said and done, West Coast gave away seven Bob’s Saddles, including one in their Unrestricted Youth Class which was bought and paid for by yearlong fundraisers coordinated by the WC Youth Kids, over 70 Champion and Reserve Champion Skyline Buckles, 20 Farnam Gift Buckets to every Green as Grass that entered the arena, and a host of other awards down to fifth place in every class. Finally, one of the biggest highlights of the week came Saturday afternoon when the stands were packed with spectators who came out to support the FORTY-ONE YOUTH ENTRIES!! What an incredible youth turn out! With a saddle up for grabs and the NRHA Team Tournament Medals and scholarships at stake, it was a real thrill to see such a high level of participation by our future reiners!

John O’Hara photo

Ken Hamilton and his Chicadero slide into the NRHA Affiliate Intermedia Non Pro championship.

As the whole party came to close, West Coast President David Hanson wanted to remind everyone that in the end, it’s about more than the ribbons, scores, and placings. Above and beyond the scores and the awards, the “almosts” and the “if I could haves”, remember that none of it would matter one iota if we weren’t all in it together. Without the drinks around the tack room, the laughs at the back gate, or the friendships that we foster while we are there, we simply wouldn’t do this. Without our friends, with whom we rejoice or commiserate, we would find another way to spend our time and money. So, no matter what you scored or where you placed, put it all in perspective and remember that the camaraderie and the support of horse friends and family is the most important part of any horse show weekend!

MORE ONLINE: http://bit.ly/212A_WCRHA

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