ElectricStarlight SFlarida SBorgia

Steven Borgia Sweeps SmartPak Derby Non-Pro Aboard Electric Starlight

ElectricStarlight SFlarida SBorgiaSteven Borgia (right) with Electric Starlight and Shawn FlaridaWhen Steven Borgia rode into the arena as the sixth draw in the Ariat Tulsa Reining Classic SmartPak Derby Non-Pro, someone asked, “Who’s that?” It’s for sure that everyone knows him now, as his 219.5 score on Electric Starlight (Jacs Electric Spark X Carino Del Cielo) held up through all 70 runs and he swept the Non-Pro Levels 4, 3, and 2 and claimed the Novice Non-Pro, as well. .

Borgia bought the good gelding from Mike Davis after the National Reining Breeders Classic this year and this is the third time he has shown him. At the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Derby, he placed 3rd in the Level 1 Non-Pro and has spent the past few months getting with him. 

He’s had some quality help with that as he’s been riding with $3 Million NRHA Professional Shawn Flarida for the past year. “I really appreciate Shawn and all the boys from the farm for all the help they’ve given me,” noted Steven. 

Steven has been riding reiners since 2008 after he saw the World Equestrian Games featured on television. Before that he had trail ridden but he was hooked as soon as he watch the reining.

Currently finishing his Masters Degree in Organizational Management, Steven, of LeClaire, Iowa, plans to give Electric Starlight the rest of the year off. “The NRBC will be our next show.” 

He collected $5,019 for the Level 4 win and a boatload of prizes, including a Lawson trophy, saddle sponsored by Global Reining Sport Group, Ariat Jacket, and gift certificates from Ariat Denim and Smartpak. He netted an additional $2,806 in the Level 3, $1,275 in the Level 2, and $996 in the Novice Horse.  

The Level 4 and Level 3 Reserve Championships went to Indy Roper for a score of 219 on Chicsdundreamin owned by Tim Roper of Hobart, Ind. They were worth $3,055 and $1,708, respectively. 

Winning the Level 2 Reserve title was Gloria Bradley of Mt. Sterling, Kentucky, scoring 218 on Colonel G (Smokin Bueno Dell X Lady Kali Jac) owned by Bill Bradley. Gloria also won reserve honors in the Novice Horse division.  

Flis Sassella, of Marietta, Oklahoma, rode Tickle My Whizkers, by Remin Whiz and out of Tivito Norma, to the championship in the Prime Time Non Pro. She raised the gelding, and owned both his dam and granddam. The now 6-year-old gelding that she owns with her husband, Richard, was a bit of a late bloomer. “It took a long time to get him trained, ” she said. “He wasn’t ready at 3 or 4 but now he’s got it all together and just wants no trouble. He’s a huge stopper – really easy to ride and after the slow beginning, it looks like he’ll be a long-term performer.”

She missed all the major events this year, as her daughter, Rachel was a senior in high school and the family was involved in college selection. “Every week that there was a big event we’d have a trip to check out a college so that was the priority this year instead of showing.”

The Reserve Champion in the Prime Time was Polly Hilliard of Lexington, Kentucky. Polly rode Little Man Spook, by Smart Spook, out of Miss Satin Whiz.

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