The National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) has launched the Challenger Series, a new format of weekend shows aimed at giving weekend cutters a fun and affordable entryway to the sport. Challenger Shows will complement the existing NCHA Championship Shows, with lower cost and more flexibility for show producers.
The time-tested features of the traditional Championship Shows will continue with a few new features.
Beginning with the 2017 point year, an awards and recognition program will be introduced for the new Challenger Shows, but affiliates and other show producers may begin offering Challenger Shows with no added money, even during the remainder of the 2016 point year. Added-money Challenger Shows will be allowed starting December 28, with the new point year.
“The Challenger Series is a brand new format, building on the foundation of the Grassroots Program.” said NCHA President Chuck Smith. “The Challenger Series will make it easier for show producers and affiliates to create shows tailored to their unique situations. “It also gives new people and current members who are just cutting for fun a better experience, while being rewarded for their efforts.”
Challenger standings based on points
NCHA will establish Regional Top 15 Standings for the new Challenger Shows. The Challenger Standings will be based strictly on points, rather than money earned. However, money won at Challenger Shows will count toward lifetime earnings, rider and horse eligibility and achievement awards.
Points awarded for any Challenger Show class will be based on the number of entries, with one point for every two entries, to a maximum of 10 points. No half-points will be awarded. If there is an odd number of entries, points will be rounded up.
So placings in a 20-horse class, would be awarded as follows: first = 10 pts., second = 9 pts. and down to 1 pt. for 10th place. All entries that mark a score of at least 60 will receive at least one point, which will help encourage ongoing participation. So in this example, places 11-20 would each receive one point.
In the case of ties, each entry will receive the points awarded to the highest tied placing, with the normal points going to any contestants following the tie. This is similar to the way points are currently awarded in Youth classes at Championship Shows.
Continued on page 2