With a rich tradition of athletic horses, talented riders and successful owners, the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) celebrates each opportunity to highlight the hard work and accomplishments of its members. After a successful trip to the National Reining Breeders Classic (NRBC) in Katy, Texas, Dr. Jim Morgan, DVM, crossed a monumental milestone and unofficially became an NRHA Million Dollar Rider.
Morgan earned his first official paycheck at the 1974 NRHA Futurity for an amount of $114.60. Since then, he rode on to win the NRHA Futurity Level 4 Non-Pro in 1984-86 and has eight reserve championships within the same division. He furthered his NRHA lifetime earnings through finals appearances at many other shows such as the All American Quarter Horse Congress, NRHA Derby and NRBC.
Adding to this impressive resume, Morgan is an NRHA Lifetime Member, Hall of Fame Member, past-member of the NRHA Board of Directors and an NRHA Judge. He has participated in every industry event imaginable, all while continuing his work as a veterinarian.
During the NRBC, Morgan rode and qualified two horses to the Classic Non-Pro finals that helped him cross this historic milestone. Shiney Workboots (Smart And Shiney x Reminic At Work x Reminic N Dunit) earned a third place finish in the Prime Time division and tied for fourth in the Level 4 with a score of 219. Atop Reiningwiththestars (Spooks Gotta Whiz x Wimpys Memorabilia x Wimpys Little Step), Morgan placed in the top 20 in the Prime Time and top 30 in the Level 4.
At the age of 72, Morgan is the oldest person to ever reach the NRHA Million Dollar Rider mark, and is only the third non-pro rider to reach this milestone.
“All this time, I’ve been planning on this run here,” said Morgan when describing how it felt to achieve this long awaited goal. The years of planning and preparation came down to one run, and it worked out perfectly – together he and Shiney Workboots earned enough money to deem Morgan an NRHA Million Dollar Rider.