The National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) officially released the long-awaited draws for the 2018 NRHA Futurity. Competitors and spectators will travel from all over to convene in Oklahoma City Nov. 22-Dec. 1 for a front-row seat as history unfolds in the Jim Norick Arena.
Horsemen and horsewomen will have their eyes trained on the horses that will influence the industry for years to come. The world is anxiously awaiting the equine prospects, and the staff at Quarter Horse News has noted the draw position of a few early futurity winners you won’t want to miss.
Set to compete in the Open division, Southwest Reining Horse Association Futurity Levels 4 and 3 Open Champion Stars and Sparks, an A Sparkling Vintage mare who is out of Belle Starr Dun It (by Hollywood Dun It), will show with Fernando Salgado aboard. The mare, who was bred by Turnabout Farm and is owned by Oldenburg Farm, will try for a shot at the Futurity finals from the 15th draw.
A Vintage Smoke, another offspring by A Sparkling Vintage, dominated the High Roller Reining Classic Futurity Level 4 Open with Jason Vanlandingham earlier this year. The stallion, who is out of Lady Smoke Peppy (by Mister Dual Pep), was bred by Karl and Debbie Hapcic, of Gallatin Gateway, Montana, and is owned by Diane Mesmer, of Highlands Ranch, Colorado. He and Vanlandingham will compete from the 62nd draw.
The Walla Walla Whiz mare Americas Supermodel, who is out of 2012 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Champion Americansnextgunmodel (by Colonels Smoking Gun [Gunner]), secured the 228th draw amidst a field of 371 teams with Equi-Stat Elite $1 Million Rider Casey Deary. The Arceses Quarter Horses USA-bred horse is owned by Marie and Lyle Whitmarsh, of Cochrane, Alberta, Canada, and will arrive in Oklahoma City with the All American Quarter Horse Congress Futurity Level 4 Open title to her name.
Oh Starry Nite, a Gunners Special Nite mare out of Chic Olena Starbuck (by Smart Starbuck), was piloted by Duane Latimer to the Tulsa Reining Classic Futurity Level 4 Open title earlier this year. The 3-year-old, who was bred by Turnabout Farm and is owned by XCS Ranch LLC, of Gordonville, Texas, is slated to compete from the 256th draw.
In the Non-Pro division, Pistols Smart and Jose Vazquez will enter the arena from the 164th draw out of 196 horse-and-rider teams. The homebred stallion, who is by Smart Like Juice and out of the Playgun mare Velvet Pistol, made a name for himself when he was crowned the Futurity Level 4 Non-Pro Champion at the Reining By The Bay.
The Gunner stallion Absolute Gunner, who is out of Taris Modern Design (by Mr Boomerjac), will be piloted by Daniele Whitney from the 175th draw of the competition. Bred by Turnabout Farm Inc. and owned by Dan Whitney, of Northfield, Massachusetts, the stallion and Daniele will walk into the pen with top honors under their belts from the Central New York Reining Horse Association Futurity and the Northeast Breeders Trust, where they claimed the Levels 4, 3, 2 and 1 Non-Pro championships.
The NRHA Futurity is the first opportunity for young sires full of potential to make a name for themselves. This year’s freshman sires are jam-packed with earnings and accolades of their own, holding a wealth of promise for their progenies’ prospects in the arena.
- NRHA Triple Crown winner Not Ruf At All, a 2010 stallion by A Sparkling Vintage and out of the Lil Ruf Peppy mare All Ruffed Up, won $456,530 in the show ring himself.
- Gunners Tinseltown, a 2009 Gunner stallion who is out of Miss Tinseltown (by Great Red Pine), earned $316,233 including the NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Championship.
- The 2009 Jacs Electric Spark stallion REF Black Mamba, who is out of the Doc O’Lena mare Metermaid To Order, won $127,871, including a fourth place finish in the 2012 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open.
- National Reining Breeders Classic (NRBC) Level 4 Open Champion SG Frozen Enterprise, who is by Frozen Sailor and out of RS Rose SJ (by SJ Enterprise), has won $272,333 throughout his show career.
- Tinseltown Fly Guy, a 2010 Hollywoodstinseltown stallion who is out of Fly Flashy Jac (by Boggies Flashy Jac), won $264,139, including the 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Championship.
- The 2009 stallion Wimpys Littlecolonel spun and slid his way to $144,321 in earnings. The stallion, who is by Wimpys Little Step and out of the Smart Chic Olena mare One Right Chic, was named the 2013 NRBC Level 4 Open Reserve Champion.