man riding a horse
Angelina Shining Gun & Mirko Midili. Photo by Andrea Bonaga.

Angelina Shining Gun & Mirko Midili Best In Italian Reining Horse Association 4-Year-Old Futurity

Another exciting Italian Reining Horse Association (IRHA) National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) 4-Year-Old Futurity is in the books, with Angelina Shining Gun and Mirko Midili sweeping the top two levels in the Open.

Midili and the mare by Colonels Shining Gun took the Levels 4 and 3 Open championships at CremonaFiere. The mare out of Miss Alex Cody (by Im A Topsail Cody) is owned by Asia Vimercati.

“This is one of the best mares that I have ever ridden… not only because of how she works, but also because of her attitude in the barn,” Midili said. “I wasn’t able to show her in the 3-year-old Futurity because she arrived at Luga Quarter Horses only two months before the show and was too green. Also, she wasn’t an exceptional spinner, so I decided not to push her too hard and to bring her to the Futurity the following year. I felt that it was better to do things nice and slow and evidently it turned out to be the right choice.

He said the mare always progressed, starting from a 220.5 that earned her the NRHA European Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Championship. They marked a 223 in the IRHA 4-Year-Old Open, and Midili said he believed she was capable of even higher scores in the future.

“I also would like to underline that I particularly love Colonels Shining Gun’s offsprings, which are remarkably coming out,” Midili said.

Colonels Shining Gun, who was shown in Europe and the United States, now stands in the United States. The 2007 son of Equi-Stat Elite $11 Million Sire Colonels Smoking Gun (Gunner) out of Shining Little Peach (by Shining Spark) earned $112,284 in the reining pen, and has sired earners of $88,219, according to Equi-Stat.

The championship for Midili and Angelina Shining Gun came at the end of a big year for the trainer. During the year, he returned as head trainer of Luga Quarter Horses, which he’d previously had to leave because of a bad accident and long recovery. He also was on Team Italy at the Fédération Equestre Internationale (FEI) World Equestrian Games in Tryon, North Carolina. Most importantly, his daughter, Beatrice, was born in 2018.

“Beatrice has brought me a lot of serenity. She gave a meaning to my life and everything today seems more ‘light and simple,’ I face everything with less stress,” he said. “Previously I put too much weight on work and, as we say ‘he who wants it all may loose it all.’ Paradoxically everything also works out better in the arena since I’ve sorted out my priorities.”

The 4-year-old Futurity Level 4 Open Reserve Championship went to Italian trainer Gennaro Lendi and Frozen N Rooster, who marked a 221. He rode 2014 stallion (Rooster Nic x Sailor N Glo x Frozen Sailor) for owner/breeder Alberto Amici, of Rome, Italy.

The Level 3 Open Reserve Championship went to Massimiliano Ruggeri, who rode Federico Cattin’s Anty Snappy Miki (ARC Antares Surprise x Oak Snappy Miki x ARC Oak Enterprize) to a 220.5.

Level 2 Open

Winning the Level 2 Open, in a field of 23 entries, was talented 38-year-old trainer Moreno Sacchi, who guided Spatspook And Sailor to a 217.5. He and the gelding (Spat Split And White x Sail Nic Spook x Frozen Sailor) entered the finals after a good go-round, and they finished their show with a solid and stylish run.

The horse, who was given to Sacchi after the NRHA European Futurity, had previously been trained and showed by Max Ruggeri. Owner Matteo David had fun showing Spatspook And Sailor at a few regional shows and, although he had planned to sell him to dedicate himself to other foals, he and Sacchi decided to show at the Futurity to a fantastic unexpected success!

 “A very big surprise,” said Sacchi.  “He has always had very good maneuvers, but most of all he is a horse that thinks a lot — he is very smart.”

The trainer said the horse behaved well in the go-round and the final, just needing a little work to keep him focused on the job at hand.

“Other than that he has always been very nice in the way he moves, elegant especially in the canter. He has so much style and flowing movements, and most importantly he has a lot of talent,” he said. “For this Futurity I tried to present him at his best, keeping in mind my goal of showing the judges the best control possible, and he stayed with me the entire run. It is a target that I’m trying to pursue with all of my horses. He is a great open horse, but is also excellent for non-pros.”

He thanked all of his team at Le Colombare, his friend Maura who warmed up the horse before the final, and his wife Chiara, his number one supporter.

“My ‘guru’ is my wife,” he said. “She takes care of all of the management and without her we wouldn’t have achieved such an exceptional result!”

Level 1 Open

German-based Polish rider Patryk Peszke earned the Level 1 Open Championship and Level 2 Open Reserve Championship with Bernice Engle’s Gumpatrashya, a mare by Equi-Stat Elite $2 Million Sire Gunnatrashya. The daughter of Bubblicious Gump BB (by Little Gump), who was bred in Germany by Rüdiger Diedenhofen, has earned more than $10,000 in NRHA competition.

Gumpatrashya was purchased by her owner when she was in training with Cira Baeck, head trainer for CS Ranch Switzerland. With the Belgian trainer in the saddle, she claimed the reserve championship in the 4-year-old Belgian Open Futurity and was a finalist in the NRHA Germany Breeders Open Bit Futurity and in the ARHA Open Futurity. Last October Engel brought her home to Engels Performance Horses in Freystadt, Germany.

“This is a really special mare,” said Peszke. “She was very good for me in the go-round and was even better here for me tonight. All her manoeuvers are amazing and, at the same time, she is really quiet and easy to train and show. I am thrilled that Bernice [Engle] purchased her for me to show.

“We’ve only been involved in the reining world for the past three years and we immediately hired Patryk because we truly believe he is talented,” said Engel. “We’ve had this mare since October and decided to buy her not only because she’s very talented, but because we we knew she would fit Patryk and he proved it here!”

Peszke, 25, worked for German professional Volker Schmitt until three years ago when Engel hired him. His major results include the 2017 NRHA Germany Breeders Derby, the Bavarian Maturity Co-championship and seventh place in the 2018 German Breeders Level 1 Bit Futurity.

The Level 1 Open Reserve Championship went to Claudio Risso’s Rs Apple Lena (Spat Olena x Rs Linkwood x Jac McJac Flash) and Mattia Nadalini, with a score of 215.

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