The AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals have been rescheduled for later in the year. The event for horses bred by an AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder includes classes such as working ranch horse and team roping. • QHN File Photo.

The 2020 AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals Are Back

The 2020 American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA) Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals are once again on the show schedule. This time, they have a new date and location.

The AQHA announced its Executive Committee has approved hosting the show, which had been canceled, in conjunction with the 2020 AQHA World Championship Show. The AQHA World Show is slated for Nov. 5-21 at the OKC Fairgrounds in Oklahoma City, pending local, state and federal mandates.

Earlier this year, the AQHA Executive Committee canceled the AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals as well as the AQHA Versatility Ranch Horse World Championships, AQHA Cattle Level 1 Championships, and National Ranch and Stock Horse Alliance National Championship Show to protect the safety of exhibitors, trainers, spectators and staff during the worldwide coronavirus pandemic. 

“AQHA RHC Finals qualifiers who were impacted by the cancellation of the 2020 AQHA VRH World requested that the AQHA Ranching and Show departments evaluate if the finals could be rescheduled for this year,” AQHA Senior Director of Member Programs Karen McCuistion said in a statement. “After discussions with qualifiers, representatives from the AQHA Ranching Committee, NRSHA alliance partners and OKC Fairgrounds, AQHA staff recommended and the AQHA Executive Committee approved to host the 2020 AQHA RHC Finals at the 2020 AQHA World Show.”

New Plan

The RHC Finals classes are now tentatively scheduled for the beginning of the AQHA World Show. The classes will correspond with the 4st Triangle Fall Sale, which is Nov. 6- 7, at the AQHA World Show.   

The 2020 RHC Finals tentative schedule will be released at a later date with the 2020 AQHA World Show schedule at www.aqha.com/worldshow. Entry information will be available in September. The qualifying period for the 2020 AQHA RHC Finals was January 1 – December 31, 2019.

The AQHA says several factors went into the decision to host the show later this year: Most RHC Finals classes are age-specific and by not hosting the event, American Quarter Horses would miss this year of competition and the opportunity to compete for this year’s prize money.

Ranching Heritage Challenge Show Details

The total purse of the 2020 RHC Finals is approximately $50,000. In addition, American Quarter Horses qualified for the 2020 RHC Finals have been paid up to be fully enrolled in the challenge program. Hosting the show during the 2020 AQHA World Show will also allow RHC classes to be live-streamed for the first time and will give added exposure to the Ranching Heritage Challenge program and Ranching Heritage Breeders.

“Since the inception of the RHC Finals, AQHA has been searching for a permanent home for this event, and the AQHA World Show might be the perfect fit,” McCuistion said. “After the AQHA World Show, AQHA staff will evaluate whether the RHC Finals should continue to be held in conjunction with the AQHA World Show in the future.”