When Dany Tremblay marked a 224.5 on Tinker With Dreams in the $100,000 Open Shootout at last weekend’s The Run For A Million, he not only guaranteed a spot in the 2022 Million Dollar Competition but also secured his place in National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) history.
When Tremblay, of Overbrook, Oklahoma, traveled to Las Vegas for the event, he was less than $5,000 away from achieving NRHA Million Dollar Rider status. The tie for fifth place in the Shootout paid $9,991, more than enough to (unofficially) push the NRHA Professional past the career milestone.
Dany shared he was excited about the win but was adamant about crediting his brother, Fred, for his success.
“I remember when I was a kid and I had won my first $100,000, and it was just before I had to pick if I wanted to be a Non Pro or an Open rider. Fred told me, ‘Don’t worry. You got the $100,000, and the next party we are going to have will be for a million,’” Tremblay recalled. “Honestly, I never believed my brother until today. The reason I am here is because of him; he made everything happen, I was just the rider.”
He added, “We have been a team from the beginning, and are the best team. Fred has taught me so much in life as far as business and has been there and believed in me since day one. He always told people, ‘You’re going to see what my brother can do someday.’”
For Fred, seeing his younger brother reach one million in earnings was the culmination of a dream. “I have wanted this for him ever since he was a kid,” Fred shared following the Shootout.
Dany and Fred’s father, Christian Tremblay, won the 1981 NRHA Futurity Non Pro Championship, so while he grew up riding different types of horses and disciplines, reining was always special.
The Tremblays relocated from Canada to the United States in 2014. Expanding upon their Canadian experience, Tremblay Performance Horses has become a premier reining horse training, coaching, and marketing programs in the industry.
“It was a little hard living in Canada because I always wanted to compete in the United States, so I traveled a lot,” Dany explained. “I used to come a month before the NRHA Futurity to learn more and work with great trainers. Then it was two months earlier, and soon I was splitting my time between the two countries almost equally.”
Dany has trained and worked with some of the industry’s best horsemen, including Mike Flarida, NRHA Million Dollar Rider Dell Hendricks and Two Million Dollar Rider Duane Latimer.
When asked what he credits most for his success, his answer was spending time in the show ring.
“I showed on as many horses as I could. I learned a lot from the good horses, but I think I learned even more from the bad and average ones,” he said. “Showing is probably the key to success. A lot of people can ride good horses but getting them shown is another story. Going into the show pen was where I learned the most. I can tell you that, in reining, I have figured out that you never lose: either you win, or you learn.”
Tremblay’s 10 most lucrative wins include:
- 2021 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Co-Champion – Tinker With Dreams – $62,500
- 2017 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 4 Open Reserve Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $41,000
- 2015 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 8th – Spooksgottachicolena – $32,110
- 2019 TRFAM Open Shootout Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $26,337
- 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 11th – The Wizster – $22,800
- 2013 NRHA Futurity Level 3 Open Reserve Champion – The Wizster – $21,899
- 2019 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 3 Open Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $21,370
- 2017 National Reining Breeders Classic Level 3 Open Champion – PS Mega Shine Chic – $20,589
- 2018 NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open 12th – Thug Life – $20,392
- 2017 NRHA Derby Level 3 Open Champion – Magnums Guns R Reddy – $18,586