Lexington, KY - The Adequan U.S. Reining Team has passed all of five of their team members in this morning's jog at the 2010 Alltech FEI World Equestrian Games (WEG). The Reining World Championships presented by John Deere will start on Saturday, September 25, at 9 a.m. with part 1 of the team competition and the first round of the Individual Qualifying Competition.
The Adequan U.S. Reining Team consists of the following reiners and their horses:
- Shawn Flarida/41/Springfield, OH/RC Fancy Step/6/Quarter Horse/Stallion/ Buffalo Ranch
- Tom McCutcheon/43/Aubrey, TX/Gunners Special Nite/6/Quarter Horse/Stallion/Turnabout Ranch
- Craig Schmersal/38/Overbrook, OK/Mister Montana Nic/12/Quarter Horse/Stallion/Mister Montana Nic Syndicate
- Tim McQuay /58/Tioga, TX/Hollywoodtinseltown/6/Quarter Horse/Stallion/David & Bonnie Silva
Matthew Noel Palmer/ 28/Elverson, PA/Whale of a Whiz/7/Quarter Horse/Gelding/Guy and Joan Palmer
The Order of Go has been drawn, and the U.S. Reiners will compete with Tim McQuay and Hollywoodstinseltownin going fourth, Craig Schmersal and Mister Montana Nic in the 17th position, Tom McCutcheon and Gunners Special Nite going 32nd, and Shawn Flarida and RC Fancy Step in the 50th spot. There are a total of 63 competitors scheduled for tomorrow's first round of Team Championship and First Individual Qualifying Competition.
The Adequan U.S. Reining Team is led by Chef d'Equipe Jeff Petska of Whitesboro, TX, who was also the team Chef at the 2002 and 2006 World Equestrian Games.
Petska was pleased with the start of WEG for the Adequan U.S. Reining Team. "We all passed, so the jog went great," he said. "John Newcomb, our vet, is amazing, and the grooms do a great job. The guys did a great job of trotting them up. They looked good out there, so they're ready to go."
The four reiners - McQuay, McCutcheon, Schmersal, and Flarida - have all won more then $1 million in lifetime earnings in NRHA competition and have all won gold medals for the United States in world championship competition.
"Experience-wise, they are all the top riders in our sport, and they have all been to a WEG and have been gold medalists. That experience is huge because when we come here, they know what to expect and how to operate within the guidelines of the FEI," Petska explained. "They're just pros; they're great horsemen and have great programs at home."
Petska said that he and the team are looking forward to competing in the United States. "It's exciting for us because reining was developed here in the U.S. and we're like the fathers of the sport," he remarked. "For us to show here and be able to represent our country on our home soil is really exciting."
Photo: Mister Montana Nic and Craig Schmersal (Shannon Brinkman for USEF)