Oklahoma City, Okla. - The National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) is proud to announce the newest champions crowned at this year’s North American Affiliate Championships. It was a three-peat for Holly Valerio in Oklahoma City as she went on to claim the Adequan NAAC Silver Spurs Equine Rookie of the Year and the Adequan NAAC Rookie Level 2 Championships. “It’s amazing! Glory to God, He helped me through the whole time! My horse once again proved that he’s so consistent and so willing!” said Holly.
Consistent and willing is truly what the 6-year-old gelding by Soule Jule Star and out of Prittie Gallitia (by Gallo Del Cielo) proved to be. In the second day of competition, at the Adequan North American Affiliate Championships, the pair scored a 212 and tied for the co-championship in the Limited Non Pro. The duo went on to win the Novice Horse Non Pro Level 2 Championship with a 213.5 and finally took both titles on Monday as the Championships went into the fifth day of competition. This time with a 215!
Holly qualified at the Northwest Affiliate Regional Championship and rode for the Great Western Reining Horse Association. Along with the NAAC Silver Spurs Rookie of the Year title, she took home a Bob’s Custom Saddle sponsored by Kaiser Equine Transportation, a Montana Silversmiths Custom Trophy Buckle, a Classic Equine product, a Platinum Performance product, a pair of Rios of Mercedes Boots, an Adequan product, a $250 SmartPak Gift Card, an embroidered halter provided by Markel, a blanket from Avila Pro Shop and Bluebonnet Feed supply.
Kathy Loudamy and Miss Winnie Tag, aka Ups, earned the reserve championship in both the Rookie of the Year and in the Rookie Level 2 after posting a 211. The pretty ten-year-old sorrel mare is by NRHA Two Million Dollar Sire, Whiz N Tag Chex, and is out of MS Lindy Roanstad (by Strato Chief).
“My mare is truly my other half,” said an emotional and happy Kathy following the awards presentation. “I got ‘Ups’ in April this year and I qualified her in three shows. I’ve been riding reiners for the past two years but I finally understood what this discipline is all about after I got her. She’s there for me all the time and I never thought that we would achieve this result!” Though Kathy rides with NRHA Professional Jordan Donnelly, ‘Ups’ lives at Kathy’s home in Brownsboro, TX. “I live about three hours away from my trainer and every time I need a lesson I haul up there and then bring her back home with me.”
Kathy qualified at the South Central Affiliate Regional Championship and rode for the Southwest Reining Horse Association.
For the reserve championship Kathy was awarded a Bob’s Custom Saddle sponsored by Kaiser Equine Transportation, a Montana Silversmiths Custom Trophy Buckle sponsored by CompetitorCentral.com, a Classic Equine product, an Adequan product, a $150 SmartPak Gift Card, an embroidered halter provided by Markel, a blanket from Avila Pro Shop and Bluebonnet Feed supply. Third place honors in both the Championships went to Annabeth Payne who, riding her 5-year-old gelding Chexamillion (Nu Chex To Cash x Snip O Gun x One Gun), closed her run with a 210. The duo was awarded a Classic Equine product, an Adequan product, a $100 SmartPak Gift Card and Bluebonnet Feed supply.
Annabeth qualified at the South Central Affiliate Regional Championship and rode for the Heart of Texas Reining Horse Association
The NAAC Rookie of the Year is sponsored by Silver Spurs Equine Equine, LLC, of Scottsdale, AZ, owned by Michelle and Michael Miola. “We’ve been sponsoring for years and the reason is because we want to promote the sport and who better to promote than our non pros, the backbone of the NRHA? We want to support and help them and do whatever we can for them,” said Michael Miola. “Our non pro riders bring so much excitement to the sport and all around them there is so much support, as can be seen here!”
For more information about the North American Affiliate Championships and the 50th Running of the NRHA Futurity to keep up with all the class results, special events and happenings throughout the week, visit nrhafuturity.com.