Oklahoma City, Oklahoma - Two stars emerged in the ranks of NRHA Youth competition in 2001 and a pair of talented individuals - Jessicah Keller and Jose Seutter, set the youth title races on fire.
Jessicah Keller won the Youth 14-18 World Championship on Its Time To Smoke and she also rode Pica Go to the 14-18 Reserve title. That made history, as never before have both the world and reserve championships gone to the same exhibitor in the 14-18 Youth division.
But that's just all in a day's work for the 17-year-old from Fayetteville, Tennessee, who has also earned 9 AQHA high Point titles and two AQHA Youth Supreme Championships.
Its Time To Smoke is a 7-year-old gelding by Bueno Swiss Reed out of Docwood Poco Smoke that Nelle Murphy had shown to a placing in the 1997 NRHA Non Pro Futurity and the AQHA World Show finals.
Pica Go and Keller had already won a year-end title before 2001 - the 2000 AQHYA Reining High Point Award and the 16-year-old gelding by Kims Pica Pride out of Okie Go has been a consistent campaigner for a variety of riders since 1989.
Jose Seutter was as outstanding as Keller in 2001. The Anthony, Florida youth won the 13 & Under World Championship on Be Aech Babe and claimed the Reserve 13 & Under title on Lil Nic. He also won the 2001 NRHA Limited Non Pro Reserve World Championship on Lil Nic and ended the year with four horses on the NRHA Top Ten list.
Before the year even started, Jose had decided which horse he wanted to haul for a title. His choice was Be Aech Babe, a broodmare that his parents had shown successfully over the years. At the time, she was in the pasture with a foal.
The foal was weaned and the 11-year-old mare by Be Aech Enterprise out of Aces Star Slider moved into the barn and quickly into the NRHA standings.
Jose's back-up horse for the year was a palomino gelding named Lil Nic. It was on the 16-year-old son of Winnernic out of Freckles Holly Too, that Jose posted his biggest win of the year - the 13 & Under class at the NRHA Futurity.
Both Seutter and Keller will receive World Championship buckles in Oklahoma City during the NRHA Derby. The National Reining Horse Association World Champions will be recognized at the annual Awards Banquet, held May 16 at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum.
The National Reining Horse Association is the world-wide governing body of reining, responsible for promoting the sport, working to insure the highest standards of competition and educating its members and the public about reining. For information on the National Reining Horse Association, call 405-946-7400 or visit the NRHA Official Web Site at www.nrha.com.