Year-end Awards Announced AQHA-Corporate Partners Bring New Opportunities For Year-End Winners

Amarillo, Texas -  American Quarter Horse Association Members who work year-around to earn top awards have some new opportunities for valuable prizes in 2003. Thanks to the generosity of AQHA's Corporate Partners, the 2003 AQHA year-end high-point awards will be valuable to those who obtain them.

All of the AQHA year-end high-point awards will be awarded at the AQHA Annual Convention scheduled for March 2003 in Anaheim, California.

All-Around Awards

American Quarter Horse Association Corporate Partner Sooner Trailer Manufacturing announced official sponsorship of the Year-End All-Around Awards earlier this year. The Year-End All-Around High Point Horse; Open Junior, Senior and Amateur Exhibitor; and the World Champion Racing American Quarter Horse will receive a three-horse gooseneck trailer. A two-horse bumper pull horse trailer will be awarded to the Reserve Year-End High-Point All Around Amateur and to the owner of the Open Leading Contender.

An AQHA partner since 1988, Sooner has produced the official trailer of AQHA. Each year, the Duncan, Oklahoma company also presents a two-horse bumper pull horse trailers to the MBNA America® Racing Challenge Leading Owner. Sooner Trailer also presents the AQHA World Championship Show All-Around and Superhorse winners with a three-horse gooseneck trailer.

All-Around Youth Awards

Markel Insurance-AQHA Corporate Partner since 1999-will award the Year-End All-Around Youth with a $10,000 scholarship. The first Markel Insurance All-Around Youth will be presented in 2003. Markel will also present a $5,000 scholarship to the Reserve All-Around Youth.

The Markel Insurance All-Around Youth Award is one of the most respected honors an AQHYA Member could receive. This award is given to the youth exhibitor who earns the most points during that year's competition.

Since its partnership began in 1999, Markel Insurance Company provides equine insurance packages to all AQHA Members. The Glen Allen, Virginia, company sponsors the American Quarter Horse Association World Championship Show and contributes to the American Quarter Horse Youth Association scholarship fund.

Year-End High-Point Awards

Montana Silversmiths, an AQHA Corporate Partner since 1992, will award specially designed, handmade silver and gold belt buckles to all of the 2003 high-point winners. The winner of each high-point award will be determined per rule 431 in the AQHA Official Handbook.

As the "official silversmiths of AQHA," Montana Silversmiths also markets a special collection of AQHA buckles, jewelry and gifts with a portion of sales returned for Association projects.

Justin Rookie of the Year Awards

The Justin Rookie of the Year program attracts hundreds of new AQHA competitors annually, and presents awards on national, state and provincial levels. Three amateur and three youth are named Justin Rookie of the Year in their respective age division. Amateur competitors will be awarded a pair of Lizard Boots, a sterling silver and gold belt buckle and $2,000 cash. Youth competitors will receive a pair of Lizard Boots and a scholarship ($2,000 for competitors in the 11 and under and 12-14 age divisions; $3,000 for youth competitors age 15-18).

Justin also recognizes a youth and amateur competitor at the Affiliate level with the Affiliate Rookie of the Year Program, honoring a youth and amateur competitor in each state and Canadian Province. Affiliate Rookies of the Year are awarded a pair of Justin Roper/Lacer Boots and a sterling silver and gold belt buckle.

Professional Horseman and Horsewoman of the Year

The AQHA Professional's Choice Professional Horseman and Horsewoman of the Year awards annually recognize two members of AQHA's Professional Horsemen's Association. Selected by a panel of their peers, members of the Association of Professional Horsemen nominate and vote on professionals who have worked toward the future of our industry by being positive and innovative in business endeavors.

The Professional Horseman and Horsewoman of the Year are sponsored by Professional's Choice Sports Medicine Products, an AQHA corporate partner since 1996.

For more information on any of AQHA's Year-End All-Around Awards, contact AQHA at (806) 376-4811 or log on to www.aqha.com.




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