American Quarter Horse AssociationMarch 20, 2013
Are you still not sure how everything works for the AQHA Novice championships? That’s OK – read through this handy FAQ!
Are you still not sure how everything works for the 2013 AQHA Novice championship shows? That’s OK! Lots of questions are
bound to come up. Below are some of the most frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions, please call AQHA Customer
Service at (806) 376-4811.
How do I qualify?
You may qualify nationally or through your state/provincial affiliate. There are two ways to nationally qualify:
1. Show at 20 shows in a Novice class; if a show does not offer the Novice class, contact the show manager or show secretary to add the class. Shows will be counted by show numbers on a one-horse, one-rider basis; for questions about how many show numbers a show will count for, competitors should ask the presiding show manager or secretary. As Novice halter classes are not commonplace, Novice-eligible halter exhibitors may compete in the corresponding youth or amateur halter class to count for their 20 shows. –or–
2. Place in the top 10 in a Novice class at an AQHA Regional Championship Show; the top-10 placing qualifies the rider on that horse only. If your Regional Championship does not offer the Novice class you are interested in, contact the show manager or show secretary to add the class. Again, since Novice halter classes are not commonly offered, a top-10 finish in the corresponding youth or amateur halter class at a Regional Championship will count for Novice-eligible halter exhibitors.
The national qualifying period is May 1, 2012, to June 30, 2013. If your regional championship is after June 30, 2013, it will
count toward qualifying for the 2014 AQHA Novice championship shows.
An exhibitor may qualify for the Novice championships through state/provincial qualifying. If your affiliate does not have a
qualifying method listed, you must nationally qualify or qualify through another affiliate. To qualify through another affiliate, you
must be a member in good standing with the other affiliate (other than the state/province you reside in) and be selected by that
affiliate as a qualifier.
How much does it cost?
The Novice championships feature a flat entry fee of $300 per horse-and-rider combination. The fee includes up to three classes, office and drug testing fees, plus one stall. Tack stalls may be purchased for $100, and you will also need to pay for shavings. Each additional class, after three, will cost an additional fee $35 per class. No classes are offered on an individual basis without the $300 flat fee being paid first.
Does the entry fee cover my stall?
The flat entry fee of $300 pays for one stall and a maximum of three classes. A tack stall may be purchased for $100.
What can I enter?
The list of classes offered at the 2013 Novice championships will be determined shortly. If you qualify for the Novice championships,
you may enter as many classes as you and your horse feel comfortable showing in, as long as you are Novice eligible in those classes.
Please see the fee structure above.
I qualified nationally in one class, and state qualified in another class.
As long as you qualify for the Novice championships, whether through national or state/provincial qualifying, you are eligible to
enter any class at the Novice championships on the horse you qualified with as long as you are still Novice eligible in that class.
If you nationally qualified, your state/provincial affiliate will not include you in their state qualifying list (because you are
already nationally qualified) so other competitors have the opportunity to qualify, as well.
Can I show in any class if I am state/provincially qualified?
Whether you state/provincially or nationally qualify, you may enter as many classes as you would like at the Novice championships, as
long as it is with the horses that you qualified on, and you are currently Novice eligible in that class.
I live in California, but my trainer is in North Carolina. What Novice championship show am I qualified for?
There will be no restriction on which Novice championship an exhibitor may attend. As an example, if you live in the west, but would
rather attend the Nutrena AQHA East Novice Championship Show, you may do so. Or, if you live in the east and would like to attend the
SmartPak AQHA West Novice Championship Show, you may do so. However, you may only compete at one Novice championship per year.
I qualified for the Novice championships and also the AQHA World Show, can I do both?
Yes, if you qualify for the Novice championships and the AQHA World Championship Show, you may compete at both.
If I won Novice amateur 2-year-old mares at the 2012 Novice Championship, can I show in Novice amateur 3-year-old mares this year?
No, a win in a halter class at the Novice championships will make you ineligible to compete in Novice halter for the three subsequent years. Visit www.aqha.com/novice to learn more about Novice eligibility.
If I'm a reserve world champion in pole bending, but I'm still a Novice amateur in pole bending, and I qualify in Novice amateur pole
bending for the Novice championships, can I show in pole bending at the AQHA Novice championship shows?
If you earn a reserve or world championship in the same year the Novice championship is held, your Novice eligibility stays intact in
that class through the end of the year (this would apply to the Ford Youth and Adequan Select world shows, which are held in
August/September, prior to the Novice championships, which are held in October). However, on January 1, you would no
longer be considered a Novice in that class (skill set).
If you won an AQHA reserve or world championship in a class in a previous year, you are not eligible for Novice in that class
(skill set) the following three years. Additionally, if you were a champion at the Novice championships, you are not Novice eligible in that class for three consecutive years.
My Regional Championship is after the qualifying cut-off, can I still go?
If your Regional Championship is after June 30, 2013, you will need to qualify by another means for this year’s Novice
If you competed at your regional championship in 2012 (and the event was held after July 1, 2012), and you placed in the top-10 in
a Novice class, you are already nationally qualified with the horse that you earned the top-10 placing. Other qualifying methods include showing at 20 AQHA shows in Novice classes (on a one-horse, one-rider basis) or
fulfilling your state/provincial affiliate’s requirements, which you can find here. If you have any questions about whether you
are qualified or not, contact AQHA Customer Service at (806) 376-4811.
Why aren’t there cattle or over fences classes?
We are working on something we hope will excite cattle event exhibitors for 2014. Stay tuned for those updates, plus updates
regarding over fences classes.
What will the schedule look like?
The 2013 class schedule will be available shortly.
Does our accomplishment go on my horse’s record?
Yes, your accomplishments at the Novice championships will go on your horse’s permanent record.
Are the clinics free?
Yes, the Ride the Pattern/Ride the Rail clinics scheduled for the Novice championship shows are free.
If I win, can I come back next year?
If you win a class at a Novice championship show, you will lose your Novice eligibility in that class for three consecutive years,
but you will be able to continue showing in Novice in that class for the remainder of 2013.
What do I get if I win?
Trophies, ribbons, medallions, and other products will be awarded. Saddles will be presented to each of the four all-around winners
(Select amateur, amateur, 13 & under and 14-18 divisions), and class winners will receive a buckle.
Can my trainer show my horse at the Novice championships?
No, the Novice championships are exclusive for Novice amateur and Novice youth competitors.
What kind of Journal coverage can I look for?
The American Quarter Horse Journal will be on-site covering the Nutrena AQHA East Novice Championship Show and the SmartPak AQHA West
Novice Championship Show. The Journal’s coverage of the event can be found at www.aqha.com/novicechampionships.
Will there be live feed?
No, there will not be a live webcast of the 2013 Novice championships.
My state/province doesn’t have a qualifying method – can I qualify through another state/province?
If your affiliate does not have a qualifying method listed, you must nationally qualify or qualify through another affiliate. If you
are a member in good standing with another affiliate (other than the state/province you reside in) and you have the affiliate’s
approval, you may qualify through another state or province.
Will there be a Novice championships youth team, similar to the youth world team?
No, competitors will not be grouped with their state, such as done at the Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show.
What if someone tries to nationally and state qualify? How will my affiliate know that they have already nationally
AQHA will send each state a list of the national qualifiers in mid-July. AQHA will send out the invitations and the entries will be done by show
secretaries for each event.
I nationally qualified in halter 2-year-old mares, but now I’ve pointed out of Novice halter. AQHA said that if you
point out during the year, you can still show in that class at the Novice championships, so can I bring another horse and show it in
No, to qualify for a Novice championship with a horse, you must be Novice eligible at the time you are qualifying. You may
still show the mare that you qualified in halter with as a Novice, but if you wish to qualify another horse for the Novice
championships (and you no longer are Novice eligible in halter), you must qualify that other horse in a class in which you are Novice
If you receive my entry on time, can I also add a class at the show?
No, you cannot add classes at the Novice championships, but you may scratch from them.
If my daughter and I qualify for the Novice championships on the same horse, can we both show the horse, and will we only pay $300
for the flat fee? If not, is the second person's entry discounted?
Unfortunately the answer is "No." The cost of $300 must be paid by each exhibitor, which covers each exhibitor's entries up
to three classes.
At the end of 2012, I noviced out of barrel racing. Will I still be eligible to compete at the Novice championships in
As long as you nationally qualified for the Novice championships from May 1 - December 31, 2012, you will receive an
invitation to compete with that horse at the 2013 Novice championships.
Will there be a payback at the Novice championships like there is at the AQHA World Championship Show?
No, prizes and recognition will be the awards for the 2013 Novice championships.
I showed at my AQHA Regional Championship Show last year and I placed in the top 10 in a Novice class, qualifying for the
Novice championships. However, I noviced out of several classes by the end of 2012 – will I still be able to show in those
classes at the 2013 Novice championships?
If you qualify, and then novice out, you will still receive an invitation to the Novice championships, and be able to
compete in the classes that you were a Novice in when you qualified with that horse. However, if you show a second horse and qualify that horse after
you have noviced out, then you would not receive an invite with the second horse.
If the horse that I qualified for the Novice championships dies after the qualifying cut-off, can I bring a different
Should a horse receiving an invitation to the 2013 Novice championships die, the exhibitor owning the horse may substitute and
participate with another horse up to one hour prior to the appropriate class in showmanship, horsemanship and hunt seat equitation;
the appropriate show office must be notified, and provided with a statement from an American Association of Equine Practitioners-
approved veterinarian verifying the qualified horse’s death.
Exhibitors who qualify in any other class may participate with another horse if the qualified horse dies before the entry deadline.
When submitting entry to the designated show secretary, a statement from an AAEP-approved veterinarian verifying the death of the
qualified horse must also be submitted.
What happens if my horse is severely injured after the end of the qualifying period for the 2013 Novice championships? Can
I substitute another horse?
For the Novice championships only, if a horse becomes severely injured or disabled, a substitute will be allowed for
the Novice championships that the injured/disabled horse qualified for. In order to replace a debilitated horse, written
statements from two AAEP-approved veterinarians stating the severity of the debilitating injury or illness, and lack of probably of
short-term recovery, must be submitted to AQHA or the show office at the event and the appropriate show office is notified at least
one hour prior to the particular class.
[Please note that due to Novice rules, the competitor does not have to own the horse that he or she shows at the Novice
How old does a youth competitor have to be to compete in halter at the Novice Championship shows?
The rule requiring youths to be 9 years old to compete in halter has been relaxed for the Novice championships.
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