October 1, 2013
By Christine HamiltonThe American Quarter Horse Journal
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AQHA Professional Horseman Holly Hover gives a Ride the Pattern clinic at the 2013 SmartPak West Novice Championship Show in Las Vegas.
‘Take two’ for the SmartPak West Novice Championship at the South Point Arena and Equestrian Center feels like a family reunion. The AQHA booth is up and running with the new jackets ready to size and order, and the show office is in full force with Show Manager Heidi Lane of Pueblo, Colorado, and her crew – Vanessa and Melanie – ready to help.
There are a lot of familiar faces. Lynda Pruett of Keenesburg, Colorado, is back; she showed at the SmartPak West last year and “had to come back,” she’d had so much fun. She spent part of the day getting Conquistador Gold, aka “Floyd,” accustomed to the sights and sounds in the covered warmup pen outside the South Point Arena. The recent floods in Colorado didn’t affect her home, but cut her off from Floyd stabled up in Windsor, Colorado, and put a wrinkle in her prep for the show. But she made it to compete in reining and horsemanship.
Reiner Mark Mitchell and his wife, hunter Sandy Ivelich, of Reno, Nevada, are both back, too. Mark will “groom” for Sandy while she shows earlier in the week, and then their roles will switch when Mark’s classes come up. The Journal shared their AQHA and reining and hunt seat showing lifestyle at the 2012 show.
To kick the show off, there were three Ride the Pattern clinics on October 1 – AQHA Professional Horseman and judge Holly Hover analyzed the showmanship pattern and AQHA Professional Horseman and judge Paula Pray of Louisburg, Kansas, went through the hunt seat equitation and equitation over fences patterns.
Here’s a little of the sage advice they shared:
AQHA Professional Horseman Holly Hover, Cave Creek, Arizona
AQHA Professional Horseman Paula Pray, Louisburg, Kansas
More Ride the Rail/Ride the Pattern clinics with AQHA Professional Horsemen are coming up – October 3 is trail with Karen Graham of Cave Creek, Arizona; and October 4 is horsemanship with Jim and Deanna Searles of Cave Creek, Arizona.
What’s your story? Got a photo from the show to share? Send it along to Journal Editor Christine Hamilton in Las Vegas – firstname.lastname@example.org.