by Samantha EckertThe American Quarter Horse Journal
AQHA Professional Horseman and Design By Leaguer are crowned the 2011 AQHA world champions in senior trail. Journal photo.
Design By Leaguer and AQHA Professional Horseman Jason Martin of Pilot Point, Texas took the title as the 2011 AQHA world champions in senior trail November 16.
“It’s just fantastic,” owner Jane Humes, says. “This horse is such a great trail horse. He always brings his “A” game to the big shows.”
The pattern for the senior trail finals had more elevated logs than flat, tight squeezes, side passes and a rain slicker. Tim Kimura has been bringing back many “retro-trail” obstacles.
“The higher and tighter and tougher it is, the better he is,” Jane says about the black gelding. “He’s just an amazing trail horse, he really is.”
Jane purchased the 1993 gelding in 2009. “Beavis” is by Ina Different League and out of Sweet Booger by Booger Niner.
“That’s his name,” Jane laughs, “It’s always been his name. We don’t change barn names, it’s bad luck.” Beavis has been top-10 at AQHA world shows 11 times.
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“I’ve had him three years,” Jane says. “And we bought him basically because I wanted a really great trail horse, something that you could go win with at the big shows. And when you get to the World Show, these patterns are intricate, amazing, and long and high. There are a lot of horses that can get up there that high.”
Jason trained and showed Beavis through the tough pattern.
“Really, the most important thing is to do a lot of really high poles before he goes in. Just make sure he’s really loosened up and picking his feet up. He basically knows how to do everything and I guess the hardest part is knowing when to get out of his way, and knowing when to ask him to do something differently.”
Jane says the hardest part of this pattern was just watching Jason show Beavis.
“It was definitely all hard,” Jane says about the finals pattern. “It seemed, the hardest part for people was to remember to put the slicker back. The hardest part for me was watching because Jason obviously showed him and I crossed my fingers.”
The vibrant orange rain slicker didn’t seem to bother many of the horses in the senior trail finals.
“Beavis is fairly old,” Jane says, “and that is something that was common place 10 years ago or so in the trail. So I’m certain he’s done it a million times.”
This has been a very special year for Jane.
“It means a great deal,” Jane says about winning an AQHA world title. “It’s funny, I’ve probably been coming to the World Show for 15 years, and I finally won the amateur trail with him at the (All American Quarter Horse) Congress. This year, these are my first World Show trophies of any color. And I say trophies because my 2-year-old won the 2-year-old pleasure last night.”
Jay Starnes won the 2-year-old western pleasure finals on Jane’s horse, VS Check My Pulse. Jay and the red roan mare beat out Congress Masters champion, Suddenly A Cool Lady.
“So it has been a whirlwind 24 hours,” Jane says. “I don’t know if I’ll ever sleep again.”