Futurity Season is Upon Us!
CR RanchWear sponsored rider, Morgan Cromer, walks to the herd during the NCHA Futurity
In most western performance horse sports there are two categories of shows:
Weekend shows, where the classes are generally determined by a combination of rider level, rider earnings and/or horse earnings. The winnings tend to be much lower and weekend shows are run year-round.
Then there are aged events, this is where young horses are shown, often three year olds, four year olds and five and six year olds are all represented here. Due to the degree of difficulty, aged events are often seen as very prestigious events. In reining, cow horse and cutting, futurity classes are reserved for horses that are three years old. This changes a little bit here and there, with rider levels and such being thrown in for effect, but we’ll keep it simple and just leave it at that. Futurities tend to begin in late summer and roll through fall, hence the excitement around the season change. Each association, the National Cutting Horse Association, the National Reined Cow Horse Association and the National Reining Horse Association, has a major futurity towards the end of each year, which tend to have the most money, and the biggest accolades to win.
Sarah Dawson and Shiney Outlaw were the Open Hackamore Champions at the 2017 Snaffle Bit Futurity
So why the hype around all of this? Why is it that performance horse people are talking more about futurities than pumpkin spiced lattes? Aged events, and especially futurities, are a pretty big deal. Trainers work day in and day out to prepare horses for these events. Non pro riders hone their skills and try not to cry in front of their trainers year-round to show at these events. Clients put up a lot of money to make sure their futurity prospects are feeling their best and prepared for the big shows. Which, of course, also cost a lot of money to enter.
In most operations performance horses are started as long yearlings or early two year olds, then the training begins. It’s a process. In the cow horse, horses have to succeed in three events - reining, boxing and fence work. No easy task for any horse and rider combination! In reining, horses have to be prepared to stop harder, turn faster and transition through their leads prettier, than the next horse in the pen. In cutting the rider has to relinquish control of the reins, they have to throw their hand down while their horse stylishly and almost effortlessly keeps a cow away from the herd.
You’ll likely see all four of these handsome gentlemen at the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity this year. Pictured during World’s Greatest this year is Chris Dawson, Clayton Edsall, Shadd Parkinson, and Brad Lund, all members of the CR RanchWear Team!
In all these events, if the horse makes it to the big futurities finals that each association offers up, the crowd is often deafening, the pressure mounting and the prize money daunting. Those nights, under the big lights of the futurity finals, can make or break a horse, a trainer, a rider, an owner.
The excitement that the big futurity finals drum up is nothing short of spectacular. These events are often weeks long, exciting times for performance horse enthusiasts, trainers and owners to come from all corners of North America, and beyond, to take in the best young horses in the world.
Tricia Perner Gilson shows off her CR RanchWear on Millificent during the NHRA Non Pro Futurity
So, how is CR RanchWear involved? Well, first up, we love all our performance horse riders and our company is often represented by amazing riders across the board at aged events throughout the fall. Secondly, we will be set up at the top three big futurities this year, and we can’t wait to see you there and of course, we love to #CUINCR!
We’ve already been busy heading down the road this year, here’s the CR booth at the Idaho Cutting Horse Futurity in late August!
You can visit the CR RanchWear team at…
The National Reined Cow Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity and Hackamore
October 7-20 in Fort Worth, Texas.
The National Reining Horse Association Futurity
November 22-Dec 1 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma
& The National Cutting Horse Association Futurity
November 14-Dec 9 in Fort Worth, Texas
Western Twist Media (WTM) is the creative outlet of professional writer and influencer, Louisa Murch-White. Murch-White is a published journalist and an avid and enthusiastic member of the performance horse world, competing in cutting horse events. WTM is driven by a passion for the performance horse industry. WTM specializes in assisting brands and companies in the performance horse industry tell their own stories through impactful marketing and branding. Our popular site also features unique and collaborative advertising opportunities. We'd love to help you share your story: WesternTwistMedia@gmail.com