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Critique my AQHA Hunt Seat Equitation

Halter is not included in the all-around of this show. Rules are very specifically (and nicely) laid out by the show committee. This show is an interesting format because they are offering AQHA, APHA, and an open show all at the same time. The all-around awards are for the open show, but I’ll be doing the AQHA classes anyway, because we might as well since we are there.

However, I did enter the halter class anyway, simply because it is before Showmanship and might help him “settle in” going in for a halter class or two first, before the showmanship class, so that is my strategy!


Humor me. I think we live semi in the same region. What circuit is doing saddles for the all around? I’m brining a horse home from training to be a flat eq horse and would like to find some circuits with good numbers and nice prizes. He will be a challenge as at 18 hands, we will NOT be doing the western classes; so all arounds must be won on the eq, HUS, and halter alone. But I’ve done it before with a previous eq horse. A saddle would be a nice incentive to get out and show semi-locally.

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I’m guessing this show is very similar to our AQHA/APHA/Open shows. If so, check the premium to confirm which divisions offer a saddle to the all-around champ. Also, there’s usually a minimum number of classes you need to enter for all-around, across a range of classes. My horse is not a western pleasure horse, but he’s great in trail classes. So I find western classes where he fits best.

I mean, my horse is senior age and I don’t know that I care to teach him to neck rein. AQHA wise, HUS/eq/halter covers the required classes across the required divisions to qualify. I’m just curious what state/region we’re talking here. It might be worth the haul for the chance at a saddle, rather than like a bucket or a step stool that doesn’t actually help me with such a giraffe.

Totally understand. My barn took a slew of horses and riders to a big AQHA/APHA show that advertised great awards. Well… the young kids in walk jog classes (which are huge) got a package of plastic zip ties for 1st.


:rofl: Yeah, it can be a bit tone deaf at times.

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WTF!? At least a plastic cup with the show/club name on it would make more sense for walk jog classes. Talk about false advertising.


On… purpose?!

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I audibly laughed, thank you.


You know these days, I would get excited about some extra zip ties, but for a kid I can understand how utterly uninspiring they could be, ha.

This reminds me of a show I attended YEARS ago where the short stirrup and childrens pony kids won–wait for it–bottle openers. 20+ kids on ponies under the age of 12, and I think someone must have had a brain fart thinking about the prizes.

Some parents laughed; some parents were mightily peeved.


Yes, on purpose.

It made quite an impression on both the horse show moms and my trainer, because when I asked if we were going to the same show again (it’s held in a nearby state) I was told, “Oh hell no!” :rofl:


:rofl: :rofl:


The slightly more civilized version was, I suppose, at a major Calif. USEF show that gave crystal shot glasses to the class winners of the short stirrup division. “We don’t give out bottle openers. Our children drink their beverages from bottles that have corks.” :laughing:


I won a bottle opener in a high school polo tournament :sweat_smile:


“Neck” reining is really just riding the horse off your seat and legs. It has absolutely nothing to do with the bridle or the neck. Any reasonably well-broke horse can do it.


I guess it depends on HOW MANY years ago. Soda used to come in glass bottles that required a bottle opener.


North Dakota

The show is listed on the website Missouri River Classic.

This is the 3rd year for sure they’ve done the show. Might be the 4th.
They do most of their information on social media.
In past years, they have given away 1 saddle. This is the first year they are doing a saddle for each division. Open, Amateur, and Youth. They’ve made slight adjustments every year, as the show has grown.

Bummer. I’ll be at the Big A in Atlanta. Maybe I can make it to the Dakotas at some point in the next year or so with this guy I keep at home.

Not that it couldn’t be done, but around here, most of the show horses do go both English and Western, so if you’d really want a shot at an all-around, you likely won’t gain enough points with only doing the English classes and skipping the Western classes.

Normally most shows, I don’t have a chance either at the AA, because there usually isn’t a good balance between the ranch horse classes offered and the usual show classes offered (western pleasure, showing trail, horsemanship etc). But this show, there is. They’ve made it very fair between the ranch classes and the show classes, so that was nice. Which is why I’m going for it!


It probably varies. I’ve done it in heavy all around areas with just the hunt seat classes alone. Truly I just need the points for qualification. But hardware (and obviously saddles) are a pretty nice perk too.