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Justin Wright Tops NRCHA Derby Non Pro Rein Work Prelims

The rein work of the Non Pro preliminaries for the 2008 National Reined Cow Horse Association Derby, held June 17-22 at the Paso Robles Event Center in Paso Robles, California was held Wednesday, June 18. Justin Wright and Talkin Prize topped the field with a 220. Talkin Prize, by Smokums Prize and out of Talkin Peppy Merada, carried Wright to the Non Pro Reserve Championship at the 2007 NRCHA Non Pro Snaffle Bit Futurity, and was a finalist in the 2008 Non Pro NRCHA Stallion Stakes. Talkin Prize is owned by Justin’s father, Walter Wright, both from San Juan Bautista, California.

After the preliminary rounds of herd and rein work, Anne Reynolds, King Hill, Idaho, heads into the cow work section of the preliminary competition in first place on Shirley Smart. The pair topped the preliminary herd work, and finished third in the rein work with a 217.5, bringing their composite score to a 434.5. Shirley Smart, a 4-year-old sorrel mare by Smart Little Lena and out of Shirley McLain, is owned by Reynolds, and was a Non Pro Finalist at the 2007 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity. Reynolds finished second in the rein work on her other horse, Very Smart Flo Jo, owned by her mother, Joyce Pearson of Hailey, Idaho. After the high scores in rein work, Reynolds and Very Smart Flo Jo are third overall in the composite standings.

Holding onto second in the Non Pro Derby composite is Jo Anne Carollo on Repeat Plan, a horse bred, raised and owned by Jo Anne and her husband, Jim, of Atascadero, California. Carollo and Repeat Plan have a 433 composite heading into the cow work on Friday.

In the Intermediate Non Pro division, CR Star Buck, by A Master Plan and out of Lenas Solana, scored a 216.5 to earn top honors for rider Michelle Strickland. CR Star Buck is owned by Michelle and her husband, Chris, of Taft, California. Strickland’s score also put her on top of the composite charts, holding onto the Intermediate Non Pro lead with a 428.5.

Natall Melo of Turlock, California, won the preliminary round of Amateur rein work competition, helping him go into the final event – the cow work – in fifth place. The Amateur awards are based on preliminary round scores, so Melo’s 208.5 could give him an edge heading into the last leg of competition on Friday morning.

Leading the Amateur division into the final leg of competition is Ernie Beal and Shesa Mr Dual Pep. The pair scored a 207 in the rein work and herd work for a 414 composite. Shesa Mr Dual Pep, by Mister Dual Pep and out of Shesa Smoker, is owned by Beal, of Clovis, California.

Ten Non Pro riders and 7 Intermediate Non Pro competitors will advance to the clean slate finals Sunday, June 22.

National Reined Cow Horse Association, the governing body of cow horse competition, is responsible for promoting the sport, insuring high standards of competition and educating members and the public about the history and tradition of the cow horse. Through the support of a Corporate Partner family that includes Wayne Hodges 4-Star Trailers and Outlaw Conversions, Bob's Custom Saddles, Cinch, Inc., Classic Equine, Gist Silversmiths, MD Barns, Platinum Performance, Inc., Nutrena, Quarter Horse News & Performance Horse magazine, the Peppermill Hotel/Resort, Fort Dodge West Nile Innovator, Rios of Mercedes, Merial products ULCERGARD and GASTROGARD, Great American Insurance Company and the Silver Legacy Hotel, the association works to keep the vaquero tradition alive in today’s equine industry. For information on the National Reined Cow Horse Association, call 580-759-4949 or visit the NRCHA Official Web Site at http://www.nrcha.com.


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