50 Things You May or May Not Know About Reining

The 2015 NRHA Futurity kicked off on Thanksgiving Day with almost 500 entries in the Open Futurity Go Round. In honor of its 50th year running, I have compiled a list of 50 reining fun facts and historical achievements of horses and riders alike in the industry. Feel free to use these at your next barn Christmas party, or whenever really, because who doesn’t love trivia?

1.       The National Reining Horse Association was founded in 1966

2.       1966 was also the year the first Futurity was held, in Columbus, Ohio

3.       20 Years later it was held in OKC, Oklahoma, which is where it remains today

4.       In 1983 the Futurity purse was valued at over $100,000

5.       Hollywood Jac 86 named NRHA first million-dollar sire in 1994

6.       Bill Horn named first million-dollar rider in 1995

7.       Reining was the first accepted western discipline of United States Equestrian Team

8.       Tim McQuay was named the first two million dollar rider in 2005

9.       First woman to win NRHA major event is Kelly Zewifel

10.   Mandy McCutcheon is first woman to be NRHA million-dollar rider

11.   Shawn Flarida was the first rider to be named a three and five million-dollar rider for the NRHA

12.   There are a total of 10 NRHA approved patterns

13.   The 2015 Futurity promises a purse valued at over $2 Million dollars.

14.   Reining evolved from the everyday ranch horse

15.   NRHA shows pay out more than $13 million dollars annually

16.   First World Championship for reining was held in Spain in 2002

17.   Dale Wilkinson was the first NRHA Futurity winner riding POCOROCHIE BO

18.   Derby horses are ages four to six years of age

19.   Dale Wilkinson was also the first NRHA Hall of Fame inductee in 1986

20.   AQHA held official reining classes in 1950

21.   Judging of individual maneuvers did not occur until 1985

22.   NRHA has over 19,000 members as of 2015

23.   There are 55 local affiliate clubs

24.   Worldwide, there are 38 clubs abroad.

25.   Wimpys Little Step was the first open futurity champion to sire another open futurity champion (Wimpys Little Chic)

26.   Wimpys Little Chic is first horse in NRHA futurity to win NRHA Futurity, NRBC, and Derby consecutively

27.   70 is considered an average score for a modern reining pattern

28.   1,400 youth across the nation show at NRHA approved classes

29.   Americana (1988) was the first NRHA approved show held in Europe

30.   Generally between 30 and 40 3-year olds will advance to the finals in the Open Futurity Go Rounds

31.   Continental King was the first horse to be inducted to the Hall of Fame

32.   Quarter Horses are not the only breed used in reining, an annual Arabian and half Arabian futurity is held in Scottsdale, Arizona.

33.   Futurity horses are all three years of age

34.   There are 17 approved divisions to show in

35.   A reining pattern consists of only 7-8 maneuvers in any given order

36.   AQHA has 11 approved patterns for reining

37.   First European Championship was held in Italy in 2003

38.   Arcese Quarter Horses is NRHA’s only $2 Million dollar owner to date

39.   Mr Magnum Dun It sold for $300,000 in 2013, becoming the highest selling horse in NRHA history

40.   Bob Loomis Quarter Horses Inc. is the top futurity breeder

41.   First NRHA Derby held 1980

42.   Topsail Whiz is the first sire to reach $10 million dollars, as of 2014

43.   Shirley’s Folley is the highest earning Futurity dam

44.   Topsail Whiz is the highest earning Futurity sire

45.   233 is the highest reining score ever recorded. Sean Flarida rode Wimpys Little Step to this achievement

46.   Mandy McCutcheon, to date, is the top non-pro rider, winning 8 non-pro futurities

47.   Miss Tinsel Town is the NRHA All-Time Leading Dam as of 2014

48.   NRHA Futurity had 534 entries in 1988 compared to 2,815 entries in 2014

49.   Freestyle reining is an NRHA and AQHA approved class

50.   Wimpys Little Step is the youngest NRHA sire to reach $6 Million dollar sire achievement, as of 2015 his foal crops have earned over $8 Million dollars

To learn more about reining, be sure to check out these great sites:




 -Emily Bomgardner