2011 Cactus Reining Classic Wrap-up

A record number of phenomenal horses, awesome riders, and warm hearts all converged at the 2011 Cactus Reining Classic March 9-13 in Scottsdale, Arizona.A record number of phenomenal horses, awesome riders, and warm hearts all converged at the 2011 Cactus Reining Classic March 9-13 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Story originally posted by: Alden Corrigan for RBB, Inc

A record number of phenomenal horses, awesome riders, and warm hearts all converged at the 2011 Cactus Reining Classic March 9-13 in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Entries were up 50% over the previous year, the weather was spectacular, and over 13,000 avid Reining fans who were unable attend, logged close to 3,400 hours of viewing time on Classic Video’s free live streaming online coverage of the show in its entirety.

Random Acts of Kindness

Tricia Gilson, wife of professional Tracer Gilson and mother of three, set the tone for this year’s event by organizing the Grant Berg Benefit.Grant, the 4 year old son of fellow trainers Mike and Kristi Berg of Temecula, California has a condition known as Dandy-Walker Syndrome.Gilson knew that her fellow Reiners had wanted to help the Berg’s. "We know there are medical bills and things that add up, so we thought having a silent auction here at the Cactus Reining Classic would be a great idea, and something we could do to help … everyone jumped on the bandwagon.They were so happy that there was something they could do to help," said Gilson.

Thanks to the efforts of the organizers, donors and patrons, The Grant Berg Benefit raised in excess of $25,000. Interested parties can continue to make donations by contacting Tricia Gilson at tagurit414@aol.com.

Teach Your Children Well

The Marler’s were about to head home to El Paso, Texas when Taylen asked his dad Todd if he could borrow his Derby horse 5 year old Wimpys Lil Twister (Wimpys Little Step x Watch Joe Holly Doc) to compete in the Youth classes the next day.

His dad said yes, and the rest is history. Taylen and Wimpys Lil Twister went on to post a score 71.5 to take the win in both 13 and under classes. "It’s incredible. She’s such a good minded horse and always real honest, you’ve just got to love a horse like that" said the elder Marler.

Leading By Example

Andrea Fappani was a busy man during the Cactus Reining Classic. When it came time to present the Short Stirrup 10 and under awards, Andrea hopped off of his Derby horse and ran to the ring to present to and be photographed with each and every rider in the class.

"Those Youth kids look up to good examples and anytime I get a chance to support the Youth … it’s more important than anything else.Just taking a picture next to a trainer that you admire does more than getting a present.If you show a little bit of heart in telling them that they did a good job, it sparks them up and makes them do better." says Fappani.

Age is Just a Number

2011 marks the first year that the Cactus Reining Classic has offered both Open and Non Pro Maturity classes, and by all accounts they were big hits with the exhibitors, owners, trainers and spectators alike.

The first inaugural $10,000 Outta Dough Open Maturity Class was a nail biter with Wimpys Little Buddy (Wimpys Little Step x All Thats Dun) ridden by Martin Muehlsteatter, owned by Madalyn Roberts of San Diego, California posting a 150.5 to narrowly edge out Starbucks Finest (Smart Starbuck x Dun It Sweetly) ridden by Andrea Fappani owned by Jim and Pat Warren of Rancho Oso Rio in Scottsdale, Arizona scoring a 149.5 in a run off after tying for first place.

The Dun Gotta Gun $5,000 Non Pro Maturity Level 4 title went to El Correra Del Gallo (Gallo Del Cielo x Significant Shine) ridden by Lindsey Paul-Foreman owned by Randy Paul of Scottsdale, Arizona scoring a 147.0 topping a field of 16.

It was Zachary Beals of Cave Creek, Arizona and his 9 year old Whiz Bing Bang Boom (Topsail Whiz x Sheza Sonic Boom) who dominated the Non Pro, Intermediate Non Pro and Limited Non Pro classes, to become the recipient of Rhodes River Ranch ~ CDR Farms’ generosity by earning the High Point Non Pro Award.

Non Pro Award Winner

The Conquistador Whiz $23,000 Added Non Pro Derby sponsored by Silver Spurs Equine was virtually a clean sweep for Shaundra Ruckman of Phoenix, Arizona on Rufanicki (Lil Ruf Peppy x Chexanicki). The pair posted a score of 220.0 to win all but the Prime Time division of the Non Pro Derby out of a field of 46. Ruckman is now at the top of the leader board in the Four Seasons Non Pro Trifecta Challenge for a 5 night~6 day stay at the Four Seasons Jackson Hole Resort.

Ruckman trains with Martin Muehlstaetter and was thrilled with her first outing on five year old Rufanicki. "This was my first time showing him, so I was just going in to see how it would go, and it was really, really good. I was nervous when I walked in, but I just figured that I’d go show and see what I had" she said.

One Two Finish

The 2011 Cactus Reining Classic theme of leading by example played itself out in the Conquistador Whiz $42,000 Added Open Derby sponsored by Silver Spurs Equine. When the dust settled it was Tinker With Guns (Colonels Smoking Gun x Tinker Nic) ridden by Andrea Fappani, owned by Jim and Pat Warren’s Rancho Oso Rio of Scottsdale, Arizona posting a 227.0 securing the win, and Star For The Chicks (Smart Starbuck x Dun It By Chick) ridden by Fappani Performance Horses Assistant Trainer Arno Honstetter and owned by Jan Peterson of Menlo Park, CA with a score 225.5 taking home the Reserve Champion honors.

View more info here http://www.cactus-reining-classic.com/