AQHA Announces Versatility Ranch Horse Competition Changes

n July 2009, an AQHA task force recommended changes to several versatility ranch horse rules. Approved by the AQHA Executive Committee, the rule changes will more closely align versatility ranch horse classes withn July 2009, an AQHA task force recommended changes to several versatility ranch horse rules. Approved by the AQHA Executive Committee, the rule changes will more closely align versatility ranch horse classes with

Story originally posted by Horsecity.com Staff

In July 2009, an AQHA task force recommended changes to several versatility ranch horse rules. Approved by the AQHA Executive Committee, the rule changes will more closely align versatility ranch horse classes with AQHA Alliance Partner Ranch Horse Association of America and other ranch horse associations like the American Ranch Horse Association and the Stock Horse of Texas.

These changes will make it easier for exhibitors to compete in multiple associations with a single set of rules and will make it easier for show management to have classes that are dual-approved by multiple associations. The task force also recognized the need to decrease the time needed to conduct the class, which has limited the number of exhibitors able to participate.

Highlights of the changes that will go into effect January 1, 2010, include:

— Separate novice amateur and youth classes, and allow these classes to conduct a reining pattern, then box and drive the cow to the middle of the arena.

— Develop patterns for novice amateur and youth that can also be used for dual-approved classes.

— Combine ranch riding and trail. The exhibitor will complete the trail course and then perform a ranch riding pattern along the perimeter of the arena.
Development of a trail scoring system ranging from minus 1/2 to plus 1 1/2 that can be used by shows.

— Eliminate driving and penning the cow in ranch cutting. Open and amateur competitors will have a two-minute time limit and must work two head. In novice amateur and youth, the exhibitor is only required to work one cow within 1 1/2 minutes.

For complete versatility ranch horse class rules, consult the AQHA Handbook of Rules and Regulations. Exhibitors wishing to receive a rulebook should call AQHA customer service at (806) 376-4811 or log onto http://www.aqha.com/showing/divisions/versatility.html.