What’s a Derby? What’s a Stakes? NRCHA Shows Explained

The 2013 NRCHA Celebration of Champions includes the NRCHA World show, the World’s Greatest Horseman and the Celebration of Champions Derby.

Lots of titles all packed into one event.

It got me thinking—I’ve never really looked up what the all of the different NRCHA event titles mean. So I looked them up and here’s the basic definition of each event:

Bridle Spectacular

An NRCHA show for horses of any age. All horses must be shown in a bridle with traditional romal reins.

Derby 

An NRCHA show for 4- and 5-year-old horses.They can be shown in a snaffle or a hackamore. They have to be shown in the same headgear for the entire show. It’s ok if they’ve been shown down the fence in a bridle before.

Hackamore Classic

The NRCHA show for horses 5-years-old or younger that have never been shown in a bridle down the fence before. They have to be shown in a hackamore.

Snaffle Bit Futurity 

The NRCHA show for 3-year-old horses shown in a smooth snaffle bit. It’s ok if the horse has been shown in a hackamore or bridle before, but they can never have been shown down the fence in the hackamore or bridle.

Stallion Stakes / Stakes

The NRCHA show for 4-  and 5-year old horses that are the get of “subscribed stallions“. The horses have to be shown in either a snaffle or a hackamore. Horses have to be shown in the same headgear through the entire show. Horses can only be shown in a hackamore if they’ve never been shown in a bridle before.

World’s Greatest Horseman

The only NRCHA show that has four events instead of three: herd work, rein work, cow work, and the additional event, steer stopping. It is required that the horses are shown in the same bit for all four events.

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