AQHA Waives World Show Qualifying

Courtesy AQHA

The AQHA Executive Committee has made the decision to waive qualifying for all classes, with the exception of an alternative qualifying requirement for open-division roping classes, at the 2021 Farnam AQHA World Championship Show and AQHA Select World Championship Show, presented by Adequan® (polysulfated glycosaminoglycan), tentatively scheduled for November 1-20 at the OKC Fairgrounds in Oklahoma City.

Earlier this year, AQHA also modified the qualifying requirements for the AQHA Versatility Ranch Horse World Championships, AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals, National Ranch and Stock Horse Alliance National Championship Show and Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show.

“The decision to waive traditional qualifying for the 2021 Farnam AQHA World and Adequan® Select World was based on in-depth discussions with the Executive Committee, AQHA Show Council, AQHA Affiliate Advisory Board and AQHA Show Department,” said Justin Billings, AQHA chief show officer. “We reviewed the number of available shows to qualify for each of the events based on the three-year pre-pandemic average (2017, 2018 and 2019); number of individuals currently qualified per class compared to the three-year average; qualifying data for 2020, which was significantly impacted by COVID-19; plus, the current qualifying data for 2021, as of February 14, 2021.”

Due to the pandemic, there have been significant differences in the number of shows that have been available during the 2021 Farnam AQHA World and Adequan® Select World qualifying periods as compared to the past three years. The data shows a 37% decrease in available shows to qualify for the Adequan® Select World and a 47% decrease in qualifying opportunities for the Farnam AQHA World.

The information also shows that there is currently a 64% decrease in the number of individuals qualified per class for the 2021 Adequan® Select World and nearly 82% decrease in the current number of qualified individuals per class for the 2021 Farnam AQHA World.

“Although there are locations across the United States where members have the opportunity to qualify, the data proves that as a whole, qualifying opportunities have been extremely impacted not only in the United States, but also worldwide, during the 2021 qualifying period,” said Billings. “We are committed to providing a safe show environment, including making modifications to qualifying requirements to give our showing members the opportunity to continue to do what they love – showing their American Quarter Horses. We look forward to seeing more members at AQHA-approved shows that are hosted according to local, state and federal mandates by AQHA affiliates to prepare for the 2021 AQHA championship shows and to also qualify to compete at the AQHA championship shows in 2022.”

As the outlook for the pandemic improves and American Quarter Horse owners and exhibitors prepare for this year’s show season, AQHA will resume traditional qualifying requirements for the 2022 AQHA championship shows. The Executive Committee, AQHA Show Council and staff will also evaluate if the Adequan® Select World will continue to be hosted in conjunction with the Farnam AQHA World or if the show will be held as a standalone event in 2022. Once a decision is made, the Association will publish an official announcement on AQHA.com.

Open-Division Roping Qualifying

With guidance from the AQHA Cattle Advisory Committee and approval from the AQHA Show Council and Executive Committee, AQHA is debuting a pilot program in 2021 for junior heading, senior heading, junior heeling, senior heeling, junior tie-down and senior tie-down, which would allow American Quarter Horses that compete in at least three AQHA-sanctioned events in the respective class during the traditional qualifying period a lower entry fee than American Quarter Horses that do not compete in three AQHA-sanctioned events between August 1, 2020, and July 31, 2021. Additional information will be released at a later date.

Performance Halter

Horses competing in performance halter at the Farnam AQHA World and Adequan® Select World must abide by AQHA SHW365.3 for performance halter eligibility regarding having earned a performance or racing Register of Merit. With the exception of racehorses that have earned a racing ROM, all other performance halter-eligible horses are required to enter and legitimately compete in a performance class. When showing in the performance class, exhibitors must maintain the integrity of the class in which they are competing. Judges will adhere to AQHA Rule SHW910.5 when officiating, “eliminate any horse/exhibitor as an entry which he/she feels is in violation of the intent of AQHA’s prohibited conduct rules, or which he/she does not feel has legitimately attempted to exhibit the horse to the best of the horse’s ability.”

In 2020, the AQHA Executive Committee approved a rule change with respect to AQHA championship shows, stating that open, amateur, youth and Select competitors entering performance halter at an AQHA world show and using barrel racing, pole bending or stake race to fulfill the performance class requirement must complete the run, without disqualification, and with a clock time within 3 seconds of the fastest time, exclusive of any time penalties to be eligible for performance halter classes. View the approved rule published in April 2020.

The tentative schedule and entry information will be published at www.aqha.com/worldshow once finalized.

About the Show

The 2021 Farnam AQHA World and Adequan® Select World are the premier events in the equine industry for amateur, Select amateur and open exhibitors. The combined show will also host the Adequan® Level 2 and Nutrena Level 1 championships. The shows will be hosted according to local, state and federal mandates. The shows feature three weeks of exciting competition, educational opportunities and a bountiful trade show. For more information, visit www.aqha.com/worldshow.

About the Sponsors

Farnam is the official title sponsor of the Farnam AQHA World. Farnam knows – it’s all about the horse. Learn more about your trusted partner in caring for your horse. 

Adequan®, the official equine joint therapy of AQHA, is the proud title sponsor of the Adequan® Select World and the Adequan® Level 2 Championships. When you choose a joint therapy for your horses, choose Adequan®. 

Read more about Nutrena, the official feed of AQHA and title sponsor of the 2021 Nutrena Level 1 Championships.

AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHAon Twitter and visit www.aqha.com/news.

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