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Quarter horse assn changes World Show policy

May 30, 2011

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The American Quarter Horse Association has altered its World Show qualifying conditions as a result of the Equine Herpesvirus-1 outbreak in the western states of the US.

The AQHA Executive Committee has extended the Select World Championship Show qualifying period, which was to end on May 31, to June 26.

And because of the cancellations of cutting events in the next week, qualifying points for Select cutting have been lowered to one-half point, and AQHA will continue to monitor future cancellations based on National Cutting Horse Association's recommendations.

"Several major shows held this last weekend experienced drastically reduced exhibitor numbers," said AQHA President Peter J. Cofrancesco III.

"Major shows in California, Colorado, Idaho, New Mexico, Montana, Texas, Washington, Alberta and other states or provinces have had low exhibitor turn out and some in those locations have already canceled shows."

While most shows held east of the Mississippi River have not seen any noticeable reduction in exhibitor numbers, asking exhibitors to drive farther-than-expected distances or to risk any possible exposure is not the responsible course of action to take at this time, the association said.

Several major circuits are slated for June, including but not limited to the Redbud Classic in Oklahoma, Nebraska's Cornhusker Classic, the Tar Heel Triple Classic and North Carolina Jamboree.

"Hopefully, this additional move by the AQHA Executive Committee will give Select exhibitors the opportunity to qualify," Cofrancesco said. "Points earned between June 1 and June 26 will count twice for Select exhibitors - once for the 2011 show and again for the 2012 show.

"Other than supporting NCHA's decision to cancel its cutting events for a period of time, there have not and, at this time, we do not expect there to be any mandatory cancellations of AQHA shows - all have been voluntary, and we support our show managers' responsible decision to cancel," he added.

"Because of the numerous show cancellations, this has created a hardship for some exhibitors trying to finish qualifying for the Adequan Select World - even with the lowering of qualifying points. We have listened and want to support our horse owners who choose not to travel. Horse activities should be fun and safe for exhibitors and horses hoping to make it to Amarillo for the Adequan Select World. AQHA hopes to underscore that philosophy by taking these steps."

AQHA's competition department staff, working with the Executive Committee, will continue to monitor shows and any potential effect on qualifying for November's Bank of America Amateur and FedEx Open world championship shows. Qualifying for those events continues to July 31.



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