<P>Remember the Ranch FIRST, ITS IMPORTANT TO UNDERSTAND WHAT THE CLASS IS designed for: the AQHA Rulebook states, The horses per- formance should simulate a horse riding outside the confines of an arena and that of a working ranch horse. Terry says thats the absolute key. He points out that the cowboy and ranching way of life is still very much alive, and AQHA is working hard to keep that heritage first and fore- most in ranch classes. There is a responsibility that goes with that, he explains. If we let ranch riding turn into just another horse show event, it will go away. Judges have to keep the integrity of the ranch horse. If you dont know what that is, go find out. Because the ranch shows down here in Texas are huge. Other people want to try it in various other regions. But they dont put enough study into it. We want to keep it true to the ranch. (In this class), we want them to look like a ranch horse, act like a ranch horse, be a ranch horse. Not a circus horse. Not a made-up kind of a horse. We want it to be a ranch horse. Some want it to be just another show horse event, but we are trying to keep the integrity of the event. Terry adds that a common misconception is that quality of movement isnt important in ranch riding, when in fact its critical. Horses are judged on their movement out on the ranch, he explains. For instance, a good ranch horse can lope in a smooth gait that I can ride across two sections of land. I am not going to ride a horse that, when I get there, I am ‘give out from him being so rough riding. The ranch horse needs to be smooth. His hocks need to move up under him. When I am not judging the horse on his maneuvers, I am judging his gaits and his gaits must be smooth. Alex and Terry agree that Tricias home-raised Whizzle For My Spook, a 2010 brown gelding by Spooks Gotta Gun and out of a Topsail Whiz granddaughter, fits the bill of a ranch horse. That horse fulfilled all the things that I look at, Terry says. His neck was as solid as a rock. It stuck out there like it was starched on. His throatlatch moved, his feet moved, but his neck stayed. If the necks not in the way, you can rope. You can drag a calf to the fire. You can drag brush or jump over something in the way. I dont mind where a horses neck is, but it must be a solid part. It must be solid so the cowboy can work. If the horse is rubber-necked with a lot of flex hes not going to be a whole lot of use out there to you because hes going to have trouble balancing. (Whizzle For My Spook) was so balanced in his change of gaits, his movement. He was easy to judge. You did not have to make any hard decisions about him. Hes like all great horses; he just said, ‘Here I am, boss, what do you think? Use to e . By Sara Gugelmeyer Photos by Larri Jo Starkey Alex adds that Tricia didnt hold back when showing, which is important if you want to score big. From the start to the finish, she shows her horse. At no time is she not attacking the pattern. It gives me the appear- ance that shes never trying to mark a maneuver score of zero – an average maneuver. Shes always trying to be on the plus side. Also, the horse has a good expression, a good topline and guides well, all positive characteristics. Each expert then describes her run and what they look for maneuver by maneuver: Walk Terry: I dont want a horse that is walking so fast that you can see the rider is urging him to go fast. A walk is a ground covering, smooth cadence that carries you someplace. That horse should be alert with his ears to his surroundings. He must be at a true gait. The racking walk is a circus event. Thats not what we want out on the range. Thats just as hard to put up with as a horse that wants to run off. Hes going to tire you out. We want you to have control of your horse. We dont want slack reins like a pleasure horse, but we also want a horse that yields to the bridle and stays in place so theres 1. Walk 2. Trot 3. Extended Trot 4. Left lead lope; stop 5. Right hand push gate 6. Sidepass left 7. Walk over logs 8. Trot corners 9. Right lead lope 10. Extended lope 11. Change leads 12. Left lead lope 13. Stop and back Amateur Ranch Riding Finals Gate Note: The drawn description of this pattern is only intended for the general depictions of the pattern. Contestants should utilize the arena space to best exhibit their horses. RANCH HORSE JOURNAL JUNE 2016 29 </p> <UL><LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/1/1/">Front-Cover</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/2/2/">Inside-Front-Cover</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/3/3/">Page-1</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/4/4/">Page-2</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/5/5/">Page-3</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/6/6/">Page-4</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/7/7/">Page-5</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/8/8/">Page-6</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/9/9/">Page-7</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/10/10/">Page-8</a></LI> <LI><a href="http://www.mzines.net/publication/1310/ohwywrpjs/11/11/">Page-9</a></LI> <LI><a 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