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<em>Journal</em>

The Rundown: News Roundup

Find out what AQHA news you’ve been missing, from EHV-1 webinars, to updates regarding the 2012 Road to the Horse, $2.5 million grants and the College National Finals Rodeo.

By Tara Christiansen
The American Quarter Horse Journal
June 15, 2011

Chris Cox and American Quarter Horse gelding, Perfect Performance, winners of the 2011 Road to the Horse competition.

Chris Cox and American Quarter Horse Perfect Performance won the 2011 Road to the Horse competition. Journal photo.

CSU Equine Veterinarians Host EHV-1 Webinar

Colorado State University veterinarians are hosting a community workshop on Monday, June 27, with webinar locations to talk about how the recent equine herpesvirus-1 outbreak occurred, how a similar outbreak may be prevented in the future and what future research could tell veterinarians and horse owners about why the disease is so devastating to horses.

Two speakers are equine veterinarians at Colorado State University's Veterinary Teaching Hospital, and one speaker is a veterinarian and director of the university's equine sciences program with expertise in infectious disease. All three veterinarians were involved in helping professional equine organizations and horse owners through the recent outbreak of EHV-1. The equine section of the CSU hospital is working toward establishing an equine neurologic disease center to study, prevent and treat illnesses such as EHV-1 and other conditions that impact the neurological system.

The workshop will consist of:

  • An overview of the recent EHV-1 outbreak
  • Advice for horse owners and event planners about how to prevent EHV-1 and other infectious disease outbreaks through basic measures and biosecurity practices
  • What veterinarians know about EHV-1 and how a common, usually not harmful infection can sporadically turn into a disastrous outbreak
  • Why EHV-1 is somewhat of a mystery and the questions that still need to be answered regarding its impact on the neurological system
  • Research CSU is conducting to better understand these questions
  • CSU's efforts to establish a center to study and treat equine neurological diseases and conditions

The workshop will be held at the Colorado State University Denver Center, Suite 101, at 475 17th St., Denver. Live webinars also will be available at the university's Veterinary Teaching Hospital, DMC Presentation Room, 300 Drake Road, Fort Collins, Colorado, or online. The workshop is slated to begin at 5 p.m.MDT.

Presentations are from 5:30-6:30 p.m. MDT, with a question-and-answer session immediately following. Extended question-and-answer sessions and receptions will be hosted at the Denver Center and Veterinary Teaching Hospital. Events conclude at 8 p.m. MDT.

Presenters are:

  • Dr. Jerry Black, head of the Equine Sciences Program at CSU. Dr. Black was heavily involved in the National Cutting Horse Association response to the recent EHV-1 outbreak. The outbreak is believed to have begun at a cutting horse event in Utah. Dr. Black is a board member and past president of the American Association of Equine Practitioners and a current board member of the American Horse Council.
  • Dr. Paul Lunn, head of the Department of Clinical Sciences at CSU's College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. His research interests center on equine immunology and infectious disease with a specific focus on equine influenza and EHV-1 infections. He is chairman of the Research Advisory Committee of the Grayson-Jockey Club Research Foundation and is a past president of the American Association of Veterinary Clinicians.
  • Dr. Lutz Goehring, a veterinarian at CSU's Veterinary Teaching Hospital with a research focus on epidemiological and pathological aspects of EHV, as well as equine neurological disorders. He heads a team of CSU researchers devoted to multiple aspects of infection, including EHV, such as the pathogenesis of the infections and how to prevent them.

The event is free and open to the public, but space is limited at the Denver and Fort Collins event venues. Participants must pre-register to attend the event and are encouraged to do so as soon as possible.

Registration is available at the CSU webinar site. The weblink to view the presentation live will be provided at the time of registration.

Road to the Horse Goes Global

The 2011 Road to the Horse Legends event matched the United States’ three largest superstar clinicians against one another in a horsemanship duel of epic proportions that left the equine industry abuzz.

What everyone wants to know is, “How are they going to top this?”

Event owner/producer Tootie Bland’s answer: Go global, find the world’s best clinicians, place them in an innovative international team format and let them go toe-to-toe for the World Championship of Colt Starting at the 2012 Road to the Horse March 9-11 in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. It’ll pit the United States against Canada and Australia. For contestant announcements, check out www.roadtothehorse.com.

“Going global means new horsemen, new styles of horsemanship and an exciting challenge to see who’s the best in the world,” Tootie says. ”Road to the Horse will host the first-ever international match in colt starting. National pride is on the line, and we will find out in Murfreesboro who rules the world.”

Traditionally, three to four clinicians have been matched up for this competition, which gives competitors just a few short hours over two days to train an untouched young horse to accept a rider in front of an audience. While training has been limited to two days in the past, the 2012 event will feature round pen sessions on all three days.

“We’re doubling down! Never before have six clinicians shared the arena floor, and never before have we paired competitors up in a team format. Road to the Horse is known for its twists and turns, and we’ll definitely have some challenges the competitors will have to face. The excitement of this event is destined to be Tennessee’s equivalent of the Kentucky Derby,” Tootie says.

Tickets to the 2012 Road to the Horse will go on sale July 4. Members of the Road to the Horse Nation, the event’s exclusive fan club, will have access to advanced ticket sales beginning June 21.

For an annual fee of $39.95, Road to the Horse Nation members receive privileges such as advance ticket purchase opportunities, a special prime seating section, merchandise and apparel discounts, early admission to the event and an interactive Road to the Horse Nation website. To become a member, visit www.roadtothehorsenation.com.

For more information on Road to the Horse 2012, visit www.roadtothehorse.com or call (325) 736-5000.

About Road to the Horse

Road to the Horse, the world championship of colt starting, is unlike any other event in the equine or entertainment industry. The three-day event will match six horse trainers and clinicians against one another as they train unstarted colts to ride in just a few short hours in front of a live audience and television cameras.

By combining education, edge-of-your-seat suspense, entertainment and the love of the horse, Road to the Horse has been responsible for solidifying the position of today’s horsemanship heroes and launching the careers of tomorrow’s new stars. In the process, the event itself has become a catalyst for the advancement of natural horsemanship.

Hosted by Rick Lamb, of RFD-TV’s “The Horse Show With Rick Lamb,” spectators are guaranteed not only to have a good time, but also to walk away with training knowledge that will improve their relationship with horses. The event is sponsored in part by AQHA.

TAMU Equine Initiative Receives $2.5 Million Grant

The Burnett Foundation recently awarded a $2.5 million challenge grant to the Texas A&M University Foundation for the Equine Initiative in honor of Dr. Glenn Blodgett, a leader in equine veterinary medicine and a 2011 TAMU College of Veterinary Medicine Distinguished Alumnus. The grant establishes the Glenn Blodgett Equine Chair.

This cornerstone gift will help support the Equine Initiative, a collaboration between the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences and the College of Agriculture and Life Science Department of Animal Science at TAMU to establish one of the premiere equine programs in the nation. The Equine Initiative will utilize TAMU's expertise to build an equine program that will graduate industry leaders and generate research and veterinary medical care that will improve the equine industry and horse welfare. The Equine Initiative is built on four major imperatives, including curriculum enhancement, outreach and engagement expansion, facility construction and partnership development.

College National Finals Rodeo

Don’t forget that the College National Finals Rodeo is happening right now! The CNFR runs June 12-18 in Casper, Wyoming, and you can follow the action on Twitter at www.twitter.com/collegerodeo or by searching on Twitter for #CNFR.

The CNFR is where the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association crowns individual event champions in saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, bull riding, team roping, barrel racing, breakaway roping and goat tying. National team championships are awarded to both men’s and women’s teams. More than 400 cowboys and cowgirls from more than 100 universities and colleges compete each year at the CNFR.