Topsail Oak and Shelby Reine
by Alicia HarrisThe American Quarter Horse Journal
Each of the 21 entries in the ranch pleasure finals at the 2013 Built Ford Tough Youth World Championship Show had already made an impressive accomplishment. Out of 89 entries, they managed to make it to the very first ranch pleasure world championship finals offered in the youth division.
Names were called out one by one until, finally, only one horse and rider remained. Shelby Reine and Topsail Oak had won the world title.
It's your moment; make it last forever! Videos of individual runs and class finals from the Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show are available for purchase at www.aqha.com/mymoment. Plus, you can watch Ford Youth World video footage 24/7. This new service is optimized for Internet Explorer 10, Safari and most mobile Web browsers.
Shelby, of La Place, Louisiana, was extremely pleased with her win on August 8. A modest girl of few words, she couldn’t hide the excitement on her face as she left the arena.
“(Ford Youth World) has been really good,” Shelby said. “I have really been practicing a lot (for this).”
Her gelding, aka “Fred,” is by the all-time leading NRHA sire and NRHA Hall of Famer Topsail Whiz, and has found quite a bit of success as a reining horse with Shelby on board. But for 2013, Shelby wanted to try something a little different.
“(Ranch pleasure) looked like something different and new that I wanted to try,” Shelby said. “Fred’s really fun to ride and he likes to do different things besides reining.”
Although Shelby said there was really no pressure involved in showing in the first youth ranch pleasure finals class, she said that there was one difficult element of the pattern: walking over the logs.
“Going over the logs (was difficult),” Shelby said. “He didn’t like to go over the logs, but he finally did it good (in the class).”
Shelby worked with Fred a lot at home to get him to do that portion of the pattern well. Her biggest challenge this year has been getting him ready for shows. Aside from showing in ranch pleasure, she also qualified for the Ford Youth World in reining and made it to the finals with Fred and another horse, Diamonds Lil Shiner.
“(My biggest challenge was) to get (Fred) to be able do both patterns well and not mess up,” Shelby said.
Many people helped her on her journey to Oklahoma City, including Mozaun McKibben, the winner of the first open ranch pleasure championship, held at the 2012 AQHA World Championship Show. He gave her quite a bit of advice leading up to the class, but one piece of advice stuck with her as she was heading into the arena.
Mozaun told her: “Do your best.”