NRCHA Collegiate Challenge

College stock teams compete in first reined cow horse challenge at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions.

The American Quarter Horse Journal

Emily Dahle of Snyder, Colorado, represents Northeastern Junior College as she rides Rey Royal Boon on February 20 during the first NRCHA Collegiate Challenge in Fort Worth, Texas. Rey Royal Boon is a 2008 red roan gelding by Smart Royal Rey and out of HH Highbrows Lil One by Smart Lil Highbrow. He was bred by Jim Cole of Wichita, Kansas.


In the first reined cow horse collegiate challenge, Texas Tech University’s seniors stood up to the test.

On February 20, during the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions in Fort Worth, Texas, eight colleges took part in the competition. Three students from each college rode their own or college-owned horses.

“It was a tough selection, because I’ve got 19 students on my team this year, and every one of them was capable of coming here and showing,” said Chance O’Neal, coach of the Texas Tech stock horse team. “I had to narrow it down to three. I felt like the fairest thing to do was pick my three seniors.”

In most stock horse competitions, the students ride in six divisions, with one student-athlete in each division. The accomplishments of all that team’s riders are added up to determine a winner. For the first competition in conjunction with NRCHA, the students rode in just three divisions: non-pro, limited non-pro and novice.

The Red Raider seniors came through, with Justin Stanton of Idalou, Texas, winning first in non-pro on RD Dulce Olena, his backup horse.

“His main horse died of colic before the show,” Chance said. “He was riding his other horse here.”

RD Dulce Olena is a 2006 sorrel gelding by Dulces Smart Lena and out of RD Sweet Olena by CD Olena. He was bred by Ralph Depew of Perryton, Texas.

Susanna Lyles of Las Cruces, New Mexico, won the novice division for Texas Tech on Dun Colord Whiz Rozy, a 2008 red dun mare by Top Dun Tori Whiz and out of Foxy Lady Smoke by Smokin Streak. The mare was bred by Jean Beasley of Granbury, Texas.

Walker Priester of Odum, Georgia, won the limited non-pro division for North Central Texas College on Peekaboo MIF, a 1998 bay mare by Mifillena and out of No Superstition by War Leo Sam. She was bred by Barbara Kronengold of Eustis, Florida.

Team Results

  1. Texas Tech University

  2. North Central Texas College

  3. West Texas A&M University

  4. New Mexico State University

  5. University of Arkansas

  6. Colorado State University

  7. Northeastern Junior College

  8. Tarleton State University