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Snaffle Bit Futurity cow horse competition rides into Reno

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National Reined Cow Horse Association 2013 Snaffle Bit Futurity in Reno. Photo by Deb Conrad.

 

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National Reined Cow Horse Association 2013 Snaffle Bit Futurity in Reno. Photo by Deb Conrad.

By Deb Conrad

Walk into the Reno-Sparks Livestock Events Center between now and October 5, and the first thing you’re likely to notice is the mixed fragrance of horses, cows and leather. Then you’ll hear the lively jangle of spurs hanging off the boot heels of cowboys and cowgirls as they walk about, scoping out the cows and competition. The National Reined Cow Horse Association 2013 Snaffle Bit Futurity has arrived in Reno.

For those who have never attended this annual event, competitors are judged in three events with their horses: herd work (cutting), rein work and fence work (cow work).

Steeped heavily in the Vaquero traditions, emphasis in judging is placed on riders having willing, brave, athletic horses that respond to light cues from the riders and perform their jobs with intensity. If the cow being worked gets surly during the herd work or fence work, spectators will get an opportunity to see the true drive of these equines to work the cows.

The stakes are high for competitors. The Futurity Open Champion will go home with $100,000 and a place in reined cow horse history.

No equestrian event would be complete without the opportunity for shopping. The Best of the West Trade Show offers everything from high quality tack and saddles, boots and western apparel to ranch equipment and fencing solutions. The Best of the West Trade Show opens Saturday, September 28 at 9 a.m. and continues daily from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.  until the event closes.

Entry to Snaffle Bit Futurity is free prior to Thursday, October 3 when the finals rounds of the competition begin. Tickets for October 3 through October 5 can be purchased through Ticketmaster.

The schedule can be found online at www.nrchadata.com/pdf/news/2013/SBF_Schedule_2013.pdf.

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