THE FACES OF THE 2021 VERSATILE HORSE AND RIDER COMPETITION
Sponsored by Nutrena, the hugely popular Versatile Horse and Rider Competition will take place on Friday, November 12, 2021, in the Coliseum at the Eastern States Exposition during Equine Affaire in Massachusetts. Under the watchful eyes of this year’s judge, internationally acclaimed clinician Ed Dabney, competitors will tackle a timed obstacle course specially designed to test their horsemanship skills and athletic prowess. This year, eighteen horse-and-rider pairs are slated to compete for $5,500 in cash and other prizes. In this post, meet the first four horses and riders who will compete in this fall’s exciting event!
Horse: Que Sera Sera, 21-year-old Chincoteague Pony mare
Partnered for more than five years, April and “Moon” compete in obstacles, trail, eventing, and hunt seat equitation. April and Moon have competed in three previous VHRC competitions, placing in the top 10 each time. Although Moon is now 21 years old, April says the little mare is as capable and solid as ever, and the pair are excited for the opportunity to compete in this year’s Versatile Horse and Rider Competition.
Horse: Beckett’s Hickory Doc, 20-year-old American Quarter Horse gelding
Jackie and “Roanie” have earned a number of buckles in reined cow horse, versatility, and cow sorting events. They’ve also competed in the VHRC a total of five times, taking home a 4th place one year and a 5th place another year. Although Roanie is now semi-retired, Jackie has high hopes for competing in this year’s VHRC and can’t wait to ride into the coliseum aboard Roanie once again.
Horse: Slip Me a Dual Pep, 21-year-old American Quarter Horse gelding
VHRC veteran competitors Danelle and “Magic” enjoy competing in O.H.I.O EXCA events and versatility competitions. Together, they’ve earned multiple year-end championships in stock horse events and are leading the buckle series in O.H.I.O EXCA for the intermediate and non-pro divisions. The pair also won the 2019 Massachusetts Versatile Horse and Rider Competition. When he’s not competing, Magic spends his days teaching Danelle’s kids how to ride.
Horse: Takota, 17-year-old Mustang gelding
Geoff Goodson is a certified journeyman farrier as well as the owner-operator of Geoff Goodson Horsemanship and Double G Farm. Geoff has been working with “Taco,” an unbranded mustang gelding, for more than ten years. Taco is an accomplished all-around horse, with experience in obstacles, Western dressage, trail riding, and winter skijoring. Geoff will also be competing in the VHRC aboard Stella, another mustang; you can learn more about Geoff and Stella in Part 3 of this series.
Don’t miss the excitement! Admission to the Versatile Horse & Rider Competition is included with every general admission ticket to Equine Affaire. The competition will be held in the Coliseum at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, Massachusetts, on Friday, November 12, 2021, from 1:00-5:00pm EST. For more information, visit https://equineaffaire.com/events/massachusetts/mass-participate/mass-compete/mass-versatile-horse-rider-competition/.