The National Reined Cow Horse Association Merit Award program was created to recognize elite equine athletes that steadily succeed throughout their reined cow horse show career. Merit awards are determined by the horse’s NRCHA lifetime earnings – whether win checks are earned at regional or national level shows. The current Merit Award levels are: Certificate of Ability, Superior Cow Horse Award and Supreme Reined Cow Horse. Earnings won in the Limited or “boxing” classes are only applicable for the Certificate of Ability level.
The NRCHA Board appreciates and recognizes the value Limited horses and riders contribute to the Association, and in return, have added a new award to the long-standing program. Starting in 2019, Non Pro Limited and Youth Limited riders can apply for the Non Pro Limited Achievement Award, a new level of recognition specifically designed for horses that excel in the Limited or “boxing” classes.
- The horse must have earned a minimum $15,000
- The horse must have earned a minimum of $1,000 in Limited Aged Events, such as Derbies or Futurities. This money can be earned in either fence class or boxing classes.
- A minimum of $10,000 must be earned in Horse Show Category 1 Limited or “boxing” classes, including monies earned in the Select and 13 and Under divisions.
- Monies earned in Category 2 classes will not count towards the award
Non Pro Limited Achievement Award recipients will receive a 16” x 20” custom wood plaque that includes a picture of their choice, the achievement certificate and NRCHA logo. All Merit Awards are presented at the NRCHA Year-End Banquet, held during the Celebration of Champions show in February.
To apply for the Merit Award Program, complete the application and submit a one-time application fee of $50.00 to the NRCHA Office by November 15 of the award year. All applicants are eligible for all levels of the Merit Award Program upon completion of each requirement. The NRCHA office calculates the applied horse’s show records and automatically processes the awards when each level is achieved.
For many reined cow horse owners and riders, achieving Merit status is an honor to be treasured. Receiving an NRCHA Merit Award is a true testament of a horse’s consistent performance through all phases of traditional Vaquero training.
For more information about the NRCHA Merit Award Program go https://nrcha.com/nrcha-merit-awards-program/.