Skip to content

ASHA/AMHA Trainers' Equitation Update From ASHA President Bob Funkhouser



I am pleased to report that the ASHA/AMHA Trainers’ Equitation Cup continues to gain momentum and be a major source of FUN at the horse shows that have already held the event. This year, UPHA Chapter 14, UPHA Chapter 5, Rock Creek, and Midwest have all had extremely successful Trainers’ Equitation Cups with approximately 20 riders in each of the four classes. It has been so much fun watching the pre-show hype that went into those three classes and then the classes living up to the hype.

It has also been refreshing to have so many people excited about being at the horse shows and participating, whether as a rider, coach, donor, or spectator. Since we have moved from a ‘trainer industry’ to an ‘amateur/junior exhibitor industry’ it has been a long time since we’ve seen so many of our heroes in the ring at the same time, competing head to head. Even though many of these professionals were not former equitation stars, they have all gone the extra mile to be equitation ready and they have brought that same intensity to this series of classes as they would a championship performance class at Louisville.          

In addition to the life this class has pumped into horse shows it has also done well as a fundraiser. People have generously supported the professionals by donating to this program and the upcoming class at Midwest Charity already has more pledged than the any of the three previous classes, which were all very successful. Who knows where it will go from here?          

As a reminder, 50 percent of the proceeds raised by Saddlebred riders go to the host horse show and 50 percent goes to the ASHA, which is using their 50 percent to greatly support the upcoming Super Convention and the Association’s Marketing Committee. I am very proud of the work Michelle Partridge and Bill Whitley have done to create and implement this program.

When Tandy Patrick, Bret Day and I first joined the Board some five years ago the Association had a $200 budget for Marketing and this did not support the Mission Statement which reads: “The mission of the American Saddlebred Horse Association is to promote, improve and protect the grace, intelligence and versatility of the American Saddlebred, and to provide programs and services supporting our members, while fostering public awareness.” Two hundred dollars would not begin to get the job done!  

Starting with immediate past President Tandy Patrick, Marketing turned into a focus of the Association and we have continued down that path. Thanks to Executive Director Bill Whitley and the entire staff for all of their hard work, we now have $55,000 budgeted for Marketing this year and we were able to do that because of the Trainers’ Equitation Cup. A PR program with specialist Ray Drasnin is already underway so these funds will see immediate usage for promoting the American Saddlebred in a number of different uses across the nation.

More Stories

  • Latest Issue 7 15 19

    Read More
  • Response to the July 9, 2019 USA Today Article by: Brent Schrotenboer

    On July 9, 2019 in a USA Today article by Brent Schrotenboer, references were made to individuals in the equestrian industry who questioned the procedures, requirements and desirability of SafeSport, the federally authorized independent non-profit organization committed to ending all forms of abuse in sport applicable to those members of national governing bodies of Olympic sport and Paralympic sports organizations.  Read More
  • It's Not Too Late: Be A Part of the UPHA Ribbons of Service

    The United Professional Horsemen's Association (UPHA) would like to extend an invitation to its actively showing members aged 21 & Under to become a part of the UPHA Ribbons of Service Program. The United Professional Horsemen's Association Ribbons of Service program seeks to impart on its members, aged 21 & under, the importance of community service... Read More
  • ASHA's Response to USA Today Article

    Today, USA Today published an article about the equestrian community's response to the Safe Sport Act and enforcement efforts by the U.S. Center for SafeSport. The American Saddlebred industry was referenced many times in this article... Read More
  • ASHA Meets with Lawmakers on Safe Sport

    ASHA leaders last week met with lawmakers as part of our organization’s commitment to the safety of our youth, and to address concerns about the U.S. Center for SafeSport... Read More
  • UPHA Members: Pick Up Your Riding Program Playbook Today!

    The United Professional Horsemen's Association is pleased to announce the release of its new Riding Program Playbook. This playbook contains an array of information regarding starting a riding program, attracting students, safety, academy competition, creating horse owners, and good business tactics. Read More
  • Latest Issue 7 8 19

    Read More
  • ASHA Youth Luncheon

    The American Saddlebred Horse Association is pleased to announce this years’ ASHA Youth Luncheon sponsored by Elisabeth Goth during the Lexington Junior League Horse Show. The luncheon will be Thursday, July 11 at the American Saddlebred Museum, immediately following the last class of the morning session... Read More
  • Morgan Weanling Gala Announces 2019 Judges

    We are excited and pleased to announce the judging panel for the 2019 Morgan Weanling Gala to be held Friday, August 30 in Shipshewana, Indiana during the Jubilee Regional Championship Horse Show... Read More
  • USEF Drugs & Medication Guidelines

    USEF recently updated its online Drugs & Medications Guidelines. Representatives of the Joint Leadership Council have been working with USEF to make modifications to these guidelines that ensure the welfare and safety of our horses and athletes... Read More