2022 NRHA Czech Derby Dominated by Mare Power

2022 NRHA Czech Derby Dominated by Mare Power Photos by International Horse Press
July 31, 2022

Kozlovice, Czech Rep., July 30—During the last weekend of July, NRHA Czech riders met at the Smart Ranch in Kozlovice, Czech Republic, to compete in the NRHA Czech Derby. The Derby classes were open to 5- to 10-year-old horses and NRHA Czech offered Derby classes in Levels (L)4 and 2 in both Open and Non Pro.

The rainy weather on Saturday did not discourage the riders from performing to the highest level and the crowd saw nine horse-rider combinations in the Open Derby and 16 in the Non Pro Derby perform.

It was Polish NRHA Professional Rafał Dolata who flew in the arena halfway through the Open Derby class to score 72.5 aboard Anna Ciechańska’s mare CSG Blossomsailon (Colonels Shining Gun x Hp Pebbles Sail On) to win the 2022 NRHA Czech L4 and 2 Open Derby Championships.

Having the mare in training for only two months, Dolata was very happy with the outcome of their first show together. “This mare is a nice project, she is very talented. She can turn big, stop huge and I was very pleased with her today. I plan to take her to a schooling show next and then get her ready for the Polish Derby."

Dolata thanked his sponsors and his customers, all the fans and everyone at the NRHA Czech show who supported him during the weekend. He enjoyed the show and plans to return in the future. “We really love it here. It is only 220 kilometers from our place, which is very convenient for us, so I hope we can come back again. I appreciate the level of the competition, which is bigger every time. We go around Europe, so I see the level of competition of non pro and open riders, and I can tell that Polish, Czech and Slovak riders are getting better and placing higher in competitions everywhere.”

Tomáš Martinek and CS Magnus (NRHA Eight Million Dollar Sire Magnum Chic Dream x Miss Stepping Gun), owned by Petr Julina, finished Reserve Champions with a score of 71.

Czech Pavel Slabík rode his homebred mare Tiffanysgun (Colonels Shining Gun x Shine On Princess) to a score of 71 to top the 2022 NRHA Czech Level 4 and 2 Non Pro Derby.

“I had a great time on my mare today. We raised this mare since she was a baby, and I have always liked her. Our trainer Miroslav 'Mirko' Baniari does a great job with our horses. He showed her earlier and I could feel that she was ready for me. We started carefully with the run in and stop, and after that I felt confident because she felt so good: Especially my right circles felt fantastic,” said thrilled Slabík who plans to take the mare to the Polish Derby next. “I still have some things to improve on my part and she is not an easy horse to ride, but she is very athletic and talented. She rode well with her trainer and now we have our first show season together and are trying to click, which today it worked out perfectly, so I am really happy.”

Slabík was also pleased with the outcome of the show. “NRHA Czech does a great job in running the shows for the riders. Since all the members of the management compete themselves, they know what needs to be done and try to listen to other riders. The classes are scheduled in good order, so we can train our horses before we show them. There are also side activities for youth riders, and the show overall is a good, mid-size competition, so even though there are no big prizes, it is a lot of fun for everyone. I certainly enjoyed it,” added Slabík.

Barbora Julinová and LV Pistol Great Pine (Custom Rooster x Majors Queen Mary) scored 70.5 to finish Reserve Champions in L4 and also tied for the Reserve Championship in L2 together with Alicja Hunek and BH Lightup Hollywood (Lean With Hollywood x Lights Broadway BH).

Youth gather for an ice cream social

Youth competitors met in the early afternoon for an ice cream social sponsored by Holly Ranch. The informal meeting was led by NRHA European Youth Council Historian Sára Karasová, who was one of NRHA Czech representatives competing at the NRHA European Affiliate Championships in Givrins, Switzerland earlier this month, bringing home the NRHA EA Limited Non Pro Championship.

Karasová mentioned not only her recent experience from Switzerland, but also described the purpose of the European Youth Council and encouraged all the attending youth to participate at NRHA shows around Europe, as well as the European Affiliate Championships, hoping the Czech representation would be even higher next year.

NRHA Czech excels at the 2022 SVAG NRHA European Affiliate Championships

Czech team at EAC (Photo courtesy of NRHA Czech)


Jonáš Bujnoch, NRHA Czech Sports Manager, was very happy with the turnout of the NRHA Czech members at the 2022 SVAG NRHA European Championship (EAC).

“The turnout of the show for our riders exceeded my expectations by far and I am very happy with the outcome. All NRHA Czech representatives did great at the EAC, but few really excelled, such as Sára Karasová, who won the EAC Limited Non Pro, her sister Thea Karasová, who finished second in EAC Youth 14-18, and Barbora Julinová, who finished third in EAC Rookie. We had multiple Top 5 finishes and overall it was a huge success for us as an affiliate.”

Bujnoch continued; “For all of us it was also a great experience to see a show like this. The show environment, the conditions for both riders and horses, everything worked really well.” According to Bujnoch, the plan for the future of NRHA Czech is to improve the level of reining locally so Czech riders can compete on even higher level and more riders compete internationally.

“This year we had 10 horses at the EAC and our riders placed well also in the NRHA ancillary classes. To mention a few: Vladimír Čejka winning the Novice Horse Non-Pro, Thea Karasová winning the Limited Non Pro and finishing second in Intermediate Non Pro, Sára Karasová finishing second in Youth 14-18, and myself ending up Reserve Champion in Novice Horse Open“.

Bujnoch also added that NRHA Czech is becoming a well-respected NRHA affiliate. “Other riders, especially from Poland and Slovakia, who are NRHA Czech members, qualified for the EAC at our shows, so it was great to also watch these riders do well at the EAC and accomplish good results. That means we are heading in the right direction with our affiliate.”

By International Horse Press Release