California Riding Magazine • July, 2014

Western States Horse Expo
Full weekend of horse power, prize money and family fun in Northern California.


Show producer Miki Nelsen and Sacramento Vice Mayor Jay Schenirer made their entrance in a horse drawn carriage as Western Staes Horse Expo presented with a special proclamation naming June 9-13, 2014 Western States Horse Expo Week in the City of Sacramento. Miki Nelson gave the City of Sacramento a special gift from the Expo. Photo courtesy of Kathy Higgins

The nation's largest and most comprehensive horse expo, Western States Horse Exp®, was held on June 13-15 at the Cal Expo Fairgrounds in Sacramento. This three-day equine extravaganza offered action packed competitions with cash prizes, a horse sale, live demos and lectures and loads of fun for horse enthusiasts of all ages. 

Now in its 16th year, Western States Horse Expo brought together record crowds from Northern California and around the country. With 140,000 square feet of indoor space and 18 acres of outdoor grounds, this event offered something for every horse lover in the family. Special themed areas included the University, Breed Revelation, Up Close and Personal (Q and A sessions), Young Rider Park, Trail Symposium, Book Corral and Great American Truck Display. Live entertainment was provided daily in the Food Court by Nashville based singer/songwriter, Templeton Thompson.

The exhibit floor was housed in four buildings and offered a huge assortment of horse and ranch products and services featuring special show discounts as well as tons of free samples to take home. Major exhibitors such as Dale Chavez Co., Thrifty Horse, River Valley Feed, Sheldon Feed & Supply and Australian Connection set up mini-storefronts.


Over 150 horse trailers were on display and available for purchase by Sundowner of California, Trails West, FeatherLite, and Keifer as well as state of the art European-style trailers by Equi-Trek. Attendees received tons of tips from clinician favorites Bob Avila (Million Dollar Rider), Gina Miles (Olympic Silver Medalist, Pan American Gold and Bronze, Three Day Event), Richard Winters (World Reining Cowhorse Champion and A level judge), Eitan Beth-Halachmy (Father of Cowboy Dressage), Kalley Krickeberg (specialist in young horses, problem horses and liberty training techniques) and many more. Plus, Tom Mayes (Integrated Equine Therapies), Max Wilcox DVM (Equine veterinarian and surgeon) and Kori Lyn Angers (sports personal trainer and fitness educator) provided invaluable health and fitness tips for the horse and rider.

Miki Nelsen, President of Horse Expo Events, stated, "We are thrilled with the growth and enthusiasm for our event in Sacramento this year as we focused on broadening the Expo to capture new aspects of the horse industry. It is our goal to provide a full weekend of information from the best equine minds in the industry and to offer an enjoyable weekend for the entire family."


Gina Miles, the Olympic Silver Medalist and Pan American Gold and Bronze for Three Day Event, gave valuable pointers to demonstration participants during the Western States Horse Expo.

On the opening night of the Expo, the Magnificent Seven All Around Stock Horse Championship returned with official judges Doug Ingersoll and Richard Winters. This exciting event brought together top horseman from all over the U.S. and Canada to compete in a night of reining, cutting, roping and fence work with $25,000 in prize money awarded to the top seven contestants.

Final order of finishers for the Magnificent Seven event included:
1st Place – Justin Wright on Little Brown Indian (owned by Wyatt Fisher)
2nd/3rd Place – Bob Avila on Not My Day Job (owned by Bob & Dana Avila)
2nd/3rd Place – Jaton Lord on Pepto Smart Style (owned by Jaleen Bruce/Carolyn Hunt)

Also on opening night, a special ceremony was held in the arena to celebrate the 16th anniversary of the Western States Horse Expo. Show producer Miki Nelsen and Sacramento Vice Mayor Jay Schenirer made their entrance in a horse drawn carriage. Schenirer then presented Nelsen with a special proclamation naming June 9-13, 2014 Western States Horse Expo Week in the City of Sacramento.

A returning crowd pleaser of the Western States Horse Expo weekend was The Ultimate Super Horse Challenge. This event offered attendees with their horses or mules a chance to win big prizes and bragging rights that included a trip for two to the Hawaii Horse Expo! Official Judges included Richard Winters, Eitan Beth-Halachmy, Kerry Kuhn, Kalley Krickeberg and Steve Bauhr.


Gina Miles, the Olympic Silver Medalist and Pan American Gold and Bronze for Three Day Event, stops to be interviewed by Good Day Sacramento TV.

Top finishers won a purse totaling over $5,000 in cash and prizes and included:

1st Place - Robin Bond, on KaChoo (owned by Shoemaker & Eddleman, San Marcos, CA)
Reserve Champion – Jodie Child on champion Whiz N Chex Tex (owned by Jodi Childs, Vista, CA)
3rd Place – Sherry Oncale, on Tuff Rockin Tivo, (owned by Sherry Oncale, Willits, CA)
4th Place – Danika Fleming, on Playboy with Intent, (owned by Danika Fleming, Woodlands, CA)
5th Place – Sandy Smyth on Mark Dee Spot "Levi", (owned by Kevin and Tami Eck, Marysville, CA)
The Equine Dream Art Show and Sale provided an ideal environment for emerging and established artists to display and sell their works. Best in Show winner for Sacramento 2014 was the Pastel, "Fjord Power Stroke" by Stephanie Rose Long, from Fallon, NV.

Sponsors included: RAM Trucks, Farnam, Platinum Performance, Smartpak, Pyranha, and West Coast Equine Foundation. Media sponsors include Western Horseman, California Horsetrader, Horsetrader.com and Young Rider Magazine.

Next year's Western States Horse Expo is scheduled for June 12-14, 2015.

Press release provided by Western States Horse Expo. For more information call 800-352-2411 or visit www.horseexpoevents.com.