October 1 – 3, 2021 ~ Temecula, CA

Ranch Classes

Wine Country Classic Horse Show

Ranch Classes 

Ranch classes are sanctioned by West Coast Ranch Horse and points will be awarded for their program.   We will offer Ranch Riding, Ranch Rail, and Ranch Conformation Classes.   All definitions and explanations below are courtesy of West Coast Ranch Horse.  

Ranch Riding

Ranch Riding , sometimes referred to as Ranch Pleasure, is a relatively new pattern class , where the riding style is smooth and efficient as if the horse and rider are working on a ranch. Ranch Riding typically consists of standard patterns as published by breed and other associations. As Ranch Riding continues to become more and more popular,  new patterns are being added that include more challenging maneuvers and obstacles to test the skill and versatility of horse and rider.

Ranch Rail

Ranch Rail, sometimes called Ranch Rail Pleasure, is a relatively new rail class whereby horse and rider work at more natural and forward gaits which are commonly used in ranch work. This class encourages a natural headset and extended gaits are often called for such as an extended walk, trot and lope. In this class, the judge(s) are looking for horses that have ground covering gaits that would be a good mount for a day working on the ranch.

Ranch Conformation

Ranch Conformation is also sometimes referred to as Ranch Halter.  The purpose of this class is to preserve the Ranch Horse type by selecting well-mannered horses in the order of their resemblance to the breed ideal. Judges look for a combination of balance, structural correctness, and movement with appropriate breed/sex characteristics and adequate muscling.

Ranch Class Rules

West Coast Ranch Horse follows the rules set forth by AQHA for Ranch classes.  

AQHA rulebook states:

SHW334 GAITS – RANCH CLASSES. In all gaits, movement of the ranch horse should simulate a horse needing to cover long distances, softly and quietly, like that of a working ranch horse. The following terminology shall apply:

SHW334.1 Walk – the walk is a natural, flat footed, four-beat gait. The gait is rhythmic and ground-covering. As in all gaits, the horse should display a level, or slightly above level topline with a bright, attentive expression.

SHW334.2 Extended Walk – the extended walk is an obvious lengthening of stride that will naturally increase the pace. The horse should move in a natural manner (not a running walk) as if it were moving across an open pasture.

SHW334.3 Trot- the trot is a natural two-beat gait demon- strating more forward motion than the western jog. SHW334.4 Extended Trot- the extended trot is an obvious lengthening of the stride with a definite increase in pace. The horse should be moving in a manner as if it were covering a large area on a ranch with an above level topline.

SHW334.5 Lope- the lope is a three-beat gait. The lope should be relaxed and smooth with a natural, forward moving stride. SHW334.6 Extended Lope- the extended lope is not a run or a race but should be an obvious lengthening of the stride, dem- onstrating a forward, working speed. The horse should display an above level topline with a bright, attentive expression.

SHW417.3 The overall cadence and performance of the gaits should be as those described in GAITS, (SHW334 Ranch Riding) with an emphasis on forward movement, free-flowing, and ground covering for all gaits. Transitions should be performed where designated, with smoothness and responsiveness.

SHW417.4 No time limit.

SHW417.6 Posting at the extended trot is acceptable.

SHW417.7 Touching or holding the saddle horn is acceptable.

SHW418. Ranch Riding Apparel and Equipment

SHW418.1 No hoof polish.

SHW418.2 No braided or banded manes/tails or tail extensions. SHW418.3 Trimming inside ears is discouraged.

SHW418.4 Trimming bridle path is allowed, also trimming of fetlocks or excessive (long) facial hair.

SHW418.5 Equipment with silver should not count over a good working outfit. Excessive silver on bridles and saddles is discouraged.

SHW418.6 It is suggested competitors use a breast collar and a rear cinch.

SHW418.7 When exhibiting in a snaffle bit or hackamore, an exhibitor may switch between two hands and one hand on the reins at any time.

Ranch Classes Offered

RR – RCA – Ranch Conformation Amateur

RR – RCO – Ranch Conformation Open

RR – RCY – Ranch Conformation Youth

RR – RRLA – Ranch Rail – Amateur

RR – RRLG – Ranch Rail – Green

RR – RRLO – Ranch Rail – Open

RR – RRLY – Ranch Rail – Youth

RR – RRA – Ranch Riding Amateur

RR – RRG – Ranch Riding Green

RR – RRO – Ranch Riding Open

RR – RRY – Ranch Riding Youth