OKLAHOMA CITY, Okla. – Auburn rising sophomore Blair McFarlin captured the Collegiate Reining Championships at the 2016 National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Derby Thursday in Oklahoma City, Okla.
McFarlin captured the title with 216.5 points on Boominator, earning a 72.5 and a pair of 72s from the three judges. Her point total bested second-place finisher Kyndall Harper’s 214 and the 212s from Hannah Jechow and Dylan Dombrowski.
“I was so honored to have been selected to compete that it really feels incredible to finish on top,” McFarlin said.
The Franklin, Tenn., product is the second Tiger in program history to capture the competition crown. Lyndsey Jordan won the event in 2009. Other Auburn riders to compete have been Indy Roper (2013) and Stephanie Rucci (2014). Jordan also competed in 2008 and 2010.
“What a fantastic effort by Blair today,” assistant coach Mary Meneely said. “Blair nailed the pattern with skillful and tactical preparation combined with being adjustable in the moment during her completion ride. She set the bar high and it’s a great day for Auburn equestrian. I’m thrilled with Blair’s poise and her performance.”
“Blair continues her winning ways, putting another title under her belt,” head coach Greg Williams added. “She's had an amazing freshman year, and continues to improve under Coach Meneely. Her future is bright. It's a great day for Auburn equestrian, and I want to add thanks to Blair and Coach Meneely for their hard work.”
McFarlin was one of 12 collegiate riders selected to compete in this year’s competition. The three collegiate associations – NRHA, the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association (IHSA), and the National Collegiate Equestrian Association (NCEA) – each selected four for the competition. McFarlin rode as a representative for the NRHA.
The NRHA Derby runs for one week each summer in Oklahoma City and showcases the world's best reining horses in the four to six-year age range. Thousands of spectators, exhibitors, and horses attend the event each year. The Derby is one of two major events presented by the NRHA each year in Oklahoma City.
2016 NRHA COLLEGIATE REINING CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL RESULTS
1. Blair McFarlin, Auburn
2. Kyndall Harper, Georgia
T3. Hannah Jechow, Texas A&M
T3. Dylan Dombrowski, Cazenovia
T5. Kelsey Wilson, West Texas A&M
T5. Holly Phillips, Findlay
T7. Danielle Cohen, Oklahoma State
T7. Taylor Brown, Fresno State
9. Leah Piper, Middle Tennessee State
10. Ebba Lange, Oklahoma State
11. Sarah Yu, Ohio State
12. Chantz Stewart, TCU