The American Quarter Horse established a bold reputation as the greatest cattle roundup and trail driving horse in history and would never be forgotten by early American racing enthusiasts. To ensure the unique qualities of this breed did not perish, a group of American Quarter Horse enthusiasts met in 1940 in Ft. Worth, Texas, to establish what was to become the largest equine breed registry in the world, the American Quarter Horse Association.
Houston draws its share of the 4.4 million total registered Quarter Horses to compete in Halter, where the horse’s body condition, fitness, confirmation and overall health is judged; English, where the desired traits of a Hunter-type horse are judged; and Western, which encompasses the traits desired in a Trail, Cutting, or Western Pleasure-type horse. The Quarter Horse is the desired horse to compete on in associations such as the National Cutting Horse Association and the National Reined Cowhorse Association for its athleticism and intelligence.
Youth classes are among the largest in entries and are broken into three age divisions: Novice Youth, Intermediate Youth and Open Youth. High Point horse and rider awards are given in each division. In the past, awards have included saddles, laptops, horse blankets, halters and saddle pads for all divisions.