Five individuals and seven horses will be inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame during the 2007 AQHA Convention March 2-6 in Houston. The American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame was established in 1975 to honor people and horses instrumental in the development of the breed and the American Quarter Horse Association. Induction into the Hall of Fame is one of the highest honors bestowed by AQHA.
Barbara L, a 1947 bay mare, produced 14 foals of which 11 earned Registers of Merit. Total, Barbara Lís produce earned more than $260,000 on the race track and claimed 52 wins. Considered a blue-hen mare, her name is found in hundreds of racing American Quarter Horse pedigrees.
Goetta was the first undefeated American Quarter Horse to win the All American Futurity. The 1961 mare was the AQHA Champion 2-year-old Filly in 1963 and the AQHA World Champion in 1964. She went on to earn the Champion Aged Mare title in 1965.
Diamonds Sparkle earned points in six AQHA classes, won the AQHA Superhorse title in 1978 and is the National Reining Horse Associationís all-time leading dam of NRHA money-earners. The 1974 palomino mare produced 18 foals that earned more than 2,600 performance points.
Three-time World Champion Expensive Hobby, a 1971 buckskin gelding, is most remembered for his stops and turns in the reining and working cow horse arena with 1996 AQHA Professional Horseman Al Dunning aboard. Expensive Hobby competed in western pleasure, western riding, reining, working cow horse and cutting.
A 1934 brown stallion, Bert was legendary in the roping arena. Bert sired 292 foals, four of which were AQHA Champions. Bertís versatility is illustrated in his foalís records Ė they earned 438 halter points and 545.5 performance points. Twenty-six of Bertís offspring earned Registers of Merit.
Grey Badger II
Grey Badger II, a 1941 gray stallion, was said to have had legs of steel. Many thought of the legendary horse as the gauge against which the fastest 220-yard horses were tried. He sired 250 foals.
A 1984 gray stallion, Chicks Beduino sired more than 2,000 foals and remains a prominent figure in American Quarter Horse racing today. The legendary sireís foals have earned more than $31 million, and include seven AQHA Racing World Champions.
Anne Marion, Fort Worth, Texas
An AQHA life member and Honorary Vice President, Anne Marion has dedicated the majority of her life to the American Quarter Horse industry. Marion is president of the Burnett Foundation and the chair of the Burnett Oil Company and owner of the legendary 6666ís ranch where many of the American Quarter Horse greats, in racing and performance, call home.
Bill Collins, Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Bill Collins began his American Quarter Horse career in 1955 in Alberta, Canada. He instructed cutting horse enthusiasts throughout Canada, Australia, Germany and Great Britain. Among his other achievements, in 1974 Bill founded the cutting competition at the Calgary Stampede. His judging career includes all the major AQHA shows.
D. Wayne Lukas, Los Alamitos, California
Famed Thoroughbred racehorse trainer D. Wayne Lukas began his horse career with American Quarter Horses in 1972 and established himself as a top trainer. He trained numerous AQHA World Champions including Flight 109, Little Blue Sheep, Maskeo Lad and Sheís Precious. In 1978, he shifted his focus to Thoroughbred racing full-time. He has been the dominant trainer in the Breeders' Cup and is the career leader in purse money won, starters and victories. He remains an American Quarter Horse owner today.
J. Marvin Willhite, Holly Colorado
J. Marvin Willhite has spent the past 40 years dedicated to the American Quarter Horse and all it encompasses. Marvin has been involved with every aspect of the industry from breeding, showing and racing to serving on AQHA committees and the AQHA Board of Directors.
J. D. Blondin, Shreveport, Louisiana
J.D. Blondin served as AQHA President in 2001 and has dedicated his life to the American Quarter Horse lifestyle. During his presidency, among many other accomplishments, the Versatility Ranch Horse competition was approved, AQHA improved its Hispanic relations by installing a Spanish phone line, and AQHA held its first-ever trail ride in Central Park in New York City.
These outstanding horses and individuals will join 122 people and 62 horses already inducted into the Hall of Fame.
The concept began in 1975, however the 36,500-square-foot American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame & Museum opened in 1991. Currently under redesign, the Hall of Fame and Museum is scheduled to open in February 2007. It will feature new state-of-the-art technology to exhibit members of the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame and include a timeline of contributions they made to the breed.
For more information on any of the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame inductees, contact the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame and Museum at (806) 378-5000 or visit aqha.com.