A Look Back at the 2020 Quarter Horse Show

The North American Quarter Horse Show ran Oct. 22-26 drawing equine exhibitors from around the country to Louisville to compete in Freedom Hall. William Daryl Yates competed for the first time in one of the new NAILE classes, Equestrians with Disabilities which debuted in 2018.

The Equestrians with Disabilities competition offers equestrians with cognitive and physical challenges the thrill of showing an American Quarter Horse. This class allows everyone to enjoy the rewards of hard work, determination and perseverance. This program allows competitors to show in eight classes and earn points for year-end high-point awards.

Yates showed in the class alongside HES GOLD AKA ANDY. We caught up with Yates to ask about his experience exhibiting at NAILE.

How did you get involved with quarter horse shows?

We got involved with the AQHA when my sister gave up showing beef and we got a horse. We had some friends who were showing horses and once we started showing horses we never left.

What do you learn from showing horses?

I am a vital part of a partnership, a partnership where both the horse and I learn and grow. We are in it together. I get to be around an amazing group of people, people who are supporters to one another and dedicated to the wellbeing of their animals.

What’s your favorite thing about NAILE?

We started coming in the mid-90s with beef cattle. When we started showing quarter horses we came back to NAILE. The atmosphere and people at NAILE are incredible!

How do you prepare to compete?

Lots and lots of hours practicing, grooming, and riding. There’s a lot that goes into showing horses. Far more than hopping on and going around in circles. You have to build a relationship with the horse. Otherwise, it’s not going to perform with you.

What is your favorite thing you’ve done with horses?

Getting to meet new friends and to travel to different states to get to show my horse. Since getting Lopin Lucy we have traveled to different places and competed in several shows and been in the top 5 in my classes and won reserve grand champion horsemanship. This wouldn’t have been possible if it hadn’t been for Elaine Howard graciously donating Lopin Lucy to me and also a big thank you to Margaret Yates for helping us to find a ride at NAILE. If it hadn’t been for her putting out feelers we wouldn’t have met Sharon Ohler and AND HES GOLD AKA Andy. We want to give a big thank you for that. Our first time showing at NAILE was awesome. We placed first place in both of our classes under all of the judges. Looking forward to next year!

The livestock competition at NAILE runs Nov. 3-19 at the Kentucky Exposition Center. For more information, visit https://livestockexpo.org/NAILE-Homepage.html.