When entering classes at approved American Quarter Horse Association shows, exhibitors are required to provide proof of their level eligibility to show management. Exhibitors can print their level eligibility or save a digital copy for presenting to show management during the 2023 show season.
To determine level eligibility for 2023, visit www.aqha.com/leveling to access the Web-based AQHA leveling verification system within member services. Eligibility is for the entire year (January-December), so exhibitors only need to determine their level once per show season. When inputting an ID or changing ID numbers, select the search button twice to present accurate leveling data.
How AQHA Levels Work
AQHA youth, amateur and open divisions are divided into levels. The levels – Rookie, Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3 – are formulated from an objective handicapping system that assigns exhibitors and horses to competition levels. Point ranges for each level by division can be found here.
Classes are leveled based on exhibitor or horse records. Level eligibility is based on points with AQHA, awards earned with AQHA and other equine associations, and money earned with AQHA, alliance partners and other equine associations that has been disclosed by the exhibitor. Find specific level-related guidelines within the AQHA official handbook, beginning with SHW245.
“AQHA’s goal is to always offer the best experience possible for our showing members, including the opportunity to compete within a level playing field of similarly accomplished exhibitors and horses,” said Karen McCuistion, Interim AQHA Chief Show Officer. “Leveling the playing field helps add value to the AQHA showing experience and encourages more participation at AQHA-approved shows. Exhibitors and horses have the option to compete in levels above their level eligibility, however the system restricts those who are no longer eligible from competing in lower levels.”
Visit www.aqha.com/leveling to use the level verification system. The online system will show you the levels you and your American Quarter Horse are eligible for in 2023. Achievements earned outside of AQHA competition could also affect you and your horse’s eligibility and should be shared with the Association.
For exhibitors looking to compete in Level 1 amateur and youth classes, a Level 1 eligibility application must be filed and updated each year to disclose achievements, including those earned outside of AQHA competition. All Level 1 exhibitors need to complete the Level 1 application and return it to AQHA prior to competing. Previous Level 1 application information on file with AQHA may conflict with current eligibility or alliance partner earnings, which would affect the eligibility being shown on the level verification system. In accordance with SHW252.1, accuracy of eligibility is the responsibility of the exhibitor.
If assistance is needed in verifying level eligibility, the AQHA Show Department is available to help at 806-378-5083 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Central, Monday through Friday, or use the Contact Us form.