By: Brittany Bevis
The Leading Owner award at the AQHA World Championship Show is not something that anyone truly sets out to win. This is primarily because of the enormity and complexity of the show itself. Most exhibitors at the event have one or two horses they plan to compete with. In order to even be in the running for the Leading Owner Award, you must have a number of horses in your show string, and not just any horses, but exceptional ones capable of winning the top prize.
Winning the Leading Owner Award is a prestigious designation, one that many consider to be a once-in-a-lifetime achievement, so to accomplish the feat two years in a row… well that’s just unimaginable. However, that’s exactly what happened this year when Dan Fox was named the Leading Owner for 2021.
“It’s very competitive, and I was fortunate to be able to win for the second time,” Dan says. “This is attributed to having great trainers, great horses, and a very accomplished daughter, Katie, who shows in the amateur division. Katie won Ranch Trail and was Reserve and 4th in Ranch Riding.”
In addition to the diversification that Katie provided by competing in Western Performance events, both members of the Fox family excelled in the Halter discipline with a variety of horses, which was the secret to their success last year. They earned 149 points with 15 horses during the show. The Reserve Leading Owner Award this year went to Josh Weakly, who earned 122 points with his nine horses. A few of Josh’s wins included Amateur 2-Year-Old Mares with FF Rumerz Has It, Amateur Weanling Colts with Hippiesandkowboys, and Amateur 3-Year-Old Geldings with Tattle Tailz.
During the show, Dan was named the World Champion in Select Aged Geldings with Solair, Select Aged Stallions with CR Peacemaker, and Select Yearling Stallions with Wyatt Earp. He showed Magnificense in Select 3-Year-Old Mares and Romeiro in Amateur Aged Stallions and placed Reserve with both. Katie led CR Peacemaker to win Amateur Aged Stallions.
“All three wins are special in their own right,” he says. “It’s extremely hard to win at this level. Repeating wins with Solair, now a ten-time World Champion, and CR Peacemaker, a six-time World Champion, is extremely rewarding.”
“It’s impossible to pick just one favorite,” Dan continues. “They’re all special. Having FR Night Lyfe win in Performance Halter Mares and FR Last Edition in Performance Halter Stallions were icing on the cake. Both are a product of Fox Creek Ranch’s breeding program.”
Looking towards the future, Dan is very excited about 14 foals that will hit the ground by CR Peacemaker in 2022. Popeye, by CR Peacemaker, was a Reserve World Champion from the stallion’s first foal crop. Even more exciting, all of the 2022 foals by CR Peacemaker will be at Dan’s new ranch in Weatherford, Texas.
“I would like to thank John Shepard, Luke Castle, Marty Simper, Tom Robertson, and all of their staff for having all the horses fit at world class level. I would also like to thank AQHA staff and the AQHA Executive Committee for an awesome job putting on all three World shows. I would also like to thank the judges for a great job judging the horse show!”
Click here to read Makings of a Leading Owner- 2020 when Dan Fox was named the Leading Owner and Warren English was named the Reserve Leading Owner.