When entering American Quarter Horse Association classes, exhibitors are required to provide proof of their level eligibility to show management. Exhibitors can print their level eligibility or save a digital copy on their phone for presenting to show management during the 2020 show season. To determine level eligibility for 2020, visit www.aqha.com/aqha-leveling-program 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.
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.
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. Find specific level related guidelines within the AQHA official handbook, beginning with SHW245.
Classes leveled by exhibitor record: youth, amateur, Select amateur and open halter, and cattle classes. Search for level eligibility for those classes by exhibitor membership ID.
Classes leveled by horse record: open classes (excluding halter and cattle events). Search by a horse’s registration number to determine its eligibility.
“AQHA levels are designed to group horses and riders of similar experience,” said Justin Billings, AQHA chief show officer. “Leveling adds value for the exhibitor and encourages more participation at AQHA competitions.”
Visit www.aqha.com/aqha-leveling-program to use the level verification system. The online system will show you the levels you and your American Quarter Horse are eligible for in 2020.
For exhibitors looking to compete in Level 1 amateur and youth classes, a Level 1 eligibility application must be filed and updated each year. 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.
New for 2020, Rookie exhibitors will be allowed an extra look-back year of eligibility when competing at the AQHA Level 1 Championships. AQHA rookie eligibility will be based off the previous year’s points and earnings, similar to Level 1 eligibility at these shows. This applies only to the Level 1 Championships.
If assistance is needed in verifying level eligibility, the AQHA Show Department is available to help at 806-378-5083 or use the Contact Us form.
AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHAnews on Twitter and visit www.aqha.com/news.