The first trip through the Gateway of Champions in Oklahoma City for the AQHA World Show can be a nerve-wracking one. This iconic event draws top AQHA competitors from around the world to showcase their talent and passion. Amidst the whirlwind of competition, seasoned AQHA World Show veterans offer invaluable advice to newcomers, guiding them through the exhilarating yet nerve-wracking experience. From AQHA Director of Competition Scott Neuman’s insights on show logistics to the seasoned wisdom of professionals like Kelley Wainscott and Ashley Dunbar-Clock–as well as the perspective of AQHA Amateur Caroline Cavallo–keep reading for great advice on making the most of your trip to the AQHA World Show.
Scott Neuman, currently serving as the Director of Competition for AQHA, boasts a rich history with the AQHA World Show. He first stepped through the Gateway of Champions in 1991, not as a director but as a competitor. Over the years, he has frequented Oklahoma City numerous times, donning various hats as both a competitor and a judge.
Reflecting on the evolution of the event, Neuman remarked, “From the first time I attended a World Show in 1991 to now, there have been many, many changes.” He added, “If you were to put those two world shows side by side now, they probably don’t look very much the same at all. Today, we have so many more classes, and so many more divisions.” Indeed, the contemporary AQHA World Show is marked by an extensive range of classes and divisions, complemented by cutting-edge features such as live streaming, digital scoring systems, and real-time results tabulations.
As attendees may have already observed, the 2023 AQHA World Show introduces significant alterations. Neuman explains, “I think the lion’s share of the changes you’re seeing at the World Show this year were born out of people expressing their concern that these things weren’t happening. It wasn’t the brainchild of some brilliant person at all. It was simply listening to the pulse of what’s going on. Listening to them directly and responding.”