Articles: Press Release
Crowd Favorite Craig Schmersal Takes it All on Tidal Wave Jack
at 2005 Adequan/USEF Open Reining Championship
United States Equestrian Federation, Inc.
4047 Iron Works Parkway
Lexington, KY 40511-8483
Tel: (859) 258-2472
Fax (859) 231-6662
Web site: www.usef.org
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 28, 2005
Sarah Lane (859) 225-6974
Lexington, KY - With swift and calculated moves, amazing 360-degree
spins and stop-on-a-dime sliding stops that left an unabashed crowd
going wild, Craig Schmersal and Tidal Wave Jack claimed their landmark
USEF Gold medal and trophy in one fell swoop at the 2005 Adequan/USEF
Open Reining Championship on Saturday, August 27, at the Kentucky Horse
Park in Lexington. Seventh out of 23 entries in the order of go, the
pair set the standard early on in the evening competition-a standard as
it turns out, that simply couldn't be beat. At the end of their run,
Schmersal and his Gold-medal winning partner from the 2002 World
Equestrian Games finished with a final score of 226.
"He's got the best mind of any stud we've had," Schmersal said. "He
keeps showing up time after time after time. He has a heart of gold."
Schmersal said in the middle of their rip-roaring performance, "I knew
he was hooked. I got chills up my spine and I just held on and stayed
tough through the rest of the pattern."
Wife Ginger and 12-year-old son, Chris, watched from the sidelines with
anticipation, rooting their top man on for the win. "When I watched
Craig ride, I thought, 'Yeah, we might have a chance!' The crowd was
with him and I just had that feeling-when you know it's going to
happen," Ginger shared.
The real story of the day comes from the victory that almost didn't
happen, if not for the stroke of insight from Craig. Until this year,
the nine-year-old Tidal Wave Jack had been in retirement, standing at
stud in North Carolina. "He was at the breeding farm all year with Mike
and Natalie McIntyre," Craig said, with a grin spreading across his
face. "I called Mike and said 'Get him ready, I'm going to take him to
Kentucky this year.' Mike said 'okay,' and I told him I expected nothing
less than victory, just kind of kidding. But he delivered for me!"
Last year's FEI World Reining Masters title-holder Todd Crawford was
named Reserve Champion and given the Silver medal in the 2005
Adequan/USEF Open Reining Championship with Commandalena. Crawford, who
arrived the night before the competition, said his horse "gave
everything he had." At the end, he said, "he ran out of gas." Even so,
the pair earned a very respectable 225, a mere point behind Schmersal.
The revered Crawford said he enjoyed his first trip to the Kentucky
Horse Park and the accompanying Championship crowd. "It's always fun to
show in front of a crowd," Crawford said earnestly. "Tonight had a
really good feel to it. I enjoyed being here and I hope to come back
Shawn Flarida and Tinsel Nic rounded out the top three, earning the
Bronze medal with a score of 224.
Tenth-placed Aaron Ralston was the winner of the Don Burt Award, given
to the highest placed rider in the Open Championship who is not ranked
in the top 50 on the USEF Long List.
Results from the 2005 Adequan/USEF Open Reining Championship:
1. Craig Schmersal of Menifee, CA, riding Tidal Wave Jack (1996 Quarter
Horse stallion, owned by Craig and Ginger Schmersal), Score: 226, Prize
2. Todd Crawford of Blanchard, OK, riding Commandalena (1993 Quarter
Horse stallion, owned by Judy Clark), Score: 225, Prize money:
3. Shawn Flarida of Springfield, OH, riding Tinsel Nic (1999 Quarter
Horse stallion, owned by Rosanne Sternberg), Score: 224, Prize money:
4. Tim McQuay of Tioga, TX, riding Custom Red Berry (1996 Quarter Horse
mare, owned by Stone Canyon Ranch), Score: 223, Prize money: $8,258.12
5. Tom McCutcheon of Aubrey, TX, riding Ruf Hearted Jac (1999 Quarter
Horse stallion, owned by Tommy Pierce), Score: 222.5, Prize money:
6T. Casey Hinton of Whitesboro, TX, riding Chex N Sugar (1994 Quarter
Horse gelding, owned by Hampton Deck), Score: 222, Prize money:
6T. Scott McCutcheon of Whitesboro, TX, riding Martha's Mega Jac (1991
Quarter Horse stallion, owned by Scott McCutcheon), Score: 222, Prize
8. Bryant Pace of Smithfield, NC, riding He's One Smart Chic (1995
Quarter Horse stallion, owned by Susan Lomangino), Score: 220, Prize
9. Craig Schmersal of Menifee, CA, riding Vintage Boom (1999 Quarter
Horse gelding, owned by Doug Porcello), Score: 219, Prize money:
10T. Casey Hinton of Whitesboro, TX, riding Bueno Starlight (1996
Quarter Horse stallion, owned by Curtice McCloy), Score: 218.5, Prize
10T. Aaron Ralston of Carbondale, CO, riding Smart Paul Olena (1994
Quarter Horse stallion, owned by Meg Griffith-Ralston), Score: 218.5,
Prize money: $1,445.17
For more information, please contact Sarah Lane, Public Relations
Manager, on (859) 225-6974 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
. USEF press releases can be found on our
website, www.usef.org .