NRHA Grand Prix Champions and The Run For A Million European Non Pro and Youth qualifiers determined

November 5, 2023

Lyon, November 5 — Sunday at the $305,595-added NRHA European Derby held during the 20th edition of Equita Lyon, hosted the NRHA Non Pro Gran Prix action as well as the Non Pro and Youth 2024 The Run For A Million (TRFAM) qualifiers. The morning started with the Euro 7.000-added Roleski Ranch Non Pro and theTRFAM Non Pro 2024 Million Dollar Competition qualifier. On home turf, Alexandre Giarratano claimed the only available Non Pro spot in the European qualifier for the Million Dollar Competition in Las Vegas next year. Giarratano rode his The Electric Bandit (Dont Miss My Guns x Electra Stop Ruff) to a 218 score.

“My horse was awesome today. I tried to prepare him for this show because this is a big event, and it worked out,” said Giarratano who rides under the guidance of NRHA Professional Jeffrey Touroute-Thomas. “I have my horse at home now, but Jeff trained him and still coaches us at shows. The main goal for us was to compete in the European Non Pro Derby. We made the L4, 3, and 2 Finals and finished in the Top 10 in all three levels.”

Success did not stop there: Giarratano endered the 5-year-old stallion in the Roleski Ranch Non Pro and TRFAM qualifier and the team is now set to compete in Las Vegas. “I am going to go for sure,” said Giarratano. “We will see if NRHA France can step in and assist with some of the costs to take my horse there, which I would really like, because he is so talented and capable of doing well in this event. Considering the costs, I may have to end up borrowing a horse in the U.S.”

Second place, with a score of 215.5, went to Switzerland’s Adrienne Speidel who rode her mare Wimpysshortstride BB (NRHA Twelve Million Dollar Sire Wimpys Little Step x Short Rooster) to a score of 215.5.

The AM Rising Star Ranch Euro 460-added NRHA Limited Non Pro Grand Prix saw French rider Tony Perozeni take the win aboard Michel Pouzol’s stallion Tricky Vobinda Whiz (CJ Whiz x RS Cayenne Jack) scoring 212 for their run. Verena Rigott of Italy was just a point short with her stallion Great Gotta Whiz (NRHA Five Million Dollar Sire Spooks Gotta Whiz x Shirleys Cashin In) occupying second place.

Open Grand Prix Action

It was a win for Lukasz Czechowicz riding Katarzyna Roleska’s CSG Wisemanfear in the Euro 10.000-added Euro Horse NRHA Open Grand Prix. The Polish head trainer at Roleski Ranch performed a clean and powerful pattern riding the 5-year-old stallion by NRHA Million Dollar Stallion Colonels Shining Gun out of Tejana Chic, owned by Roleska, closing with a 225 score. “Last night didn’t quite go as well as we expected, but I am so happy for my friend Dominik [Reminder] who won both the Open Derby and the chance to go to Vegas. He really deserves it,” he said. “Today I showed ‘Wiseman’ and [CSG] Piggiemove again trying to be cleaner and they were so nice…they are so great minded! After showing them hard last night in the finals with a lot of speed and pressure, coming back being so quiet and showing so well today shows what phenomenal horses they are. They will now go home, and I will go to Cremona with my 3-year-olds for the IRHA Futurity.” With Wiseman taking the win and CSG Piggiemove, a 9-year-old gelding by Colonels Shining Gun out of Roosters Hot Piq — also owned by Roleska — taking third place with a 220.5 score, the pause is well-deserved. His two mounts will however be showing one more time before the year ends in Veneto, Italy, where a big Open Trophy Class will be offered. Czechowicz shared that the goal is to run for the 2023 NRHA Open World Championship with ‘Piggiemove.’

Riding to second place in the Open and winning the 5.000 EUR-added Greystone Ranch Intermediate Open Grand Prix was Anne Grether riding RS Reining Horses BV’s TR Voodoo Doll. The 5-year-old mare by Shiners Voodoo Dr and out Wallawhizagun rode Grether to a 221.5 score. Closing in second place was Anders Josefsson who performed to a 219.5 with Gotta Shiney Whiz (NRHA Five Million Dollar Sire Spooks Gotta Whiz x Cee Bee Shine), owned by Annemanna AB, under the saddle. 

Youth Grand Prix Action:

Lavinia Padrini stepped in the pen aboard her mare Discoinferno 66 (NRHA Two Million Dollar Sire Inferno Sixty Six x ARC Joy Surprise). The duo performed a steady run awarded a 214 by the judges to win the NRHA Youth 14-18 sponsored by NRHA France as well the Youth spot in the TRFAM Youth Championship 2024 qualifier.

“I’ve had this mare since she was 2 years old and she’s been with me for three years now. In the beginning it wasn’t easy, but today in the arena she was with me the whole time, listened to me, was fantastic and we were finally able to show off her potential,” said the Italian youth rider. “We entered the European Non Pro Derby but unfortunately didn’t make the Finals so we decided to opt for a last minute entry today and I would say it was a great choice. I’m also very happy about the TRFAM qualifier win and I really can’t wait to go to Vegas!”

Second place in the Youth 14-18 with a 206.5 score was for Joana Sequeira of France with her gelding (Smart Furys Remedy x Loves Lealeta Dream).

Last in the Youth 13 & Under Grand Prix draw, France’s Chjara Maria Gaffory performed a solid run paid back by the judges with a 207.5 score aboard Zag Candy Step (NRHA Twelve Million Dollar Sire Wimpys Little Step x RS Candy O Lena), a gelding owned by Pierre-Toussaint Gaffory.  French rider Toscane Menassa finished second — two points behind —with her mare Juice Lili Whiz (JD Colonel Whiz x Peppy Lil Joke).

For further information and full results: /

Photos by Wanted Photo

Thank you to the 2023 NRHA European Derby Sponsors:

  • GL Events and Equita Lyon
  • NRHA Global Partners Markel Equine (Official Insurance Partner of NRHA), MS Diamonds TX (Official Diamond Partner of NRHA), Toyon Ranch, Clark’s Pump-N-Shop, Cardinal Reining Horses
  • The Run For A Million
  • LL Tecnologie
  • Quarter Dream
  • Roleski Ranch
  • Grey Stone Ranch
  • AM Rising Star Ranch
  • Gunna Sparkle
  • Nice
  • APHA Chrome Cash Incentive Program

NRHA European Derby Media Contact:
Simona Diale / International Horse Press
Cell: +39 340 5354629