20 NRHA TOP TWENTY NON PROS
20 NRHA TOP TWENTY
BY HEATHER LOVERIDGE
Catherine Crandon, Ocala, Florida
REALTOR SPECIALIZING IN HORSE
property in Ocala, Florida’s horse
country, Catherin Crandon’s life
has always included horses. She’s ridden
ever since she can remember and showed
Tennessee Walking Horses in the ‘80s.
Fifteen years ago, when she decided to
do something different, Crandon turned to Reining.
“I started riding with trainer Charlie Smith and just really enjoyed the sport,” Crandon said. “I hauled for and
won a couple World titles
over the years, including the
2010 Novice Horse Non Pro
Level 1 championship.”
Last year Crandon began riding with
NRHA Professional Sam Smith, after
buying Red River Banjo through him.
“I was very successful with Red River
Banjo and actually just sold him after
this year’s NRBC,” she said. “I bought
another horse, Cache Of Jewels, through
Brian Bell this year. We showed for the
first time at the NRBC and it was a
wonderful show for us.
“Brian did such a great job with the
horse; I can’t say enough nice things
Crandon is hoping she will qualify
for the Adequan® North American Affiliate Championships this year and
show at the NRHA Futurity.
“I just love the people
in Reining. I have so
many wonderful friends
I’ve made over the years,”
she said. “I also love the
fact that it’s something
you do by yourself, and
you have to be the best
you can be with your horse at that moment in time.”
With one child in college and the
other a chef, Crandon is enjoying pursuing her passion.
“Riding with Sam and his group has
been great. He’s just so professional,”
she said. “I’m so looking forward to
the rest of the year!” ✦
CURRENT TOP 20
(As of shows input June 4, 2015)
Sarah Lynn Locker
Jack R. Medows
10. Michael A. Garnett
11. Mandy McCutcheon
12. Catherine C. Crandon
13. Kelle L. Smith
14. Lisa Bissell
15. Fabienne Suter
16. Jose Vazquez
17. Manuel Bonzano
19. Ronald J. Thompson
20. Victoria Lambert
Katsy Leeman, Massillon, Ohio
HEN AUBURN UNIVERSITY’S EQUESTRIAN TEAM NEEDED
another reiner and asked Katsy Leeman, she discovered
a new love.
“We have a pleasure horse farm, so I’ve ridden pleasure
and all-around horses for years,” Leeman said. “Reining is
completely opposite—it’s a totally different feel to add speed
and so much control while going fast. I really enjoy it.”
During her college career, Leeman was named the SEC’s
most outstanding player, was on the 2014 All-SEC Equestrian
Team and the 2014 SEC championship reining team.
“Reining’s been really great for me,” she said.
Leeman graduated this past May with a communications
degree in political science and will start working at her
grandfather Fritz Leeman’s business, Brewster Cheese. She
actually introduced Reining to him, and he’s gone on to be
a successful NRHA owner and proud supporter of his
“This year I’ve been showing Footwork Revolution, a 5year-old stallion we bought last December from Brian Bell.
He’s been awesome so far,” she said. “Now that I’ve graduated
I’m looking forward to showing him at a couple of big shows
From the beginning, Leeman has trained with NRHA Professional and NRHA Five Million Dollar Rider Shawn Flarida.
“My grandpa sent me down to Shawn’s before we had any
reining horses. Shawn literally put me on every horse he
could find and then told me I was an okay rider so I could
come back,” she laughed. “He’s been great for me because I
get to ride so many different horses. Reining is still so new to
me that there are so many things I want to accomplish.” ✦