2008 - Ian Francis
If he turns up he will be ready and the class won't be won until he has had his run
Ian Francis began training horses to supplement his income during the beef depression in the early 1970's.
Kolora Quarter Horse Stud principals John and Jenny Kingston offered him the job of manager/trainer of their stud in 1974, thus involving him in the western performance show ring.
He quickly proved hard to beat in most western performance classes, but having had rodeo and campdrafting as a foundation, reined cowhorse and reining became his signature events.
Prior to the formation of NRHA (Reining Australia) Ian had shown more than 50 AQHA National Champions and 6 High Point Reining Horse of Australia winners.
His involvement in NRHA (Reining Australia) events began in 1991 winning the Premier State Show Reining Futurity and was 4th in the NRHA Futurity that year.
In 1992 he showed both Champion and Reserve Champion at the NRHA Futurity.
Ian has an unmatched record in Australian reining.
NRHA Open Futurity - 6x Champion
NRHA Open Futurity - 4 x Reserve Champion
NRHA Open Derby - 4 x Champion
NRHA Open Derby - 4 x Reserve Champions
Equitana Masters Champion
IRC World Cup Open Division - Champion
Ian is the first rider to accumulate $100,000 in reining earnings qualifying him for Legend Rider Status. Through most of his career with reining Ian was the man holding the high bar in competitive standards.
He is a noted clinician , motivator and has mentored many of Australia's leading trainers and non pro’s.
A quote from a 2000 article reads "If he turns up he will be ready and the class won't be won until he has had his run".