Father and Son Sweep Freestyle Reining
“I was hoping to beat him for once. But as usual, that didn’t happen,” said Reed Kyle as his father, Pete Kyle chuckled in the background. Both Kyles competed in last night’s All American Quarter Horse Congress (AAQHC) Freestyle Reining, and received top honors. Pete Kyle marked a 232 to sweep the Open division while Reed marked his debut freestyle run with a score of 225 to walk away with the Reserve title.
The father and son duo packed up their bags at their ranch in Whitesboro, Texas Friday night and drove the 1000 mile journey to Columbus especially for the AAQHC Freestyle.
Pete, who serves as the executive director of shows and judges for AQHA, had decided against competing at the AAQHC this year until Reed offered him a deal.
“Reed called me up and said, ‘let’s do the freestyle. I’ll enter it and let’s go up.’ And I thought that’d be fun. ‘Let’s do that together’,” recalled Pete.
“He’s so busy with his schedule now, and so am I these days,” explained Reed, who works for Thomas Moore Feed as a north Texas territory sales manager. “Just to get some time out of our busy schedules to spend time together traveling and showing made it so much fun.”
Pete, whose name is synonymous with freestyle reining shared his “tricks of the trade” with his son before competing at the AAQHC.
“We both picked out fun music that we hoped everybody would enjoy. We worked out a program, but didn’t practice the routine much. We just made sure our horses were doing the maneuvers really well so we didn’t get caught up in the excitement. That’s what we did, and it worked well.”
Good solid maneuvers and having a good time are Pete’s key components of a successful freestyle. “Just relax and have fun. That’s what it’s all about.”
Reed believes he’s learned from one of the best—his father. “This is my first [freestyle] but I’ve been able to watch my dad and was able to learn a lot from him growing up and just see how to do it all.”
Both Pete and Reed see a bright future for the reining industry and freestyle reining. “[Reining] is a global sport and associations think there is a place for freestyle. It’s entertaining and brings new people to the industry. They watch it, enjoy it, then want to get involved in reining,” says Pete.
“I have a love and passion for reining and want to see it continue to grow,” added Reed.
The AAQHC holds a special place for both father and son.
As Pete said, “The Congress has always been special for me and I’ve had a lot of success here. The crowd is great. They just treat you like kings. it’s a great show and I think it’s the best freestyle going.”