Manitoba Horse Council (MHC) recognizes and celebrates excellence by way of our Annual Awards, which honour the achievements of athletes, volunteers, coaches, and of course our horses. At our Annual General Meeting to be held April 18, 2022 we will be acknowledging community members who have made (and continue to make) a positive difference to our equestrian community, whether through advancement of rider skills or business opportunities.

The nomination deadline is January 31, 2022 and MHC looks for nominations in the following categories:

  • Volunteer of the Year    
  • Youth Athlete of the Year 
  • Adult Athlete of the Year              
  • Coach of the Year (Competition Coach, and non-Competition Coach)
  • Horse of the Year
  • Horse Industry Professional of the Year

Star performers of 2021

Despite the challenges that the pandemic put on competitions and shows, the following riders rose to the occasion to give their best in 2021.

In the sport of dressage, Brooke Mancusi was named to Team Canada for North American Youth Championships — Young Rider Division and named to Canada’s National Team Program — Talent ID Squad. Brooke competed in a number of international competitions in Florida last winter with great success.

In November, Izzy Biron placed third in the Open Rider Class at the Royal West International Show Jumping Competition held in Calgary, Alberta.

Manitoba Team Penning had a stellar year starting with the Calgary Stampede Team Penning-International show in July, featuring riders from all across North America. It was a Manitoba clean sweep in the Open Class with Darcy Brown, Robert Bruneau, and Harvey Penner competing together on the same team to win the Championship Buckle! Other top performers included Arlene Bruneau, Matthew Penner, Rachel Penner, and Noah Morin.

Then it was on to the US Team Penning World Championship in Amarillo, Texas where the individuals placed in the top 10 for several classes and Robert Bruneau placed first in the 10 Elite Class.

Sharon Forbes-Hanks made an impressive 13th showing in Hunter Under Saddle Equitation at the AQHA World Show in Oklahoma City, OK in October. And, in August at the Canadian National Quarter Horse Show in Red Deer, AB, Manitoba riders, Christine Little, Courtney Penner, Maureen Epp, Scott McKenzie, Dale Barkman, Teresa Weins, Cindy Routledge, Lynn Sandercock and Jennifer McKinnon, placed in the top five in several classes. First place finishes went to Courtney Penner in Senior Trail; Maureen Epp in Amateur Select Showmanship; Teresa Weins in Amateur Performance Mares Halter; Cindy Routledge in Select Amateur Hunter Under Saddle Equitation; and Jennifer McKinnon, L1 Amateur Hunter Under Saddle and Amateur Hunter Under Saddle.

We are most grateful to clubs for sharing these good news stories with MHC! If other clubs have riders who competed on the national or international stage in 2021, we would love to hear about it. Please email (we would love to receive photos, too).

Congratulations to all riders, horses, coaches, officials, and owners who represented Manitoba on the national and world stages in an extraordinary year. As you turn your focus to 2022, remember to take time to celebrate your achievements in 2021.

Manitoba Horse Council

Photo: Shutterstock/Yurina Photo