The Tulsa Reining Classic has announced that Cardinal Reining Horses has come on board as the title sponsor of the Open Derby. The Open Derby is a signature event of the Tulsa Reining Classic, which runs August 26-31.
Cardinal Training Center is owned by Joao Marcos Arruda Pires. After his purchase in 2013 of the premier reining horse facility formerly known as Green Valley Ranch, John Marcos, as he is known in the United States, changed the name to Cardinal Reining Horses.
Though he might be new to reining, John Marcos also owns Cardinal Training Center—a 300 acre elite racing horse facility in Ocala, Florida. A chance trip to Texas led to Marcos purchasing the reining facility, though he didn’t know anything about reining at the time. He was driving through the Aubrey area one summer day when he saw a for sale sign in front of what was then Green Valley Ranch. He purchased the spectacular 200 acre facility and he has quickly became a driving force in the reining industry.
Colleen McQuay, a partner of Global Reining Sports Group, which manages the Tulsa Reining Classic, noted, “We are so pleased to have Joao Marcos and Cardinal Ranch become part of the Tulsa Reining Classic for the next three years and we also appreciate his extensive efforts to promote the international reining industry. He is already an asset to many parts of our industry and his support of the TRC is another important contribution to the needs of our sport. ”
Reflecting the international ties developing throughout the reining industry, Cardinal Ranch serves as home base for several leading trainers. Brazilian native and NRHA Professional Franco Bertolani is head trainer for Cardinal Reining Horses, along with his wife, Italian Giorgia Codeluppi.
“I always try to hire really good professionals in their field, which is why I hired Franco and Giorgia to oversee the horse training side of the business, and Tom McCutcheon to manage the mares,” John Marcos said, adding that McCutcheon has several of his horses in training. “This is not a hobby for me—this is a business.”
Cardinal Ranch stood two stallions in 2014, Star Spangled Whiz LTE: $175,000+ (Topsail Whiz x Sheza Shady Slider) owned by Bevilacqua Quarter Horses, Italy, and CFR Centenario Wimpy LTE: $120,000+
(Wimpys Little Step x Miss Hollywood Whiz) owned by Slide or Die LLC, Italy.
Five other trainers run independent businesses out of Cardinal Ranch:
NRHA Million Dollar Rider Brian Bell, Italian Derby Champion Stefano Massignan, NRHA Open World Champion Ann Salmon, NRBC Open L3 Champion Ruben Vandorp and NRBC Open Finalist Billy Williams.
With $33,000 added, the Cardinal Reining Horses Open Derby will feature the industry’s top 4,5 and 6-year-old reining horses and the competition is sure to be fierce in the climactic finale to the week of reining at Tulsa’s Expo Square