The June 2011 issue of Horse&Rider
featured a tribute to “The Master,” reined cow horse trainer Greg Ward. The dossier below further reveals the important role he played in the development of the reined cow horse industry.
Born: October 8, 1935; Bakersfield, California.
Died: December 6, 1998; Visalia, California.
Lifelong Occupation: Professional horseman, breeder.
- Four NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity wins: Sugarnic, 1972; Sugar Remedy, 1981; Smokinic, 1986; Reminics Pep, 1998. Four futurity reserve championships: Sugar Fred, 1975; Nic A Chex, 1986; Peppy Remedy, 1988; Plain Sugar Remedy, 1992.
- Other NRCHA championships: Snaffle Bit Maturity, Roanie Blue Pony, 1985; Snaffle Bit Stakes, Sister Train, 1991, and Just Sugar Remedy, 1993; All-Around Stock Horse Contest (herd work, steer stopping, reined work, and cow work), 1974, ’75, ’76, ’77, ’90, ’92.
- National Cutting Horse Association Futurity finalist seven times; semi-finalist 12 times; NCHA earnings over $800,000. 1981 NCHA Futurity champion stallion honors and third-place finish with Reminic.
- 1975 Pacific Coast Cutting Futurity Champion on Sugar Fred (not affiliated with the Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association and predating the PCCHA Futurity).
- 1973 Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association Maturity reserve champion on Sugarnic. 1981 PCCHA Futurity co-reserve champion on Sugar Remedy. 1993 PCCHA Cutting Stakes champion on Just Mister Dual.
- Raised and trained numerous well-known stallions, including Boomernic, 1992 NRHA Futurity champion; Dual Pep, winner of over $300,000 in NCHA purses; and leading cow-horse sires Master Remedy and Reminic. Owned and/or stood at stud stallions Docs Remedy, Just Plain Colonel, and Sugar Vandy.
- The Ward Ranch has produced 143 NRCHA Futurity finalists from 197 through 2010, including nine open champions, six open reserve champions, five non-pro champions, and six non-pro reserve champions.
- Ward Ranch mares, most related to the dynasty-founding mare Fillinic, have produced offspring earning well over $1.5 million in NCHA events alone.
- Received the PCCHA Dave McGregor Achievement Award for sportsmanship, 1995. Inducted into the NRCHA Hall of Fame, 1996. Inducted into Kern County (California) Hall of Fame, February 1999.
Mentors: His horses. (Developed his own methods by reading and watching others train and compete.)
Prot?g?s: Son John Ward, the 1994 and 2008 NRCHA Futurity winner; Jon Roeser, 1990 NRCHA Futurity winner and three-time reserve champion. Also Bobby Cotta, Richard Fierreo, Crawford Hall, Gordon Hayes, Wayne Hinder, and Will Landers.
Winning non-pros: Billy Burton, Jimmy Dassel, Billy Freeman, Sheila Head, Jerry Westphal.
Surviving family: Wife, Laura “Shorty” Ward; son, John Ward, who’s carrying on his father’s legacy; two daughters, Wende Ward Lourenco and Amy Aguiar; multiple grandchildren; a brother, Kirk Ward.