The owner / trainer team of Charles Stojan and William Leech had a number of achievements to celebrate in 2020.
With Free Thought extending his AQHA world record winning streak to eighteen, and impressive horses that dominated the racetracks in Alberta during the season, such as Stripstreak, Flight Club, and Light Footed, all qualifying for the AQHA’s Bank of America Challenge Championships held October 24, 2020 in Albuquerque, New Mexico.
In doing so, Stojan was crowned the John Deere Champion Owner of the year and Leech was named the Wrangler Champion Trainer of the year, both very coveted honours in the world of Quarter Horse Racing internationally.
Winning these awards which are part of the AQHA Bank of America Challenge program takes dedication and results earned over a series of races held throughout the year in several different countries.
The horses who help their breeders, owners trainers and jockeys win these awards are enrolled in the lifetime program and earn points and winnings at races held worldwide, which contribute to the annual tally of points which see individuals named to these prestigious awards.
Stojan is a repeat winner of the owner award, he hails from Grande Prairie Alberta. Racing four horses in 2020 in multiple age categories, and collecting points and earnings in Canada and the United States he was awarded a custom belt buckle and John Deere Gator thanks to the AQHA sponsor for his achievements.
2020 Wrangle Champion Trainer of the year, William Leech from Sterling, Alberta faced a whole new set of challenges on the road to achieving this award, due to the Covid-19 world pandemic; for instance there was very limited racing here in Canada, and health and safety protocols at the racetracks meant there were significantly few on track training days. With boarder restrictions put in place by the Canadian government, the trip to New Mexico in October for the Bank of America Championship races was limited to just him and jockey Ricardo Moreno, leaving owner Charles Stojan and his family back at home cheering them on with the rest of Canada.
Congratulations to Charles and William, to their dedicated support team, and the incredible equine athletes who all assisted them in achieving these coveted awards.