Behind the Slide – Dan Dobbs + Alex Quinte, NRHA IT

They’re the dynamic duo you don’t actually see, but you love their work. Dan Dobbs and Alex Quinte are the coolest IT guys you’ve never met, but should. Wireless scoring systems, instantaneous draw updates, and high-definition live video streaming only scratch the surface when it comes to Dan and Alex’s work. Hailing from Germany, Alex is comparable to Einstein himself according to Dan. 

“Alex trained me how to work a show,” Dan said. “It was my first event with NRHA when I was told we had a guy coming from Europe. We had heard about his software running there and thought it was cool. I was asked to find out what it would take to get our shows running on the software.” 

Luckily, Dan and Alex became fast friends, and Showmanager became the software of choice for major NRHA events. 

“I was in an academic research setting for grid computing when I got asked to start developing management software for horse shows. That was 10 years ago,” Alex explained. “I started out with smaller reining shows, helping my sister from the software side.” 

It didn’t take long for Alex’s brilliant software to take off in Europe. Soon enough he was managing the electronics of major reining events such as the Italian Futurity and Italian Derby. 

“When Alex first started working shows, the handhelds weren’t wireless,” Dan said. “We had a cable to each one, and they looked like old calculators. It was just numbers and an enter button. Every year the software progresses; every year Alex rolls out new functionality or features.” 

Everything from the jumbotron to the information in the draw sheets is handled through Alex’s program. There is no detail too small for these two; they take care of it all here in Oklahoma City. 

Although there are other software programs available to handle the details of a show, Alex said the strength of his system stems from the comprehensive outlook he took when building it. 

“You can run a weekend show on the other packages out there, but if you want wireless tables, scores going to the internet, overlays on the video—all the little details that you see here [the Futurity]—you need Alex’s system,” Dan said. “It even has a financial component to it.