2015 NCHA Super Stakes Sale continues upward trend

Monday, April 20th, 2015

Metallic Flo

Metallic Flo, a 3-year-old Metallic Cat daughter in training with T.J. Good, was the high-selling lot, at $60,000, during Western Bloodstock Ltd.’s NCHA Super Stakes Sale on Saturday, April 18, at Will Rogers Equestrian Center in Fort Worth, Tex. Cancan Reyvolution, an 8-year-old gelding sired by Dual Rey brought $40,000, as the sales second-highest seller.

The Top 10 sellers averaged $28,000, representing a 23 percent increase over the sale’s 2014 Top 10 sellers, and the Top 20 sellers averaged $22,150, a 22 percent increase over 2014.

The sale’s net average of $11,341 on 76 horses sold represents a seven percent increase over 2014 sale, figures, while the percentage sold remained at 73 percent, from 104 lots, with a gross average of $14,725.

Metallic Flo, consigned by Alan Chappell, Gainesville, Tex., was purchased by Cody Erwin, Vancouver, Wash. Cancan Reyvolution, the 2011 NCHA Derby Non-Pro champion and NCHA earner of $145,837, was purchased by Kent Arnold DVM, Terrell, Tex., from John and Lica Pinkston, Alice, Tex.

Purrfect Playgirl was the high-selling 4-year-old at $25,500. The High Brow Cat daughter, in training with Bill Riddle, was consigned by Glenn Drake, Napa, Calif., and sold to Juan Carlos Rengel Leon, Valencia, Venezuela.

Smart Metallic RG, at $22,000, was the high-selling stallion. The 4-year-old Metallic Cat son, in training with T.J. Good, was consigned by Mariposa Farms and purchased by Billy Gene Crenshaw, Kountze, Tex.

The NCHA Summer Spectacular Sale, August 1 at Will Rogers Equestrian Center in Fort Worth, is the next sale on Western Bloodstock Ltd.’s agenda, followed by the Center Ranch Production Sale, in Centerville, Tex. on October 10, and the NCHA Futurity Sales in Fort Worth, in December.

Two tops for 2015 NCHA Super Stakes

Sunday, April 19th, 2015

Smooth Talkin Style, reserve champion of the 2014 NCHA Open Futurity under Lloyd Cox, and Dont Stopp Believin with Phil Rapp, each scored 223 points on Saturday to reign as co-champions of the 2015 Open Super Stakes. Adelle and Lindy Burch claimed the second-highest mark with 221.5 points.

Smooth Talkin Style

Lloyd Cox, co-champion on Smooth Talkin Style. Alan Gold photos.

“I’m really comfortable on him and he gives me a reason to be comfortable,” said Cox of Smooth Talkin Style, sired by Smooth As A Cat, bred by Gail Holmes, and owned by Holmes and Dottie Hill. “He reads the situation really good, and on top of that he has ability.”

This was the first Super Stakes win for Cox, 50,  the Super Stakes reserve champion in 2003, on TR Dual Rey, and in 1996, on High Brows Nurse, and an NCHA Riders Hall of Fame member with earnings of $6.9 million.

Dont Stopp Believin, by Dual Rey, gave NCHA Hall of Fame rider Phil Rapp, lifetime earner of $8.4 million, a record third Super Stakes win. Rapp’s first was in 1994, aboard Dont Stopp Believin’s maternal great-granddam Tap O Lena. His second was in 2006, on Dual Smart Rey.

Dont Stopp Believin

Phil Rapp, co-champion on Dont Stopp Believin.

“In 1984, my dad bought Tapeppyoaka Peppy for me,” said Rapp. “She was four and I was 14 and everyone asked why he hadn’t bought me an older horse. He said he wanted me to have a good horse and we could learn together.

“It took a few years, but it has been quite an adventure, and for five generations, we’ve always had a pretty good horse.”

Tapeppyoaka Peppy was the dam of Tap O Lena, NCHA earner of $450,639 and 17 championship wins under Rapp,  in open and non-pro competition.

Bred by Waco Bend Ranch and owned by Phil and Mary Ann Rapp, Dont Stopp Believin is out of Don’t Look Twice, 2011 NCHA Horse of the Year, 2012 NCHA World Champion, and cutting’s all-time female money earner with $804,954 and 26 championship wins.

Smooth Talkin Style and Don’t Stopp Believin each earned an estimated $56,853, as co champions.

Cade Shepard, 13, becomes NCHA’s youngest Non-Pro Triple Crown event champion

Cade Shepard

Non-Pro Champion Cade Shepard on Twistful Thinking

Cade Shepard, 13, struck fear in the hearts of more than a few non-pro competitors on Saturday, with an eleventh-hour, 217.5-point win in the 23-horse NCHA Super Stakes Non-Pro Finals.

With his win on Twistful Thinking, Cade became the youngest rider in history to win an NCHA Non-Pro Triple Crown event. The previous record was held by Kelle Earnheart, winner at 15, of the 2000 NCHA Non-Pro Derby on Justa Swinging Jane.

Ashley Galyean earned the reserve championship on Saturday with 216.5 points on Pedaltothemedal, by Metallic Cat.

Since his NCHA Futurity debut, as co-reserve champion of the 2014 Non-Pro Limited, Cade and his One Time Pepto daughter have earned $45,724, including $16,923 for the Super Stakes win. The precocious pair also claimed reserve in the Ike Hamilton Non-Pro Futurity, as well as that event’s Non-Pro Limited championship.

“It’s definitely the most money I’ve won in one year,” said Cade, son of Austin Shepard, an NCHA Hall of Fame Rider with NCHA earnings of $5.9 million, and grandson of Sam Shepard, also a member of the NCHA Riders Hall of Fame.

Sam Shepard trained Twistful Thinking for the NCHA Futurity, where he sold her to Cade, who at nine had shown the mare’s dam, Some Kinda Twister, to place as a Junior Youth Finalist in the NCHA Eastern National Championships.

“I I think I am getting a little bit better,” said Cade of his riding skills. “But I’m going to say the horse is getting better and probably helping me get better.”

Wright on for Stars Freckled Girl

Sunday, April 12th, 2015

Stars Freckled Girl and Greg Wright. Alan Gold photo

Greg Wright and Stars Freckled Girl, by Metallic Cat, scored 217 points, as the next-to-last entry in the 16-horse John Deere Division of the Lucas Oil NCHA Super Stakes Open Finals, to claim the championship for owners Lincoln and Bonnie Clifton, Oklahoma City, Okla.

Wes Ashlock, aboard Gone Are The Times, by One Time Pepto, and Fons De Barbanson on Wild Starz, by Wilds My Thing, tied with the second-highest score of 216 points. Gone Are The Times and Wild Starz are owned by John and Jana Thacker and Nachos QHs, respectively.

Shut out by a renegade cow earlier in the Finals on High On Smarts, also owned by the Cliftons, Wright put his trust in his helpers and Stars Freckled Girl for the eleventh hour win, his first in Will Rogers Coliseum.

“We bought her from Phil Hanson last July, after the Derby,” said Wright. “They did a fabulous job with her. She was cutting when we bought her and we’ve just tried to keep her cutting.”

Shown by both Wright and Lincoln in the 2014 NCHA Futurity, Stars Freckled Cat placed with Lincoln in the Non-Pro Finals, as well as the Non-Pro Limited Finals; placed fifth with Wright in the Open Limited Finals; and earned $15,000 as an Open Semi-Finalist.

“I was a golfer and a friend introduced me to cutting horses,” said Clifton, a trucking company owner with ties to the oil industry. “My handicaps went from a 10 back to a 15, and the next thing I knew, I had about twenty head of horses and babies.”

Stars Freckled Girl, bred by Phil and Leah Hanson, is by Metallic Cat out of Badge To The Bone, a Freckles Playboy daughter with unique connections to the NCHA Futurity and the NCHA World Championships.

Badge To The Bone is out of Badge Of Courage, by Peppy San Badger. Bred by S.J. Agnew out of the Doc Bar daughter Tenino Fair, Badge of Courage was a full sister to Little Tenina $385,822, and three-quarter sister to Tenino San $144,658. Little Tenina was champion of the 1991 NCHA Futurity and 1992 NCHA Derby under Greg Welch, and Tenino San won the 1982 NCHA World Championship, also under Welch.

Wright began his career in California as a reined cowhorse trainer, before he switched to cutting. In 1992, he was reserve champion of the PCCHA Futurity aboard Lakotah Warrior, then won the championship in 1993 aboard Whisper Ofa Playgirl. After that, he struggled to stay competitive.

“I got strung out on dope – meth and crack,” said Wright, matter-of-factly. “But Shannon Hall and his family had a big play in getting me straight. After I went to rehab, I went to work for Shannon for two and a half years, and Shannon got me the job working for Linc.”

Lincoln Clifton is slated to show Stars Freckled Girl in the third set of Lucas Oil Super Stakes Non-Pro first go-round competition on Tuesday, April 14.

Reprise for Feiner and Lil Rattler in Super Stakes Classic

Wednesday, April 8th, 2015

Steven Feiner and Lil Rattler. Alan Gold photo

“This is a very humbling sport,” said Steven Feiner, following his 222.5-point win aboard Lil Rattler on Wednesday, April 8, in the 2015 Lucas Oil NCHA Super Stakes Classic Non-Pro Finals. “We were able to get the cows that we wanted and cut them clean, and that was the difference for us. The mare did the rest.”

It was a reprise performance for Feiner and the 6-year-old Dual Rey daughter. The pair also claimed the 2014 NCHA Super Stakes Non-Pro Classic, Feiner’s first title win in Will Rogers Coliseum, in a 220-point tie with Paula Wood and Donas Suen Boon.

Dean Holden and Playin With A Spoon, by Hes A Peptospoonful, scored 219.5 points for Reserve in Wednesday’s Finals, while Mary Ann Rapp and Swing Thru The Drive, by Hydrive Cat, placed third with 218.5 points.

Two years ago this month, Lil Rattler earned her first major check, as fourth-placed finalist under Wesley Galyean, in the 2013 NCHA Open Super Stakes. With the addition of Wednesday’s winnings, she has joined an elite group of NCHA earners with earnings of $200,000 or more.

Feiner purchased Little Rattler as a long two-year-old from Paul Dean, who bred her out of the 2005 NCHA Futurity Open champion Highbrow Supercat, dam of earners of more than $600,000.

“Wesley started her and has had her since the beginning,” said Feiner, a retired clothing business owner, who lives in Aspen, Colo. “He let me start showing her in Vegas of her four-year-old year. She was a lot of horse for me to get used to. She really hits it and gets down on her front end. But she’s so honest and sweet, and so easy to be around, both of us have really enjoyed her.”

Dean Holden and Playin With A Spoon also reprised past Super Stakes success with Wednesday’s performance. In 2013, Holden and his now 6-year-old gelding were reserve champions in both the Super Stakes Non-Pro and Super Stakes Non-Pro Gelding divisions.

Mary Ann Rapp, champion of the 2010 NCHA Non-Pro Super Stakes aboard ARC Catmando, as well as champion of the 2003 NCHA Super Stakes Non-Pro Classic with Amanda Stargun, was also a 2015 Super Stakes Classic Non-Pro Finalist with One Red Mist, a go-round leader with a cumulative score of 434.5 points. Five-year-old Swing Thru The Drive earned her first and to-date only other limited age event paycheck as a semi-finalist with Rapp in the 2014 NCHA Super Stakes Non-Pro division.

The Super Stakes continues Thursday with the first round of Super Stakes Open go-round competition.

Sheridan Clark claims a rare triple

Sunday, April 5th, 2015
Sheridan Clark

Sheridan Clark and Meradas Puddy Cat are three-time winners in Will Rogers Coliseum. Alan Gold photo.

When 15-year-old Sheridan Clark, Weatherford, Tex., won the Limited Non-Pro Finals of the Lucas Oil NCHA Super Stakes Classic on Sunday, April 5, she became the youngest member of an elite club. Only 12 other riders have won three or more championships in major NCHA Triple Crown divisions on a single horse. And all but two of them are professional trainers.

Clark and Meradas Puddy Cat marked 225 in the Super Stakes Classic for a championship title to add to their previous Limited Non-Pro titles in the 2013 NCHA Futurity and the 2014 NCHA Derby.

Triple Crown winners Bill Freeman (Smart Little Lena, 1982-83), Joe Heim (Docs Okie Quixote, 1983-84) and Tag Rice (Chiquita Pistol, 2002-03) are Clark’s most obvious predecessors. Here are others who have won three or more championships at NCHA Triple Crown events on a single horse:

  • The late Greg Welch won the 1991 NCHA Futurity, 1992 NCHA Derby and 1993 NCHA Classic on Little Tenina.
  • All-time leading rider Phil Rapp won three Open and three Non-Pro championships in Will Rogers Coliseum on Tap O Lena in the mid-1990s.
  • Sandy Bonelli won four Non-Pro and two Open titles on Shakin Flo a few years later.
  • Boyd Rice has the most Open wins in WRMC on a single horse, Third Cutting, taking the NCHA Super Stakes, NCHA Derby,  NCHA Super Stakes Classic and NCHA Classic Challenge.
  • Roger Wagner won the NCHA Derby, Super Stakes Classic and Classic Challenge on Stylish Martini.
  • Skip Queen and Sister CD were Non-Pro Champions in the Super Stakes and Super Stakes Classic, and also won the Open Super Stakes Classic.
  • Tate Bennett put together a hat trick in the John Deere Limited Open Division with Reyn Maker in the NCHA Derby, Super Stakes and Super Stakes Classic.
  • Patrick Collins and Oh Cay Felix won Amateur titles in the NCHA Futurity and Super Stakes Classic, as well as the Limited Non-Pro at the NCHA Classic Challenge.
  • Mica (Motes) Chartier won the Non-Pro Super Stakes Classic, and the Limited Non-Pro Super Stakes Classic and Classic Challenge on SL Jaybird.

Another Open hole-in-one for Junie Wood

Saturday, April 4th, 2015

Junie Wood, Alan Gold photo

Junie Wood, 2014 NCHA Horse of the Year and reigning Super Stakes champion, owned by Slate River Ranch, claimed her fourth consecutive major win last night with 226 points under John Mitchell, who has been aboard the 5-year-old Nitas Wood daughter for all of her Open Limited Age events. The $37,495 win increased Junie Wood’s already heady earnings record to $337,232.

Six-year-old Quick To Dual, sired by Dual Rey and shown by Adan Banuelos for Jayme Toledo De Resende, claimed reserve with 222 points, as the first horse to work in the first set of the Finals. Boon San Spoon, owned by Walton’s Rocking W Ranch and shown by Jesse Lennox, was third with 221 points.

“I settled the first set for Adan and they felt a little quiet, but they had enough move to them,” said Mitchell, who drew second to ride in the second set. “In the second set, it looked like there weren’t enough quick cows to have a big score, but we cut the cows we wanted. They let me cut them clean as a whistle, and it was outstanding.

“That’s why everything flowed so good (for us). We had three good cows and three good cuts. I had my head on, but Matt Sargood made sure that I stopped after every cow and got my stuff together. I really appreciated that. It helps to have someone pull you up.”

Junie Wood, who was the 2013 NCHA Futurity Non-Pro champion with Craig Crumpler before Slate River Ranch owner Glade Knight purchased her at that event, maintained a full docket this week, as both an Open and Non-Pro contender. Although she was solid for Knight with matching go-round scores of 214 points, Knight’s cumulative was not enough to advance to the Non-Pro Finals.

“I’ve never had any pressure on her because she was never bought to do what she’s done,” said Mitchell. “She’s Glade’s horse and he sure gets along with her. But it’s still, you’ve got to have everything right to have that sort of run.”

The 2015 Super Stakes Open Classic counted as Junie Wood’s sixth Open win and fourth consecutive Open win, as well as her fourth this year.

“The horsemen that I respect know what it means to win four in a row,” said Mitchell. “It’s not just that you’re ripping and tearing and you have a good horse, but you’re grateful to have had a few good trips.

“You have to be lucky to win. But when she has a shot, she still pulls it off. She’s a special horse.”

In addition to the 2015 NCHA Super Stakes Classic and the 2014 Super Stakes, which she won with 229 points, Junie Wood’s Open wins include the 2014 Southern Futurity, the 2014 Brazos Bash Derby, the 2015 Abilene Spectacular Classic, and 2015 Bonanza Classic.

Solid win for Gold From Home and Jon Burgess

Saturday, April 4th, 2015

Gold From Home, Alan Gold photo

Six-year-old Gold From Home, shown by Jon Burgess for Hare Quarter Horses LLC, scored 221 points on Friday, April 3, to win the John Deere Division of the 2015 Lucas Oil Super Stakes Open Classic. The $5,171 winner’s check is the first earned by the WR This Cats Smart son in limited age competition.

MK Rey Girl, owned by Gale Force Quarter Horses and shown by Kevin Walden, claimed reserve with 218 points, while Red N Smooth took third with 216 points, under Justin White for Rocking W Ranch.

“This is my first win here and it’s awesome,” said Burgess, who won the 2012 Breeders Invitational Novice with Tassajara Magic, and earned his biggest paycheck with a fourth place-performance worth $78,683 on Chula Dual, in the 1998 NCHA Futurity.

“He’s one of those horses you dream about. You can call on him or you can slow him down. But when you say, ‘Let’s do it,’ he’ll give you everything he’s got and try his guts out.

“I got to ride him at three, and about a year ago, I got him back. It was a love story when I first had him and it’s a love story now, and I’d like to thank the Hares for giving me the opportunity to ride him.”

Gold From Home and Burgess earned 436.5 cumulative points in the go-rounds to tie with Red N Smooth for the fourth-highest cumulative score, and also scored 216.5 points in the Semi-Finals to qualify for Saturday’s Open Classic Finals.

The palomino stallion was bred by Hare Quarter Horses, Lipan, Tex., out of Haidas Little Shorty, by Haidas Little Pep, and is a three-quarter brother to Pounce, a High Brow Cat daughter and the earner of $213,769. In addition to Gold From Home, whose first foal crop arrived this year, Hare Quarter Horses also stands his full brother, Gold Wrush.

Gold From Home and Burgess currently lead the NCHA World Championship standings in the $15,000 Novice division.


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