Elizabeth Quirk wins Brazos Bash Non-Pro Classic

Friday, September 25th, 2020

Elizabeth Quirk, Denham Springs, La., scored 228 on Candi Cat to win $16,000, as champion of the 2020 Brazos Bash 5/6-year-old Non-Pro Classic, on September 25. Paula Wood, Stephenville, Tex., earned $14,000 and the reserve championship with 225 points on Cool N Hot, while Ryan Rapp, Weatherford, Tex., placed third with 222 points to earn $12,000 aboard Driving Miss Em.

Elizabeth Quirk, the NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $1,097,943, and the 2018 NCHA Non-Pro World Champion riding Cat Sheree LTE $253,379, by High Brow CD, was also reserve champion of the 2020 Brazos Bash Non-Pro Derby on September 25, riding Ireydescent LTE $101,644, by Dual Rey.

In addition to her win in the Brazos Bash Non-Pro Classic, Quirk also earned $6,000 for eighth place riding CD Super Freak LTE $56,510, by High Brow CD.

Candi Cat LTE $110,944, sired by High Brow Cat and bred by Wendel & Eakin, is a full sister to High Brow CD LTE $502,202 and Sweet Little Cats LTE $213,270, out of Sweet Little CD LTE $106,085, dam of the earners of $1,242,906.

Paula Wood, the NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $2,568,476, counts NCHA Futurity, Super Stakes, and Derby Non-Pro championships among her many wins, as well as the 1993 NCHA Non-Pro World Championship.

Six year-old Cool N Hot LTE $413,367, by Hottish, was bred by Wood out of the High Brow Cat daughter Donas Cool Cat LTE $315,104, who carried Wood to win the 2006 NCHA Non-Pro World Finals. Donas Cool Cat has produced 14 earners of $1,306,405, including Donas Suen Boon LTE $425,911, who Wood showed to win the 2012 NCHA Non-Pro Futurity.

As a 4-year-old, Cool N Hot won Open championships in the NCHA Super Stakes, Bonanza, and Brazos Bash under Kobie Wood, Paula’s husband. This year Cool N Hot has carried Paula as champion of the Abilene Spectacular Non-Pro Classic, as well as a Non-Pro finalist in the NCHA Classic Challenge, Bonanza, and Cattlemen’s Derby. Kobie Wood has also shown the stallion this year as an Open finalist in four major events, including the Brazos Bash.

Ryan Rapp, the NCHA earner of over $423,874 and winner of the 2020 Brazos Bash 3-Year-Old Non-Pro, showed 5-year-old Driving Miss Em earlier this year as Non-Pro reserve champion of the Cotton Stakes, as well as a finalist in the NCHA Classic Challenge and The Non-Pro.

Owned and bred by Phil & Mary Ann Rapp of Weatherford, Tex., Driving Miss Em LTE $58,332 is by Woody Be Tuff and out of Swing Thru The Drive LTE $100,168, by Hydrive Cat.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

Mary Ann Rapp wins fourth Brazos Bash Non-Pro title

Friday, September 25th, 2020

Mary Ann Rapp scored 224 points on Reyzin You Suen, by Boon Too Suen, to win $16,000 as champion of the Brazos Bash Non-Pro Derby on September 25, in Weatherford, Tex. Elizabeth Quirk earned $14,000 and the reserve championship with 222 points on Ireydescent, while Ashley Flynn, riding Niteriider, scored 220.5 points for third place and $12,000.

Mary Ann Rapp, the NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $4,660,871, bred Reyzin You Suen out of Reyzin LTE $417,446, who she had shown as the 2013 NCHA Non-Pro Horse of the Year. Reyzin You Suen LTE $18,288 is Reyzin’s fourth and highest money earner, and a half-sister to Reyzin Her Tuff, who Rapp showed as a Non-Pro semi-finalist in the 2019 NCHA Derby.

Phil and Mary Ann, Weatherford, Tex., ranked among the sport’s leading breeders and money earners, also bred True Believers LTE $7,478, winner of the 2020 Brazos Bash Non-Pro Futurity under their son, Ryan Rapp. Ryan also placed sixth in this year’s Brazos Non-Pro Derby aboard Too Suen To Drive LTE $49,523, by Boon Too Suen. Mary Ann had won 2008 and 2009 Brazos Bash Non-Pro 3-Year-Old Futurity championships on Neat Little Ray LTE $58,866 and ARC Catmando LTE $98,715, respectively, as well as the 2002 Brazos Bash Non-Pro Derby on Straightshot Playgun LTE $248,133.

Elizabeth Quirk, the 2018 NCHA Non-Pro World Champion and NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $1,096,925, showed Ireydescent this past summer to tie for third place in the NCHA Non-Pro Derby. Adan Banuelos has also shown the Dual Rey daughter as an Open finalist in six major 2020 events, including as champion of the Abilene Spectacular.

Ireydescent LTE $101,644, owned by Brumbaugh Ranches, Aledo, Tex., was bred by Double Dove Ranch, Fort Worth, Tex., out of Desires Katrina LTE $128,812, dam of three earners of $142,862.

Ashley Flynn, Weatherford, Tex., the NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $680,843, has earned payouts on Niteriider in four 2020 events, including top 10 finishes (fifth and eighth, respectively) in the Abilene Spectacular Non-Pro Derby and the Arbuckle Mountain Non-Pro Derby.

Metallic Cat gelding Niteriider LTE $30,620 was bred by Alvin Fults Amarillo, Tex., out of Sweet Shorty Lena LTE $110,484,  the dam of 15 earners of $1,461,029, including Spots Hot LTE $502,682, Innovation Time LTE $195,273,  Slooow Ride LTE $165,813, and His Reyflection LTE $140,398.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

Ryan Rapp tops Brazos Bash 3-Year-Old competition

Thursday, September 24th, 2020

Ryan Rapp scored 436 points on September 23, in Weatherford, Tex., to win $5,000 riding True Believers in the Brazos Bash 3-Year-Old Non-Pro. Bill Cowan and Catty Lights placed second for $4,000 with 435 points in the eight-horse field, while Alexa Stent earned $3,030 for third with 432 points aboard Ginger Snapz.

True Believers LTE $7,478, bred and owned by Phil and Mary Ann Rapp, Weatherford, Tex., is a gelding by first-crop sire Dont Stopp Believin, and the first money earner out of One Red Mist LTE $160,584, by One Time Pepto. True Believers and Maui Stopp Over, who Rapp showed to place eighth in the Brazos 3-Year-Old Non-Pro, are also the first money earners sired by Dont Stopp Believin LTE $462,124.

Ryan Rapp, the NCHA earner of $423,874, won the the 2018 Brazos Bash Non-Pro Limited on Get Drunk N Trashy, by Gunnatrashya.

Catty Lights LTE $4,354, sired by Light N Lena and bred and owned by Cowan Ranch of Ardmore, Okla., is the first money earner out of Pink Catty LTE $39,207, who placed third in the 2017 Brazos Bash Non-Pro Futurity with Michelle Cowan. Bill Cowan is the NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame earner of $979,686.

Ginger Snapz, sired by Smooth As A Cat and bred and owned by Alexa Stent of Aledo, Tex., is out of Sweet Little Bow LTE $47,569, an Open finalist with Eddie Flynn at the Brazos Bash in both 2013 and 2014.  Alexa Stent, with NCHA earnings of $522,416, won the Brazos Bash 3-Year-Old Non-Pro last year on homebred Smooth Little Bow LTE $47,569, by Smooth As A Cat, and the 5/6 Classic in 2018 with Bowmerang LTE $159,646, by High Brow Cat. Both Bowmerang and Smooth Little Bow, as well as Stent-owned and bred Stylish Little Bow LTE $231,164, are out of Bowmans Little Jewel, the second dam of Ginger Snapz.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

Countin Hot Checks and Dual Clay tie for Derby win

Monday, September 21st, 2020

Countin Hot Checks, shown by Jaime Snider, and Dual Clay, under Grant Setnicka, tied with 228 points for the championship of the Brazos Bash Open Derby on September 21, in Weatherford, Tex. Sanctus and Rodrigo Taboga was next with 225.5, and Twice In Santiago, shown by Adan Banuelos, placed fourth with 222.5 points, the third-highest score.

Dual Clay  and Countin Hot Checks each earned a payout of $19,000; Sanctus received $16,000; and Twice In Santiago claimed $14,000.

Owned and bred by Jamie Hill, Bastrop, Tex., Countin Hot Checks LTE $79,425, by Hottish, is the first money earner out of Cat Countin Checks LTE $168,987, who Hill showed to win the 2014 NCHA Super Stakes Classic Non-Pro Limited. Last month, Countin Hot Checks and Jaime Snider won the West Texas Derby Open Intermediate, and earlier in the year also claimed first in the Arbuckle Mountain Open Novice.

Jaime Snider, the NCHA earner of $1,044,493, also won the 2013 Brazos Bash Classic on Sly Playgirl LTE $332,135, by That Sly Cat.

Dual Clay LTE $69,792, sired by Dual Rey and owned by J Five Horse Ranch, Weatherford, Tex., was bred by Rick Beck, Hemet, Calif., out of the Freckles Playboy daughter Play Like Clay LTE $78,884, an NCHA Futurity and Super Stakes finalist under Lindy Burch. Play Like Clay is the dam of seven earners of $188,466, including Metallic Player LTE $75,901, by Metallic Cat.

Since her debut with Setnicka as a 2019 NCHA Futurity semi-finalist, Dual Clay has placed fourth in the NCHA Derby and been a finalist in the Bonanza, the Arbuckle Mountain Derby, and the Idaho 4-Year-Old Futurity.

Grant Setnicka, the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $3,142,688, was also a finalist in this year’s Brazos Bash Classic on Lady Metallic LTE $65,209, by Metallic Cat, and Brazos Bash Futurity on Smoother Lookin Cat LTE $5,941, by Smooth As A Cat.

Sanctus LTE $126,361, the top money earner of 2020 with wins in the NCHA Derby, the Cattlemen’s Derby, The Non-Pro and Open, and the West Texas Derby, is owned by Scott Durham, Fort Worth, Tex. Sired by High Brow Cat and bred by Isidro Sigala, Weatherford, Tex., Sanctus is out of the Dual Rey daughter Sofie Rey $148,557, who has produced nine earners of $301,330, including Sofies Choice Cat $60,025.

Rodrigo Taboga is the NCHA earner of $469,139, who also won the 2020 Brazos Bash Classic Open Limited, claimed the reserve championship, and placed fourth on Rocky Mountain Blues LTE $65,838, Metallics MVP LTE $145,936, and Hottshot LTE $33,274, respectively. Taboga also placed ninth in the 3-Year-Old Open on Generator LTE $26,263.

Reserve champion under Adan Banuelos in the 2019 NCHA Futurity, Twice In Santiago LTE $256,587 was bred and is owned by Double Dove Ranch, Fort Worth, Tex. The Once In A Blu Boon daughter, half-sister to seven earners of $996,445, including Pedel To The Metall LTE $270,033, also shown by Banuelos, has claimed four major 2020 Open reserve championships: NCHA Derby, Arbuckle Mountain, Cattlemens Derby, and West Texas Derby.

Adan Banuelos is the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $3,352,216.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

High Brow Lady Boon wins Brazos Bash Open Classic

Monday, September 21st, 2020

High Brow Lady Boon won the Brazos Bash Open Classic championship with 225 points under Matt Miller, on September 21 in Weatherford. Tex. Summer Time Fun and James Payne, who immediately followed Miller and High Brow Lady Boon in the second set of the 17-horse finals, scored 224 points for the reserve championship, while Rollz Royce and Beau Galyean placed third with 223 points. The top three Classic finalists received payouts of $20,000, $18,000, and $16,000, respectively.

Owned and bred and by Texas Holy Cow Performance Horses of Weatherford, Tex., 5-year-old High Brow Lady Boon LTE $56,903, by High Brow Cat, is the first money earner out of RBR Lady Boon $87,550, by Peptoboonsmal. High Brow Lady Boon and Miller came to the Brazos Bash following a fifth-place Cotton Stakes Classic finish earlier this month, and earned go-round scores of 221 and 222 points coming into the Brazos Bash finals. Last year, High Brow Lady Boon and Miller won the Cattlemen’s 4-Year-Old Derby.

Matt Miller is the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $3,737,109. In 2017, he won the Brazos Bash 3-Year-Old Open championship riding Graces CD LTE $39,365, by High Brow CD.

Summer Time Fun LTE $137,242 and James Payne won the 2019 NCHA Derby and also placed fourth in this year’s NCHA Classic Challenge; Kathleen Moore, also won the 2020 West Texas Futurity 5/6 Non-Pro and placed third in the Cattlemen’s 5/6 Non-Pro on the mare. Bred and owned by Ty Moore of Madill, Okla., 5-year-old Summer Time Fun, by Metallic Cat, is out of Hey Georgy Girl LTE $130,829, the dam of 12 earners of $526,699, including Summer Time Fun’s full brother Let Georgie Do It $146,017.

James Payne, the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $3,592,819, won the Brazos Bash Classic in 2018 on PG Heavily Armed LTE $263,735, by Playgun, and the 2016 Brazos Bash Futurity on Ichis Snicker Doodle LTE $51,851, by Cat Ichi.

Together 6-year-old Rollz Royce LTE $339,014 and Beau Galyean have compiled an impressive list of championship wins, including the 2018 Brazos Bash Derby, the 2019 NCHA Super Stakes Classic and the 2019  NCHA Classic Challenge. This year they have claimed major 5/6 wins in the Cattlemen’s Derby, the Bonanza, and the Ike Hamilton Futurity, as well as reserves in the West Texas Futurity and the Cotton Stakes.

Sired by Dual Smart Rey, Rollz Royce is owned by Thomas Guinn of Philadelphia, Miss., and was bred by Royce Stalcup out of the unshown High Brow Cat daughter Show Biz Kitty, dam of four earners of $934,393, including Badboonarising LTE $318,279, by Once In A Blu Boon, and SS Blacks Lil Kitty $187,137.  

Beau Galyean, the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $4,315,248, also won the 2017 Brazos Bash Classic on Metallic Rebel LTE $411,837, who he showed as 2017 NCHA Open Horse of the Year.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

Overtheboonforyou claims Brazos Bash Futurity championship

Sunday, September 20th, 2020

Overtheboonforyou and Sean Flynn scored 225 points to win $20,000 as the 3-Year-Old Open Champion of the Brazos Bash, on September 20, in Weatherford, Tex. Double Zee, with 222 points under Tatum Rice, claimed $17,000 as reserve champion, as well as $2,705 as Gelding champion, while Metallic Envy and Eddie Flynn placed third with 220 points in the 10-horse finals. 

Owned by Joe Wood, Heber Springs, Ark., Overtheboonforyou LTE $34,801 won the Cotton Stakes under Flynn earlier this month, and was also a finalist in the West Texas Futurity. The Once In A Blu Boon daughter was bred by Pine Island Ranch out of Toni The Tigress LTE $96,059, a High Brow Cat daughter and co-reserve champion, with Matt Gaines, of the 2008 Brazos Bash 4-Year-Old Open.

Sean Flynn is the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $2,766,930.

Double Zee LTE $45,149 is owned by his breeders Kevin and Sydney Knight, Weatherford, Tex. The gelded son of Reyzin The Cash came to the Brazos Bash following a championship win with Tatum Rice in the West Texas Futurity, and a reserve championship from the Idaho Futurity.

Double Zee is a three-quarter brother to the Dual Rey daughter Crey Zee LTE $343,285, also owned and bred by the Knights. Crey Zee was the 2018 NCHA Futurity Open champion under Rice, as well as 2019 NCHA Open Horse of the Year. Her dam, Eazee E LTE $211,145, was also reserve champion of the 2015 Brazos Bash Classic with Rice, as well as 2017 NCHA Open Reserve World Champion.

Tatum Rice is the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $2,522,813.

This was the first NCHA payday for Metallic Envy, who earned $14,000 for her Brazos Bash Futurity third-place finish. Owned by Tanja Allen of Killeen, Tex., and bred by Sadye Simpson, Nemo, Tex., Metallic Envy, by Metallic Cat is out of the Dual Rey daughter Royal Reyda LTE $21,479, dam of both NCHA and NRCHA earners.

Eddie Flynn is the NCHA Hall of Fame earner of $2,740,508.

The Brazos Bash continues through Sept. 27.

Sam Shepard 1946 – 2020

Wednesday, September 16th, 2020

When Sam Shepard, 74, of Verbena, Ala., lost his battle with cancer on September 22, the cutting horse world not only lost a champion, but a devoted friend, mentor and advocate. Shepard was inducted into the NCHA Members Hall of Fame in 2015, after he had earned entry into the Riders Hall of Fame in 2002, and served as president of NCHA in 1992 and 1993.

“The one single thing that I like most about cutting is the people,” said Shepard. “I’ve met so many interesting people from so many different walks of life.”

Raised on a small peanut farm in southeastern Alabama, Shepard was introduced to cutting horses while in college. But he had already graduated and established a career as Director of Vocational Schools for the State of Alabama, in the early 1970s, before he joined NCHA as a non-pro and began to train and show his own horses.

 “I won a second the first time I ever showed” he said. “They had a big open cutting in Dothan, Alabama on the first of January and there were 47 horses in the class. I’ll never forget it. Of course I was hooked and I’ve never gotten over it.”

Although Shepard continued to ride locally in weekend events during the 1970s, he was drawn to limited age events. “I tried it a time or two, but even on a good salary, I really couldn’t afford to play the game,” he explained. “In order to ride young horses, I came to the realization that the only way I could do it was to ride somebody else’s horses, because I couldn’t afford $15,000 or $20,000 for just a decent colt.”

As a successful non-pro weekend competitor, Shepard was well known on the Southeast circuit, so when he turned in his non-pro card he had few problems acquiring clients, and for three years he juggled a full-time job and training horses for clients.

“I went from three or four horses of my own to having ten or fifteen that I had to ride,” he recalled. “I had three part-time helpers that came in the afternoon, when I got off of work, and we worked horses until midnight. Then I got up at six the next morning and went to work. I did that for about a year and I was wearing myself pretty thin. I had to decide whether I wanted to go on with the horses.”

Shepard’s boss with the State of Alabama offered to give him a leave of absence for one year. He could try cutting full-time for a year, but still have the option to return to his job, if things did not work out. But given the opportunity to devote full time to cutting, Shepard had a steady stream of limited age event money earners and he never looked back. And it was Desire Some Freckles, owned by Rockin 5 Ranch of Fairhope, Ala., champion of the 2001 NCHA Classic/Challenge, who gave him his first notoriety.

“That was the first major event that I’d won in Fort Worth,” said Shepard of the 2001 Classic Challenge. “The first stepping stones as a trainer is to try and make the semi-finals and the finals of one of the major events in Fort Worth.”

Shepard maintained his edge in Fort Worth, but never lost his love for the Southeast limited age and regional events, where he won the Southern Futurity, Augusta Futurity, and NCHA Eastern National Championships multiple times.

 “The disadvantage to living outside of Fort Worth and Weatherford is that it’s like baseball and every game is away from home,” Shepard noted. “But (NCHA) has to have trainers somewhere in addition to Weatherford. There are people all over the United States who want to ride and show and who enjoy doing it. Thank goodness we’ve got trainers everywhere that there is an interest. I think that is vital in keeping our organization as strong as it is.”

Cutting was also a family affair for Shepard, whose sons Austin and Harris are both trainers and have worked closely with their father. Austin, 43, an NCHA Hall of Fame Rider and one of the sport’s all-time leading money earners, has his own training facility in Summerdale, Ala., and Harris, 26, lives in Verbena.

Past memories and memories-in-the-making were also an important part of the cutting experience for Shepard. “Through these horses, we have so many exhilarating moments and so many terribly disappointing moments, too,” he said. “But those lows are what make those highs seem so good and make it fun. I wouldn’t change anything.”