Archive for September, 2011

Lenas Star War captures Brazos Derby

Thursday, September 29th, 2011

Tarin Rice

Lenas Star War and Tarin Rice topped a field of 25 four-year-olds on Wednesday in the Brazos Bash Derby, Weatherford, Tex. The 220-point win earned the second championship title and $22,000 for the pair, who took the NCHA Derby Open Gelding title last July in Fort Worth.

Reycy Moon, with Matt Gaines, marked 219 and Justa Lil Blue, under Roger Wagner, marked 218 for second and third.

Lenas Star War is owned by his breeder, Brenda Michael, of Amarillo, Tex. Michael owns both the gelding’s sire, Lenas Busy Bee, and dam, Lena Leo War Lady, the earner of over $160,000 under Michael and trainer Brady Bowen.

“This is his mother’s last colt, so he’s pretty special to Brenda,” said Rice, 22, who started and trained Lenas Star War. “He’s smooth-moving and travels real low, and he can trap a cow.”

The NCHA Derby Gelding championship was the first open title for Rice, youngest son of leading open rider Boyd Rice.

On Tuesday, leading money earner Dont Look Twice scored 223.5 points for her tenth major 2011 win, under Phil Rapp in the Brazos Bash Classic. Intention Del Rey, by TR Dual Rey, and Lloyd Cox placed second with 223 points.

Dont Look Twice, sired by High Brow Cat and owned by Louis and Corliss Baldwin’s Waco Bend Ranch, is ranked fourth among cutting’s all-time leading females money earners with over $600,000.

Rapp also tied for second and third in the Brazos Bash Futurity with 218 points on New Cut In Town. Smooth Jolena, ridden by Casey Morris for Bobby and Francie Butler, won the division with 218.5 Princess Spoonfull; and Craig Thompson also scored 218 points.

For full charts of all open finals with pedigrees, click here.

Strong domestic market at Keeneland Sale

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

Keeneland’s Thoroughbred Yearling Sale, held September 11-24, attracted a global contingent of buyers representing 29 countries. The six yearlings that sold for $1 million or more, however, were all purchased by American buyers.

Gross receipts for the 13-day sale totaled $223,487,800 for 2,921 horses, an increase of 12.7 percent over last year’s sale, when 3,059 sold for $198,252,900.

The average price of $76,511 rose 18 percent from $64,810 in 2010, and the buyback rate of 20.8 percent dropped 22 percent from the 2010 rate.

“We are pleasantly surprised by the market being up pretty consistently throughout the sale,” said William Farish, of Land’s End Farm, the sale’s leading consignor with 335 yearlings for $27,437,000. “The decrease in (the size of) the foal crop, lower production costs, and lower stud fees, have given buyers a new sense of confidence.”

A colt by leading sire A.P. Indy was the high-seller of the sale at $1.4 million. Consigned by Hill ‘n Dale and purchased by a group that includes Robert Evans and John Amerman, the colt is out of the Deputy Minister mare Malka, from the family of Kentucky Derby winner Super Saver.

Frank Stronach’s Adena Springs purchased the second-highest seller, a $1.3 million colt by Awesome Again out of Legs Lawlor, a half-sister to 1997 Horse of the Year Favorite Trick. Stronach stands Awesome Again at Adena Springs in Kentucky. The colt was consigned by Greenwood Lodge Farm, owned by Bill McAlpin.

The high-selling filly of the sale, at $1.3 million, is a daughter of Unbridled out of the Storm Bird mare Lady of Choice, a half-sister to graded stakes winner Multiple Choice. Consigned by Dromoland Farm, she was purchased by Besilu Stables, owned by Benjamin Leon.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum topped the buyer’s list, paying $8,870,000 for 36 yearlings. He was followed closely by Benjamin Leon, who purchased 13 yearlings totaling $8,175,000, including two of the $1 million consignments.

2011 Brazos Bash

Tuesday, September 27th, 2011

NCHA Futurity Gold

Friday, September 23rd, 2011

Sheila and Buster Welch and Lindy Burch. Photo by Alan Gold

Buster and Sheila Welch were in Fort Worth on Thursday to reminisce about the NCHA Futurity, which celebrates its 50th edition from November 21 through December 10, at Will Rogers Memorial Center.

Buster won the first Futurity in 1962 and four more within the next 15 years, a record that has never been equaled – Money’s Glo in 1962; Chickasha Glo in 1963; Rey Jay’s Pete in 1966; Dry Doc in 1971; and Peppy San Badger in 1977.

Here are a few highlights from Lindy Burch’s interview with Buster and Sheila for an upcoming NCHA video – Lindy was the first woman to win the NCHA Futurity:

Buster: I won $3,800 in the first Futurity. Back then that would by you a four-door loaded Mercury.

Buster: I think King was one of the earliest (sires) that bred cow into Quarter Horses.

Buster: Every one of the horses that I won the Futurity on would have been competitive today.

Buster: There is very little difference in top horses, but that little difference is what counts.

Buster: You don’t win the Futurity without you’re horseback.

Buster: Like everything with livestock and horses, it’s all about the “feel.”

Sheila: I’d just get on them and show. I didn’t know their weaknesses and they didn’t know mine. If Buster trained one for himself, when I got on them, I felt like I could do anything. (Sheila won all three rounds of the NCHA World Finals on Peppy San Badger)

Sheila: I never saw (Buster) hurt a horse.

Buster: When I’m riding a good horse today working cattle, I feel like I’m on the A Team.

For an in depth history of the NCHA Futurity and the individual champions, see my latest book, available for pre-order before the Futurity – “Cutting Horse Gold: 50 Years of the NCHA Futurity.”

2011 El Rancho Futurity

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

2011 Cotton Stakes

Sunday, September 18th, 2011

Hats off to the first Red Raider

Saturday, September 17th, 2011

Joe Kirk Fulton from Texas Tech Archives

Joe Kirk Fulton blazed the trail in 1954, as the first mounted football mascot – Texas Tech University’s famous Red Raider. Fulton’s contribution to the Quarter Horse world, however, reaches well beyond his native Texas.

Peppy San Badger, a foundation sire of the modern cutting horse, was bred by Fulton, as were the earners of more than $16 million on the racetrack, including world champions Dashs Dream and Special Leader, and 72 other stakes winners.

Fulton, who has been raising Quarter Horses for 50 years and was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Association Hall of Fame this year, has bred and/or owned stallions that have sired the earners of more than $60 million.

Click here for a video interview of Fulton and film clips of him as the Red Raider.