Alexis Stephas wins Non-Pro Eastern National Championship

March 16th, 2018

Alexis Stephas on Once You Go Black. Hart Photography.

2017 NCHA Eastern National Championships – March 16, 2018 Jackson, Miss.

Alexis Stephas, Chattanooga, Tenn., carried the NCHA Eastern Nationals Non-Pro Finals with a 217.5-point championship win on Once You Go Black. Amanda Standish, Baton Rouge, La., scored 216.5 points for the reserve title riding Divas On Time, and Jordan Thompson, Crossville, Tenn. placed third with 216 points on Hard Eight BBQ.

Stephas and Standish each qualified two horses for the 16-horse finals. Stephas also showed Ima Little Ichi, by Cat Ichi, to split 4/5 with Kolby Don Moore, and Standish, on Im Countin Starz, by Im Countin Checks, split 8/10 with Lew Byars and Mike Bowman.

Stephas, an NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame member and earner of $683,339, placed third in the 2016 NCHA $25,000 Novice Non-Pro standings with Once You Go Black and third in the 2013 NCHA $15,000 Novice Non-Pro standings on Ima Little Ichi. Nine-year-old Once You Go Black LTE $185,083, by Hydrive Cat, has been shown almost exclusively by Stephas, although Cullen Chartier showed him to win the 2015 NCHA Western Nationals Open and place in five other events. Twelve-year-old Ima Little Ichi LTE $278,401 has been a finalist in 11 Eastern Nationals divisions, including in 2014 and 2016, when he carried Christopher Little and Garrett Hampton, respectively, to win the Senior Youth championships.

Amanda Standish on Divas On Time. Hart Photography.

Amanda Standish and 10-year-old Divas On Time LTE $169,717, by One Time Pepto, won the NCHA Eastern Nationals Non-Pro championship in 2014 and the $50,000 Amateur championship in 2016. This year 6-year-old Im Countin Starz has also put Standish in the spotlight with wins in the Augusta Futurity 5/6 Amateur Unlimited, as well as the Ike Hamilton Futurity 5/6 Amateur Unlimited and Non-Pro Limited. Standish and Im Countin Starz claimed the reserve champion title in the Ike Hamilton Futurity 5/6 Non-Pro.

Jordan Thompson and 10-year-old Hard Eight BBQ, LTE $93,659, by Boonlight Dancer, won Friday’s first go-round of the NCHA Eastern Nationals Non-Pro division with 218 points. Thompson was reserve champion in 2011 of the NCHA Eastern Nationals Junior Youth riding Cats Rascal, and a Non-Pro finalist in 2014 on Hard Eight BBQ, as well as last year on One Gone Cat. Her brother Cameron has also shown Hard Eight BBQ in four Eastern Nationals finals, including last year when he placed third in the Non-Pro finals.