Jaira McKeown owned $15,000 Amateur championship with 219 points

June 27th, 2019
Jaira McKeown on Metallic Whisper. Ted Petit Photography.

Jaira McKeown, Minden, Nev., won the NCHA Transwest Western Nationals $15,000 Amateur Finals with a definitive 219 points on Metallic Whisper. Laine Jenlink, Cherokee, Okla., scored 217 for the reserve championship on Dangerous Cat, while Samantha Cajka, Lincoln, Neb., placed third with 213.5 points riding CR Spoonful of Lucy.

This was the second year for McKeown, the NCHA earner of $3,878, to show in an NCHA Nationals event. Last year, she rode Metallic Whisper to place fifth in the Western Nationals $2,000 Limited Rider Finals. Eight-year-old Metallic Whisper LTE $6,184, by Metallic Cat, had previously placed third under Jason Diaz in the 2017 Utah Futurity 5/6 Open Limited.

Laine Jenlink on Dangerous Cat. Ted Petit Photography.

Laine Jenlink , the NCHA earner of $5,201, was showing in her first major event finals. Dangerous Cat LTE $52,122, a son of WR This Cats Smart and NCHA Classic Challenge champion Sarenadual, was an Open finalist in last year’s NCHA Super Stakes with Hall of Fame Rider James Payne.

The $15,000 Amateur Finals marked the second appearance on Thursday for Samantha Cajka and CR Spoonful of Lucy that day. In the morning, the pair competed in the $50,000 Amateur division where they placed fifteenth. Last year, they also competed in the $15,000 Amateur and the $50,000 Amateur Finals, and in 2017, placed third in the NCHA Denver Nationals $2,000 Limited Rider Finals. Eight-year-old CR Spoonful Of Lucy LTE $36,828, bred by Center Ranch, is a daughter of Hes A Peptospoonful and a half-sister to CR Tuff Lucy LTE $379,774.