Bet Hesa Cat tallies 439.5

March 31st, 2011
Bet Hesa Cat

Austin Shepard and Bet Hesa Cat.

Bet Hesa Cat, current leader in 2011 NCHA Open World Championship standings, and ridden by Austin Shepard for Bet Hesa Cat Syndicate, topped all Super Stakes Classic Open qualifiers with 439.5 cumulative points, following a 220.5-point performance in yesterday’s second go-round.

A Little Bossy and R.L. Chartier were within a nose of Bet Hesa Cat with 439 points (219.5 and 219.5) for Wrigley Ranches.

Chartier, who also qualified Smart Moria Boon for Wrigley Ranches, was one of three riders to gain the finals on two mounts. Shepard also qualified Spooked by A Cat for Buster Quirk, and Matt Budge qualfied Im Catman (438.5 points) for Reata Cutting Horses, and Play On Lizzy for Jackpot Ranch.

Im Catman is also up in today’s fourth set with non-pro rider Stephanie Haymes, while Lean On Rey, an open qualifier with Tag Rice, shows in the first set with owner Sam Good, and Smooth Asa Zee, open qualifier with John Mitchell, cuts in the seventh set with Glade Knight.

Spooky Smooth and Gary Gonsalves, for Iron Rose Ranch, won the second go-round with 222 points, while Prime Time Kat and Clint Allen claimed second place with 221, for Jerry and Vickie Durant.

Twenty-two horses with 434.5 points qualified for the 25-horse finals, with three slots to be determined by the outcome of the 20-plus Wildcard field on Friday, April 1.

Second go-round winner Spooky Smooth placed third in the 2010 NCHA Super Stakes Open Gelding finals, but Gary Gonzalves rated yesterday’s performance the Smooth As A Cat son’s best in Will Rogers Coliseum.

“I’ve never really gotten him shown well in this pen,” said Gonsalves. “I was really pleased today. We had a 215 (in the first go-round) and needed to come cut.”

R.L. Chartier and A Little Bossy, by CD Lights, made their mark in the first go-round with 219 points, then upped the ante with 219.5 in the second.

“I didn’t plan to go down there and do that,” said Chartier of yesterday’s performance. “But we cut some tough cows and the horse was good. He tries hard every time.

“He was injured at three and the first time we showed him was at the (2009) Super Stakes. He was green, but he’s come on strong this year.”