Wednesday, July 26 wrapped up three days of the NCHA Summer Spectacular Classic Challenge Amateur/Unlimited Amateur go-round. Thirty-four riders with 214 points or higher advanced to the Amateur Finals, to be held on Thursday, July 27, following the NCHA Derby Amateur Finals; 30 riders with scores of 215.5 points or higher advanced to the Unlimited Amateur Finals, to be held on Friday morning, July 28.
Ryan Smith, Royce City, Tex., topped Wednesday’s action, as well as the full field of Amateur contenders, with 218.5 points on Reys CD II. Smith and the 6-year-old Dual Rey gelding placed fifth in the 2017 NCHA Super Stakes 5/6 Amateur Finals, after claiming reserve in the 2017 Abilene Spectacular Amateur Classic and placing third in the 2017 Bonanza Classic Amateur.
Reys CD II, the earner of $49,228, is a half-brother, out of Sweet Little CD, to leading sire High Brow CD LTE $502,202 and Sweet Little Cats LTE $212,095. Ryan Smith is the lifetime earner of $100,262.
Blake Pattillo, St. Elmo, Ill., an Unlimited Amateur entrant, earned 218 points on Wednesday, the day’s second-highest score, as well as the second-highest score from all go-round contenders. Pattillo, the NCHA earner of $93,830, rode 6-year-old Mister Metallica LTE $60,201. Together, Pattillo and his Metallic Cat gelding have competed in the finals of 16 limited age events, including the 2015 NCHA Derby Amateur and the 2016 NCHA Super Stakes Classic Unlimited Amateur. Most recently they claimed the Unlimited Amateur 5/6 reserve championship at The Non-Pro Cutting.
Pattillo also owns TC Will, the 6-year-old gelding his son Langston showed on Tuesday to earn 218 points, as an Amateur entry.
Other high-scoring riders on Wednesday included Wendy Degroot, Ontario, Can., with 217.5 points as an Unlimited Amateur, riding Smooth Nudge LTE $29,053, by Spots Hot. Degroot, the NCHA earner of $40,659, won the 2015 Unlimited Amateur 5/6 championship in The Non-Pro Cutting on TS Reys N Cats.
Michael Wood, Combine, Tex., secured both the Classic Challenge Amateur and Unlimited Amateur Finals on Wednesday with a score of 218 points on 5-year-old Looking For Caviar LTE $101,297, by WR This Cats Smart. Wood, the NCHA earner of $32,195, and Looking For Caviar most recently placed in the Amateur and Unlimited Amateur divisions of the 2017 PCCHA Derby Classic.
Katherine Vanboekel, Ontario, Can., also scored 2017 on Wednesday to qualify for the Unlimited Amateur Finals. Vanboekel, the NCHA earner of $88,227, is riding Wendels Little Missy LTE $121,997, a 5-year-old High Brow CD daughter., who carried Vanboekel to win both the 5/6 Amateur Unlimited championship and the Amateur reserve championship of the 2017 Breeders Invitational.