A crop of brand-new 4-year-olds was on display January 17 at the AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge held at the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo in Fort Worth, Texas.
The top three horses in the headline 4-year-old working ranch horse class were all by the 18-year-old WR This Cats Smart, a son of High Brow Cat who stands at the Four Sixes Ranch in Guthrie, Texas. Heading the talented group of youngsters was Smart Ladies Sparkle, a sorrel filly guided by Matt Koch to win the 4-year-old working ranch horse class.
Smart Ladies Sparkle is out of the Shining Spark mare Shiners Diamond Lady. Bred by Zoetis Best Remuda winner Wagonhound Land & Livestock, she is owned by Thad and Kristen York of Saratoga, Wyoming.
Shiners Diamond Lady was bred by AQHA Hall of Fame member Carol Rose, and was acquired by Wagonhound in 2012. Smart Ladies Sparkle is the mare’s second foal; her first is full sibling Shiners Diamond Cat, who won last year’s NRCHA Derby and has earned $125,932.
The two horses have a yearling full sibling, a filly named Smart Lookin Lady.
Finishing second in the class was Myles Brown aboard his own Lost Creek Heaven.
Also a sorrel filly bred by Wagonhound, Lost Creek Heaven is out of the Seven From Heaven mare She Cat Seven. Last year, she earned more than $12,200 in National Reined Cow Horse Association competition.
She Cat Seven has a unique pedigree, featuring a cross of the Playgun stallion Seven From Heaven on the race-bred mare Fly She Cat Fly. Fly She Cat Fly is by American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame stallion Strawfly Special and out of the mare She Cat Tiger, a daughter of another Hall of Fame race horse, Streakin Six.
Third in the class was WR Gin, ridden by Cole Hatfield. This sorrel gelding was bred and is owned by Burnett Ranches LLC and is out of the Paddys Irish Whiskey mare Paddys Gin.
Limited Open 4-Year-Old Working Ranch Horse
While they were third in the open division, WR Gin and Cole Hatfield topped the limited open class.
Finishing second was Shawn Holden with Spoonfuls Snap Shot. The bay roan gelding was bred and is owned by M-Heart Corp. of Vinton, Louisiana, and is by Spoonful Of Sweets and out of the Playgun mare PG Snap Shot.
Third in the class was MC Cowhammer with Trevor Carter aboard. While he is freshly turned 4, MC Cowhammer is already a Ranching Heritage Challenge winner – last year he won a ranch riding class, the only class he was eligible for. Now he is old enough to contest the working ranch horse classes, and picked up a check for breeder and owner Bogle Bros. LLC of Dexter, New Mexico, which is also a Zoetis Best Remuda winner. The red roan stallion is by Metallic Cat and out of the Playgun mare Gunsmart Gay. He has earned more than $6,000 in NRCHA competition.
5- and 6-Year-Old Working Ranch Horse
A pair of familiar faces topped this class, as Playin Motown started off his 6-year-old year with this class win.
Guided by Ben Baldus, the amenable sorrel gelding stepped up for a big win in a tough class. He is by Mr Playinstylish and out of the Mr Peponita Flo mare Mo Flo. Bred by the partnership of Moncrief and Tennison, Playin Motown is owned by Catelyn Walker of Prairie Grove, Arkansas. He has earned more than $8,600 in his career.
Finishing second is the stallion Quahadi and Boyd Rice. The red roan stallion is bred and owned by Burnett Ranches LLC, and is by Bet Hesa Cat and out of the Tanquery Gin mare Ginnin Attraction. He has earned more than $26,000 in NRCHA and AQHA competition.
Third was Matt Koch aboard Opus Cat Olena. The 5-year-old stallion is another Wagonhound-bred son of WR This Cats Smart, he being out of the Smart Chic Olena mare Opus Chic. Opus Cat Olena is owned by past Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder of the Year Box O Quarter Horses, and is the 2018 world champion junior working cow horse with more than $65,000 in career earnings.
Limited 5- and 6-Year-Old Working Ranch Horse
Rick Chayer nicked the top two places in the limited division of the class.
First was with Justa Genuine Shine, a red dun gelding by Justa Genuine Jack and out of the Shining Spark mare Shes More Shine. The horse was bred and is owned by Timothy C. Fitzgerald of Shreveport, Louisiana, who has seen the horse earn Top-10 finishes in both Adequan® Level 2 junior heeling and Level 2 ranch riding at the Lucas Oil AQHA World Championship Show, and earn paychecks in multiple association competitions.
Rick was second aboard the golden mare Seven S Delightful for breeder and owner Terry Stuart Forst of Waurika, Oklahoma.
The 5-year-old mare is by CD Lights and out of the Genuine Doc mare Seven S Genuine Miss.
Cowboy Working Ranch Horse
Myles Brown wheeled back to take the cowboy class with a familiar friend, his family’s 7-year-old gelding Ima Wynna RAB.
The PG Shogun gelding was bred by Rob A. Brown, and has earned more than $34,000 in his career that includes AQHA, Ranching Heritage Challenges, NRCHA and Ranch Horse Association of America competition.
Ima Wynna RAB is out of the Right On Tivio mare Right On Eddie RAB.
Second in the class was the 13-year-old mare Toys Jerry Maxi, ridden by Kye Fuston for Sarco Creek Ranch of Victoria, Texas. The mare was bred by Billy Cogdell of Tulia, Texas, and is by Smart Little Jerry and out of the Maxi Lena mare Maxis Yellow Hair. She has more than $7,300 in combined earnings across competitions that including Ranching Heritage Challenges, Ranch Horse Association of America, Stock Horse of Texas, NCHA and NRCHA.
Third was WR Gin and Cole Hatfield.
Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Myles and Ima Wynna RAB returned to pick up victory in a salty amateur working ranch horse.
Finishing second were Sinful Merada and Parke Greeson. The 5-year-old sorrel mare is owned by the Greeson family’s Sarco Creek Ranch, and has NRCHA earnings of more than $19,000. She was bred by Cowan Select Horses LLC of Havre, Montana, and is by Cats Merada and out of the Docs Stylish Oak mare Sinful Style. Her dam is a half sister to Sinful Cat, an earner of more than $105,000 in NRCHA and NCHA competition, and This Cats Sinful, a successful Ranching Heritage and NRCHA competitor with more than $24,000 in earnings.
Finishing third was OTP Rio and Jeremy Gugelmeyer of Dalhart, Texas. OTP Rio is by One Time Pepto and out of the Doc’s Hickory mare Hickorys Tornado Rio bred by Dan Churchill of Moline, Illinois. The 8-year-old red roan gelding has earned more than $10,000 in competition.
Level 1 Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Eric Stevenson of Spur, Texas, captured the top two podium positions in this class.
Finishing first was Becaco Magnum 357, a 6-year-old bay gelding by CD Son Of Magnolia and out of the Mr Haida Flo mare Ms Becaco Panchoflo. The gelding was bred by Beggs Cattle Co. of Fort Worth, Texas, and has four-figure earnings in competition.
Eric was second with Fletch My Gun (Royal Fletch-Lean Little Lena by Smart Little Lena), an 8-year-old gelding bred by Kit and Charlie Moncrief of Fort Worth.
Limited Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Level 1 Limited Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Another Mr Playinstylish gelding won the limited amateur working ranch horse class and also the Level 1 division of the class – this being Hondo Playinstylish ridden by Jimmy Lee Vick.
The horse is owned by Jimmy Lee and Amy Vick’s Prairie Point Ranch at Liberty Hill, Texas. He was bred by Burnett Ranches LLC, and was bought in utero by the Vicks, who now own dam Hondo Canyon Rose and foaled and raised him. The 7-year-old sorrel has numerous accomplishments and earnings, including being the amateur ranch riding winner at the 2018 Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge Finals.
Finishing second in the limited amateur was Larry Walker of Prairie Grove, Arkansas, and Boots Be Tuff (Woody Be Tuff-Pretty Poco Boots by Doc O Boots). The 9-year-old gelding was bred by the W.T. Waggoner Estate of Vernon, Texas, and has more than $26,000 in competition earnings.
Third in the limited amateur was Kathleen Grayson and another Waggoner-bred, this the 8-year-old gelding Do Berry (Cat Man Do-Custom Red Berry by Custom Crome).
Finishing second in the Level 1 limited amateur was SCC Lilpeppyhancock (Hancocks Last Lena-Chata Bo Peep by Bobby Bo Badger) and owner Brittney Ferguson of Joshua, Texas. The 2008 gelding was bred by Snodgrass Cattle Co. of Joshua, Texas.
Third in the Level 1 limited amateur was Spade Little Ranger (Range Delivery-Spade Little Prissy by Freckles Little Pep) and Kala Lea Roe. The 9-year-old bay mare is owned by Sliding JK Performance Horses of Seguin, Texas, and was bred by Chappell Spade Ranch of Lubbock, Texas.
Youth Working Ranch Horse
Level 1 Youth Working Ranch Horse
Benjamin Self rode Smart Kwackin Boon to two wins – in the youth working ranch horse class, and also the Level 1 youth working ranch horse class.
Benjamin guided the good sorrel mare, who has been owned by his family since 2013. The 10-year-old mare was bred by Best Remuda winner Singleton Ranches of Lamy, New Mexico, and is by Peptoboonsmal and out of the Smart Chic Olena mare Smart Crackin Chic. Smart Kwackin Boon has NRCHA and Ranching Heritage earnings, and the pair are Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show finalists.
Finishing second were world champions Trail Townsend and TRR Lucky Playgun (Pepcid-TRR Ms Lucky Gun by Playgun), a 10-year-old gelding bred by Best Remuda winner Tongue River Ranch of Paducah, Texas, and owned by Trail’s dad, Tripp.
Playin Quanah (Playin Stylish-Cynthia Anne by Tanquery Gin) and Claire Elizabeth Guynes of Argyle, Texas, were third. The 14-year-old gelding was bred by Burnett Ranches.
Limited Youth Working Ranch Horse
After winning the 5- and 6-year-old class with his trainer, Playin Motown won the limited youth class with owner Catelyn Walker.
Charles Lee and Sassy Greyt Lady (Greyt Whiz-Sassy Lady Zero by Poco Tuck Zero) were second. The Waggoner Ranch-bred mare is owned by Charles’ mother, Amy, and they hail from McAllen, Texas.
Claire Elizabeth Guynes and Playin Quanah were third in this class, too.
Level 1 Limited Youth Working Ranch Horse
The R.A. Brown Ranch-bred Shesa Eddie Rey RAB topped the Level 1 limited youth working ranch horse with owner Saryn Paulsen aboard.
Bred by the Best Remuda-winning Brown Ranch, the 4-year-old mare is by Sun O Lena Rey and is out of the Hesa Eddie Hancock mare Shesa Eddie Rock.
Charles Lee and Sassy Greyt Lady were second in the class.
Third was Christina Weatherford and WWR Ms King Gist (Gists Fifty King-Bar Five Grayway 912 by Sonoita Whopper Glo). Christina got the 2014 mare from breeders Fred and Elaine Gist of Midland, Texas, through the Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder Young Horse Development Program. The pair worked through the program and are now competing.
Open Ranch Riding
In addition to grabbing a check at his first opportunity in the working ranch horse class, MC Cowhammer continued his winning ways in the ranch riding class. New Mexico horseman Trevor Carter rode the horse for breeder and owner Bogle Bros. LLC.
Natures Law (Natural Enterprise-Pocos Jurisprudence by Taris Judge) and Jane Bagley were second. The 4-year-old mare is a homebred for the Dimmitt, Texas, ranchers.
Amateur Julia Winders was third in the open with Dualinwiththeladies (Dualwithme-SCR Ginnin Lady by The Hot Express). The 12-year-old gelding was bred by Best Remuda winner Singleton Ranches.
Amateur Ranch Riding
Third in the open, Dualinwiththeladies and Julia Winders of Canyon, Texas, won the amateur ranch riding.
Finishing second was Hondo Playinstylish (Mr Playinstylish-Hondo Canyon Rose by Tanquery Gin) and Jimmy Lee Vick.
Boots Be Tuff (Woody Be Tuff-Pretty Poco Boots by Doc O Boots) was third with Larry Walker aboard.
Youth Ranch Riding
Tell Bagley guided Natures Law to win the youth ranch riding. The young man’s family bred the mare on their West Texas ranch, and his mom finished second on the mare in the open.
Trail Townsend was second aboard TRR Lucky Playgun (Pepcid-TRR Ms Lucky Gun by Playgun), and Benjamin Self was third with Smart Kwackin Boon (Peptoboonsmal-Smart Crackin Chic by Smart Chic Olena).