Ranching Heritage Challenge in Amarillo

Horses from the Four Sixes dominate during the Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge at the Tri-State Fair in Amarillo.

The American Quarter Horse Journal

Dusty Burson rides Paddys Prince to the open and limited open titles September 13 for the Four Sixes Ranch during the Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge at the Tri-State Fair in Amarillo. (Larri Jo Starkey photo) For more photos from the event, scroll to the slideshow below.

Dusty Burson didn’t just have a good day September 14.

He had a very good day at the Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge at the Amarillo Tri-State Fair.

The 25-year-old cowboy from the Four Sixes Ranch in Guthrie, Texas, rode Paddys Prince the open and limited open 4-year-old working ranch horse classes, then coolly stepped aboard Playin With Pick to win the limited open 5/6-year-old class.

The challenge was sponsored by Zoetis, Bar-G Feedyards, Professional’s Choice and Double J Saddlery. In addition to bragging rights, $15,000 in added money was up for grabs in ranch pleasure, boxing and working ranch horse classes.

“(Paddys Prince is) pretty laid back and easy to get along with,” Dusty said. “He’s got a real good attitude. His ability and consistency make him easy every day.”

Dusty and the 4-year-old gelding also won the limited open 4-year-old class August 28 at the challenge during the Colorado State Fair in Pueblo.

“I picked ‘Chino’ as a 2-year-old,” Dusty said. “He’s super gentle, and anybody can ride him. He’s pretty cool to ride. I really like him. I feel blessed getting to ride him and the success we’ve had.”

Paddys Prince is a 2010 bay gelding by Playin Attraction and out of Cowgirl Paddy by Paddys Irish Whiskey. He was bred and is owned by Burnett Ranches of Fort Worth.

“I really like these Ranching Heritage Challenges,” Dusty said. “They’re my favorite kind of show to go to.”

Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenges are exclusively for horses bred by AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeders. In the marquee 4-year-old working ranch horse class, horses must have been nominated to the challenge program.

In the working ranch horse class, riders complete a short reining pattern, then a cow is turned into the arena. The riders “box” the cow by working it on the short end of the arena before turning it both ways on the long fence. The riders complete the run by roping and stopping the cow.

Trevor Carter of Clovis, New Mexico, was giving the challenge format a try for the first time when he won the cowboy class with AR Stuck On Smart.

“I love it,” Trevor said. “I enjoy the folks who are involved in it. They’ve got great horses and great competition. It’s good to see the cowboys come out and compete against each other.”

The cowboy class is for ranch owners, their family members and their employees.

“My horse came in and was looking around a little bit at the stands,” Trevor said. “He was a little distracted but he followed me and I was able to shape him up through all the maneuvers. He just had a lot of try, and when the cow came, I knew that all day long the cattle had been hunting the fence on the west end, so I tried to get down on the fence and get out of the ground a lot quicker than I been.”

That strategy paid off.

“I had a good turn, and then I was lucky enough that my rope went over and we got him stopped,” Trevor said.

Trevor also showed Oat Power in all the classes he was eligible for throughout the day.

“I have good horses, and I was lucky enough to get to show them in multiple classes so they got experience,” Trevor said. “It was fun seeing everybody going in and out, and I think the horse just improved as the day went on.”

AR Stuck On Smart is a 2006 bay gelding by Ill Be Smart and out of Colonel Ann by Colonel Freckles. He was bred by Atwood Quarter Horses of Kenwood, California, and he was a surprise gift from Trevor’s wife, Tara.

“She wasn’t my wife at the time, but since she gave me the horse, I had to marry her,” Trevor joked. “I tried to buy this horse as a 2-year-old, and he was sold to another lady, and I told them that I wanted to buy the horse whether he was 3 or 20. She called up and my wife answered the phone and said she’d buy him and surprised me with him and I’ve had him ever since.”

He’s called “Chance” for the second chance, Trevor added.

After a full day of classes, most of the exhibitors took the opportunity to socialize during a reception at the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame.

The next Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge is September 27 during the National Reined Cow Horse Association Snaffle Bit Futurity in Reno, Nevada. Another challenge October 17 during the Northern International Livestock Exposition in Billings, Montana, will conclude the series for 2014.

Amateur Ranch Horse Pleasure
Kim Lindsey of Dickens, Texas, on Judys Ten, a 2006 buckskin gelding by Ten O Sea and out of Crows Judy by Black Chick Gold. Bred by Dana and Bill Smith of Spur, Texas, and owned by Kim.

Open Ranch Horse Pleasure
Circle Bar Cutthepay, a 2008 gray mare by Circle Bar Pistol and out of Quanahs Jewel by Quanah O Lena. Bred by Circle Bar Ranch of Crowell, Texas, owned by Reba Rogers of San Antonio, Texas, and ridden by AQHA Professional Horseman Bozo Rogers.

Amateur Ranch Boxing
Christina Lee of North Platte, Nebraska, on Lees Doc O Sunrise, a 2005 gray stallion by Docs Croton Lobo and out of Watch This Sunrise by Sunrise Enterprise. Owned and bred by Bryan Lee of North Platte.

Open Working Ranch 4-Year-Old
Paddys Prince, a 2010 bay gelding by Playin Attraction and out of Cowgirl Paddy by Paddys Irish Whiskey. Owned and bred by Burnett Ranches of Fort Worth. Shown by Dusty Burson of Guthrie, Texas.

Limited Open Working Ranch 4-Year-Old
Paddys Prince, a 2010 bay gelding by Playin Attraction and out of Cowgirl Paddy by Paddys Irish Whiskey. Owned and bred by Burnett Ranches. Shown by Dusty Burson.

Open Working Ranch 5/6-Year-Old
Sixes Blue Powder, a 2009 gray stallion by Sixes Pick and out of Blue Gunpowder Ms by PG Gunpowder. Owned and bred by Burnett Ranches. Shown by Chance O’Neal of Guthrie.

Limited Open Working Ranch 5/6-Year-Old
Playin With Pick, a 2008 sorrel mare by Playin Attraction and out of Natural Pick by Tenino Badger. Owned and bred by Burnett Ranches. Shown by Dusty Burson.

Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Kim Lindsey of Dickens, on Judys Ten, a 2006 buckskin gelding by Ten O Sea and out of Crows Judy by Black Chick Gold. Bred by Dana and Bill Smith of Spur, Texas, and owned by Kim.

Limited Amateur Working Ranch Horse
Baru Spiller of Wingate, Texas, on Dolly Jos Shadow, a 2010 black mare by Josephs Gold and out of La Poco Dolly by Ricochet Tucker. Bred by Randall Andrews of Lubbock, Texas, and owned by Baru.

Cowboy Working Ranch Horse
AR Stuck On Smart, a 2006 bay gelding by Ill Be Smart and out of Colonel Ann by Colonel Freckles. Bred by Atwood Quarter Horses of Kenwood, California, and owned and shown by Trevor Carter of Clovis, New Mexico.