More Cow Horse Champions Crowned

Five more horses earn titles at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions in Fort Worth.

The American Quarter Horse Journal

Five more champions are crowned February 21 at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions. (Larri Jo Starkey photo) For more photos from the event, scroll to the slide show below. Did you take a photo at the event? Send it to Becky Newell at The best ones will appear in the Journal.

The National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions continued February 21 with five more champions crowned.

The event moved to Fort Worth, Texas, for 2014 after being in San Angelo, Texas, for several years.

“I think it’s great for our industry,” said trainer Ron Emmons of Ione, California. “The classes have been larger. The audience is bigger. Like they always say, location, location, location.”

The championship events are being run in the Will Rogers coliseum with warmups in the John Justin arena that once served as the home of the Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show.

“It’s such a good town for horse events, and the people who run this facility have been extremely nice to us and generous,” said trainer Jake Telford of Caldwell, Idaho. “Any time you move a show and your numbers almost double, like in the Derby, it’s obviously a good move. I’m really happy to be here.”

That wasn’t all Jake had to be happy about.

Riding Nabisco Roan, Jake was first in the open bridle competition, a title that has eluded the stallion for several years.

“The phrase ‘always a bridesmaid and never a bride’ – it kinda applies,” said Nancy Crawford Hall of Holy Cow Performance Horses, which owns the stallion. “He’s been second so many times because of one little thing or the other and it’s just so exciting for him to finally be on the top.”

Jake and “Triscuit” started the day in the penalty box in the reined work.

“I left the door open,” Jake said. “I took off in the wrong lead. I don’t know what I was thinking. I just didn’t set him up enough and he started off in the wrong lead and I had to change him really quick, so I started off in the penalty box. It really scared me, and I thought, ‘Well, I’m going to have to have a huge cow work.’”

Working fourth in the draw, Triscuit came through for Jake.

“I drew a good cow,” he said. “It didn’t start out very good and I thought when I was boxing, ‘This isn’t going to be enough cow to make up for my mistakes in the reined work,’ and it ended up being pretty good, and it all worked out. I just feel really lucky today. I’ve always said I’d rather be lucky than good and luck took over today.”

Nabisco Roan is a 2008 red roan stallion by Boonlight Dancer and out of Crackin by Smart Little Lena. He was bred by Polo Ranch of Marietta, Oklahoma.

He was reserve world champion in senior working cow horse at the AQHA World Championship Show in 2012 and 2013, where he has earned $13,383.09, and $44,087.01 in NRCHA earnings.

Open Hackamore
Working first in the draw, Ron Emmons and One Fine Vintage slammed the door shut on all other competitors with a commanding score of 442.5.

“You know what?” Ron said. “He felt really good the whole time. He was a little stiff in the hackamore on one turn and on the cow, but I bumped him off it, and he came (around). Everything was good.

One Fine Vintage is a 2009 sorrel stallion by One Time Pepto and out of Shiners Siena by Shining Spark. He was bred and is owned by Robertson Ranches of Plymouth, California.

“Mary and Brad (Robertson) raised him,” Ron said. “In fact, his mother was here showing in the boxing class.”

Melissa Ann Miller of Belton, Texas, owns Shiners Siena now and showed her in the $5K non-pro limited class just two classes before One Fine Vintage won open hackamore.

“(The Robertsons) bred her to One Time Pepto and got this colt,” Ron said, “and the first time I saw him was as a yearling, and he was an ugly duckling. He was big and gangly and just all over the place. As he has grown, he has gotten prettier and prettier.”

When Ron started training One Fine Vintage, the colt was easy to train but his mind was unfocused.

“Everything was easy for him, so he didn’t have to focus on it,” Ron said. “It’s taken a while. I’m finally getting him focused and he’s finally coming to the party. He’s pretty special. You’ll see him again.”

Non-Pro Bridle
Until about three years ago, Meryl Reber of Kent, Washington, rode jumpers. Then she saw a reined cow horse class. On February 21, she won her first world championship in the event.

“I can’t even come up with words at all,” Meryl said. “This was not something in my wildest dreams.  We were going to come (to Fort Worth) and see what this was all about. I knew I had the horse to do it, and I’m learning, and I guess we put it all together today.”

Ima Chic Please is a 2003 buckskin gelding by Chic Please and out of Smokums Chex Mint by Smokum Oak. He was bred by Michael and Debra Brautovich of Watsonville, California.

“We call him ‘Baby Bullet’ because he’s kinda spoiled,” Meryl said before correcting herself. “But actually he’s just well taken care of, not spoiled.”

Bullet taught Meryl most of what she knows.

“I rode hunter-jumpers for 25 years,” she said. “I sat in the stands in October 2010 and watched a cow horse show. I bought him in December, and I started riding.

“The horse is phenomenal. Most of the mistakes that are made are me,” she added. “I don’t think he’s ever made a mistake. I’m learning. It’s taking time, but this is like a dream come true. I never imagined in a million years this could happen.”

Other winners from February 21:
Novice Non Pro Bridle – Jorge Luis Cid of Gainesville, Texas, riding Peppy Nicolena, a 2003 mare by Nic It In The Bud and out of Chelsea Lena by Smart Peppy Doc. She was bred by Eric Storey of Henagar, Alabama.

$5,000 Non-Pro Limited – Addison Fjelstad of Scarville, Iowa, riding Mini Mes Mercedes, a 2006 gelding by Mini Me Merada and out of Spooks Hickory by Olenas Command. He was bred by Deborah Jean Powers of Dickens, Iowa. Addison and Mini Mes Mercedes were the youth world champions in boxing at the 2013 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show.

Winners from February 22:
Youth Limited – Adrianna Adams of Oakdale, California, on Wynsome Chex, a 2005 bay gelding by Chex Out This Remedy and out of  Miel Classic Tejon by Mr San Olen. He was bred by Stacy L. Duesterhaus of LeMoore, California.

Youth Bridle – Alexa Beaty of Aubrey, Texas, on Star Dustn Wrangler, a 2007 bay gelding by Starlights Wrangler and out of Pines Dusty Modle by Pines Dusty Dude. He was bred by Mary Anne and Greg Hall of Gainesville, Texas. Alexa was reserve world champion with Star Dustn Wrangler at the 2013 Ford Youth World in reining and working cow horse.