Gotta Good Habit New Open Supreme Champion

Gotta Good Habit goes from a career in racing to the show arena and earns the 50th AQHA Open Supreme Champion title.

American Quarter Horse Association

Gotta Good Habit is an AQHA open Supreme Champion.

In January, Gotta Good Habit achieved the rarest recognition possible through the American Quarter Horse Association. The 2001 brown stallion became the 50th horse in AQHA’s 74-year history to earn an AQHA Open Supreme Champion title.

Gotta Good Habit was bred by Vessels Stallion Farm LLC of Bonsall, California, and is owned by Patricia Thompson of Springfield, Louisiana.

Gotta Good Habit is by leading sire Strawfly Special and out of First Femme by First Down Dash. He is a half brother to champion Old Habits (by Apollo (TB), $680,966); stakes winners One More Habit (by Apollo (TB), $272,510), First Wrangler (by The Signature, $95,805) and Habitual (by Jazzing Hi, $41,529); and stakes-placed runner Jess Another Habit (by Mr Jess Perry, $98,374). His dam is a sister to Grade 1 winner and producer Check Her Twice, sire Fishers Dash and Dash To Chivato, etc.

The open Supreme Champion title encompasses the versatility and athleticism of the American Quarter Horse. The title requires a horse to have raced and achieved a speed index of at least 90 twice. The horse must also earn at least 40 points in halter and performance classes at five or more AQHA shows, including two grand championships.

On the track, Gotta Good Habit had nine starts, two wins and two seconds, hitting a speed index of 91 twice, and qualifying to the finals of the $326,500 PCQHRA Breeders' Futurity (G1). He earned $23,261 before injury prematurely sidelined his racing career and was retired to the show arena, where he began his show career in 2005.

Gotta Good Habit was 10th in the AQHA year-end high-point performance halter stallion standings in 2007 and earned an open AQHA Champion title in 2010. He earned 14 grand championships and 18 reserve grand championships. He has been shown in halter, performance halter, heading and hunter under saddle.

He earned the last points needed for the open Supreme Champion title on December 31, 2013, in Tampa, Florida.

Before Gotta Good Habit earned his title, the most recent open Supreme Champions were Fly The Red Eye in 2013 and Cartel Caliente in 2010.

“We’re a very small racing ranch,” said owner Patricia Thompson. “I bought my first racehorse about 15 years ago. I’m an adrenaline junkie. I’m a paramedic, so I like fast. We’re a very small ranch that ended up with an awesome stallion.

“To find out there are only 50 open Supreme Champions, including Gotta Good Habit, that have ever done this?” Thompson said. “Who would have thought that a little racing ranch in Springfield, Louisiana, would ever be able to have a horse of this caliber!”

Gotta Good Habit will be featured in the March 2014 edition of The American Quarter Horse Journal.

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