Snaffle Bit Futurity

Ranching Heritage-breds shine at the Snaffle Bit Futurity.

Ranch Horse Journal

Ranching Heritage-bred Bet Hes Black earned $90,000 at the Snaffle Bit Futurity. PHOTO: Primo Morales photo/Courtesy National Reined Cow Horse Association

The horses competing at the October 8 Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenge were not the only Ranching Heritage horses earning big checks at this year’s Snaffle Bit Futurity in Fort Worth. A number of Ranching Heritage-eligible horses also gave impressive showings in the rich Snaffle Bit; in fact, half of the top four horses were Ranching Heritage horses, and 20 percent of the horses in the finals were Ranching Heritage-bred. 

The Ranching Heritage program promotes American Quarter Horses bred by Ranching Heritage Breeders, and the versatile, sound and willing horses that are ranch-born and –raised. Ranching Heritage Breeders are those who have steadfastly continued to maintain the ranching tradition by raising American Quarter Horses for use in working cattle.

The Ranching Heritage program also increases the rewards for eligible horses competing in the show ring. Zoetis AQHA Ranching Heritage Challenges are open only to horses bred by AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeders, although anyone can own and show these horses. Ranching Heritage Challenges this year will offer more than $90,000 in cash and prizes at six events held around the United States. AQHA Ranching Heritage-bred horses are eligible to compete in Challenges for their entire life, and also have the opportunity to earn special awards and money at major events, such as AQHA world championship shows.

To find out if your horse is eligible to compete in Ranching Heritage Challenges, call 806-376-4811, or check the list of current Ranching Heritage Breeders.

First among the Ranching Heritage horses at the Snaffle Big Futurity was C Ranches Inc.’s Bet Hes Black, who finished second in the open finals, and earned a cool $90,000 check for that. The black 2014 stallion was ridden by Zane Davis, and was bred by Ranching Heritage Breeders Garth and Amanda Gardiner of Ashland, Kansas. Bet Hes Black is by the High Brow Cat stallion Bet Hesa Cat and out of the Soula Jule Star mare Soula Jule Forever. His dam was herself an earner of $34,751 in the reined cow horse pen, and she has also produced earners Pepe Le Wright (by Hes Wright On, $62,243) and This Cats Forever (by WR This Cats Smart, $22,703).

The prelim leader, Shiners Diamond Cat would ultimately finish fourth in the final and earn $50,000 for owners Mike and James Draper of Nipomo, California. The mare was ridden by Justin Wright, and was bred by Ranching Heritage Breeder Wagonhound Land & Livestock of Douglas, Wyoming. She is by WR This Cats Smart and out of the Shining Spark mare Shiners Diamond Lady.

Also making a strong showing were finals horses CR Tiny Tuff, who was 15th, and CR Tuff Lovin Cat, finishing tied for 23d, each earning $10,000. Both horses are homebred geldings for Ranching Heritage Breeder Center Ranch of Centerville, Texas; both were ridden by Boyd Rice; and both are sired by the ranch’s Nitas Wood stud Woody Be Tuff. CR Tiny Tuff is out of the Peptoboonsmal mare CR Dees Boon Meow, while CR Tuff Lovin Cat is out of the High Brow Cat mare CR Smart Lil Kitty.

The WR This Cat Is Smart stallion Opus Cat Olena tied for the highest herd work score in the prelims, and would ultimately finish 22d, earning $10,000 for his owners, the Ostrander family’s Ranching Heritage Breeder of the Year Box O Quarter Horses. He was shown by Jecca Ostrander’s nephew, Clay Volmer. The pair also finished 15th in the limited open, earning an additional $3,000. The stallion was bred by Wagonhound Land & Livestock, and is out of the Smart Chic Olena mare Opus Chic.

Intermediate Open
Opus Cat Olena was not the only Ranching Heritage-bred to pull checks in the intermediate open division.

Current Zoetis-AQHA Best Remuda winner Silver Spur Operating Co. saw their Seven S Tina Rey finish 10th under trainer Kyle Trahern and earn $5,000. The sorrel mare was bred by R.T. Stuart Ranch of Waurika, Oklahoma, and is by Play Dual Rey and out of the Very Smart Remedy mare Very Smart Valentina.

Also placing was Metallic Playmate, who was 11th and earned $3,000. She was ridden by Clayton Edsell for owners K & L Phillips LLC of Corona Del Mar, California. The Metallic Cat mare was bred by Garth and Amanda Gardiner – who also bred the open reserve champion – and is out of the Very Smart Remedy mare Very Smart Playmate.

Just behind in 12th was Kit and Charlie Moncrief’s homebred Playforstylepoints, who earned $3,000. The mare was ridden by Shawn Hays and is by Mr Playinstylish and out of the Smart Little Lena mare Lean Little Lena.

Additional Showings
Another Wagonhound Land & Livestock-bred horse, This Shiney Miss, posted a 638.5 with Lanham Brown aboard in the non-pro finals, finishing third and earning $12,528.

The mare is owned by Lanham’s family ranch, Ranching Heritage Breeder R.A. Brown Ranch at Throckmorton, Texas. This spring, Lanham was the cowboy world champion at the Zoetis Versatility Ranch Horse World Championships aboard Take A Pick. She is by WR This Cats Smart and out of the Shining Spark mare Shiney Miss Hickory. Her brother, Hesa Hickory Cat, has earned more than $14,000 in reined cow horse and Ranching Heritage Challenge competition.

In the non-pro limited finals, Peptolize was eighth under breeder, owner and exhibitor Timothy Drummond of Pawhuska, Oklahoma. The gelding is by Lizzys Gotta Player and out of the Peptoboonsmal mare Todds Stylish Pepto.

But if spectators got tired of watching top-flight reined cow horses, they were able to settle in to watch top-flight roping horses compete at the inaugural $292,000 American Rope Horse Futurity, and there were Ranching Heritage-bred horses there, too.

Making a big showing in the heading division was Wright Style, who is owned by Lesley Cummings of Yamhill, Oregon, and was ridden by Les Oswald.

The gelding was bred by Garth and Amanda Gardiner and is by Hes Wright On and out of the Playin Stylish mare Diamonds With Style. He finished seventh, earning $3,000.

AQHA News and information is a service of the American Quarter Horse Association. For more news and information, follow @AQHAnews on Twitter and visit www.aqha.com/news.