The Cotton Stakes, held in West Monroe, La., crowned a new Futurity Open Champion on Thursday, Sept. 11. Known for his talent aboard 3-year-olds, it came as no surprise when Craig Thompson topped the class riding Attamilliondollarcat.
The Buffalo, Texas, trainer marked a 219.5 aboard the gelding, for owners Robert and Melanie Tieperman, of Midway, Texas. The duo topped Reserve Champions DMAC Spicy Spoon, owned by Madill, Okla., non-pro Kathleen Moore, and James Payne, of Marietta, Okla., by merely a half-point.
Thompson, a two-time National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Futurity Open Champion, has lifetime earnings in excess of $2 million. Although he has not been riding Attamilliondollarcat for long, his experience paid off to the tune of a $12,000 winner’s check. Payne and his mount earned $10,000 for their 219-scored performance.
Spoonful Of Stella carried trainer Jason Clark, of Weatherford, Texas, to the Derby Open title. The duo picked up the championship by a single point after marking a 223 in the finals on Wednesday, Sept. 10.
Clark, who boasts lifetime earnings of $2.2 million, piloted the mare (Hes A Peptospoonful x Stella Starlight x Grays Starlight), in her debut at the 2013 NCHA Futurity. In Louisiana, she picked up a check worth $11,000 for owner Wrigley Ranches, of Weatherford. This win brings the Lach Perks-bred mare’s NCHA earnings to $60,130.
The Derby Open Reserve Champions, Junie Wood (Nitas Wood x Tuffs Junie x Tuff Lena) and John Mitchell, pocketed $9,500 for their 222 in the finals. Junie Wood, owned by Glade Knight, is currently sitting second in the NCHA Open Horse of the Year race.
Equi-Stat Elite $5 Million Rider Austin Shepard, of Summerdale, Ala., won the Classic Open riding Sweet Little Cats. The stallion (High Brow Cat x Sweet Little CD x CD Olena), a full brother to $502,202-earner High Brow CD, marked a strong 227 for the win.
Sweet Little Cats is nearing the $100,000 mark for owners Todd and Elizabeth Quirk’s Ten/27 Ranch, of Denham Springs, La. After picking up $11,000 for the title, he is less than $5,000 away from the achievement.
Paula Wood’s Donas Suen Boon, the 2012 NCHA Futurity Non-Pro Champion, carried her husband, Kobie, to the Classic Open Reserve title, worth $9,100, after earning a 223 in the finals. The homebred mare (Boon Too Suen x Donas Cool Cat x High Brow Cat) has more than $160,000 on her lifetime record, and Wood boasts more than $2 million in earnings.
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