The Idaho Cutting Horse Association Futurity & Aged Event saw a day full of finals on Sept. 3 with the Futurity Open, Derby Open and Classic/Challenge Open taking place. The Futurity Open finals held two sets of 10 competitors, and it was Fancy Hughes and Kenny Platt who bested the field to claim the Championship.
Coming out as the third horse-and-rider duo in the second set of the Futurity Open finals, Fancy Hughes and Platt, of Fort Lupton, Colo., laid down a run that was marked a 225, effectively taking the lead by a three-point margin. Seven competitors later, they claimed the Futurity Open Championship and a hefty paycheck worth $12,373. Fancy Hughes, a 3-year-old mare owned and bred by Reed and Sheryl McClymont, of Holdrege, Neb., carried Pratt to first and second go-round scores of 222 and 218, respectively.
“I probably cut really two of the toughest cows tonight, and they really weren’t very good,” Platt said after his finals run. “[Fancy Hughes] just handled them like an older horse, just did everything right. She’s really grown up for a younger horse.”
The Futurity Open Reserve Championship went to Swanky Smart, owned by Iron Rose Ranch, of Carbondale, Colo., and Millsap, Texas, trainer Gary Gonsalves. The duo marked a 222 to take the title and earn $10,600.
The Derby Open finals saw one set of 12 horse-and-rider teams. Riding to the herd eighth in the draw was Templeton, Calif., trainer Morgan Cromer aboard Countin On Stella, owned by Terry Ratto, of Morgan Hill, Calif., and bred by Tommy Manion Inc., of Aubrey Texas. After marking first and second go-round scores of 212.5 and 224, respectively, they gave it their best shot in their finals run, and left the show pen with a score of 222, which earned them the Championship and a check worth $11,166.
“That mare, she can feel so cool,” Cromer said of Countin On Stella (Im Countin Checks x Smooth Stella x Smooth As A Cat), whom she got at last year’s National Cutting Horse Association Futurity. “She felt really good today. She was awesome in the second round. I was real confident going into the finals.”
The Derby Open Reserve Championship went to Dual Smart Kitty (Dual Smart Rey x Cats Peptolena x High Brow Cat), owned by Rusty and Shelly Simpson, of Nemo, Texas, and Clay Johnson, of Stephenville, Texas. They marked a score of 221 for the title and earned $9,100.
The Classic/Challenge Open finals turned out to be an exciting and successful event for Weatherford, Texas-based trainer Jason Clark. Riding into the show pen ninth and 11th in the 12-horse finals, his chances of walking out a champion were doubled, but he did one even better. Riding to the herd aboard Wise Little Pepto first, whom Clark owns with his wife, Becky, he marked a score of 226 to take the lead by four points.
He then rode Short N Smooth (Smooth As A Cat x Playin Shorty x Playin Stylish), owned by Darren Blanton, of Dallas, Texas into the show pen and marked a 224, which not only earned him the Classic/Challenge Open Championship, but the Reserve title as well. Altogether, Clark walked away with $18,368 for the two victories.
“It feels great,” Clark said of his wins. “This is actually our first time to this show. If it ended right now, it’d be a great trip,” he added, smiling.
Clark showed three more horses later in the day in the Futurity Open finals, and finished ninth, 10th and 11th.
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