California reined cow horse trainer Monica Caetano got her first Open-level win at the Idaho Reined Cow Horse Association (IRCHA) Futurity aboard Smokin Little Ringo, a gelding owned and bred by John Pascoe, of Irvine, California.
The chestnut gelding rose to the top of the pack, marking a 147 in the rein work, a 145 in the herd and a 151 down the fence. In the finals, where the top 15 horses come back for fence work only, the gelding earned a 149. A composite score of 592 topped Reserve Champion John Swales and SLR Won Smart Wolf, owned by Stumpt Lake Ranch & Cattle Co.
Smokin Little Ringo is by Smart Little Pepinic and out of Smoking Sabrina, by Mister Dual Pep. The win, as well as wins in the Intermediate Open and Limited Open, earned Caetano checks totaling $15,287. The duo had the highest-scoring rein work in the Intermediate and Limited Open peliminaries at the Snaffle Bit Futurity, but did not make the finals.
“Mentally, this horse can handle things I didn’t know a 3-year-old could handle,” Caetano said. “I hope to show him in some derbies next year.”
The Futurity Non-Pro title went to Bart Holowath and SDP Blu Rey, a TR Dual Rey-bred stallion and out of a Meradas Blue Sue mare. Consistency in all three events proved to be the answer for Holowath, who marked a 140.5 in the rein work, a 144 in the herd and a 141 in the fence work. The win was an exciting one for Holowath, who just purchased the blue roan stallion in early September. The duo was also a National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) Futurity Non-Pro finalist, earning more than $6,600 in Reno, Nev.
“This horse is really pretty on a cow. He has a lot of eye appeal that way,” said Holowath. “He’s the nicest-minded and easy going. You wouldn’t know he’s a stud.”
The win in Nampa, Idaho, added $2,250 to the stallion’s earnings. The Reserve title went to Cashs Catmando, owned by G2 Performance Horses and ridden by Grant Lindaman.
The Derby Open offered the chance for more seasoned horses to prove their worth, and Brother Jackson, owned by John Semanik and shown by Zane Davis, finally got his chance at the spotlight.
“I’m happy to end his limited-age event career with a win,” Davis said, noting the stallion has made the Open finals at every major event; however, a championship has always eluded him. “He’s always been the bridesmaid and never the bride, until now.”
Davis piloted the Peptoboonsmal son out of a daughter of High Brow Cat to three phenomenal scores: 150 in the rein work; 148 in the herd and 149 down the fence. The win added $7,740 to Brother Jackson’s lifetime earnings of $64,135.
Non-pro rider Suzon Schaal, DVM, piloted Chics Ruffled Up to the Derby Non-Pro title, earning $2,684. The pair also won the Derby Intermediate Non-Pro.
“I was happy with my horse in all three events. She can sometimes lack focus and has difficulty putting three good runs together,” she said.
However, the mare stayed focused, earning a 146 in the reining and in the herd, and a 143 down the fence.
Chics Ruffled Up is by Smart Chic Olena and out of the Gallo De Cielo (Rooster)-bred mare Fluff Your Feathers. Prior to the Idaho Derby, she had more than $17,000 in lifetime earnings.
“She is a fun horse to ride. She is kind of tall and gangly, but is very smooth to ride. We had a bit of trouble getting to know each other at first, but we are starting to figure things out. She has gotten a lot stronger and is trying a lot harder for me,” Schaal said. She plans to show her in the two-rein and bridle classes next year.
The IRCHA added $68,200 to the limited-age events, and awarded more than $200,000 throughout the Futurity, Derby and horse show classes.
In addition to the Futurity, Derby and horse show classes, the IRCHA held its first-ever horse sale, featuring 20 performance-age horses.
“The quality was excellent,” said IRCHA President Jeremy Meador. “The sale is off to a good start and we look forward to next year.”
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