Bamacat stole the show when he won the Open finals during the second leg of the Mercuria/National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) World Series of Cutting, which was held Feb. 27-28 during the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo in Houston, Texas.
Bamacat (High Brow Cat x MH San Tules Dually x San Tule Freckles) and Austin Shepard set the bar high with a 223 as the first team to work in the finals on Feb. 28. Next to work were One Time Shorty (One Time Pepto x Escada Cat x Shorty Lena) and John Kirby, who fell just a point shy of unseating the leaders with a score of 222.
After all the horses (except for Eddie Flynn’s two finalists that had to be scratched after Flynn had a medical emergency) worked in the 13-horse finals, the first and second horses to work kept their places as Champion and Reserve.
Owned by the Bamacat Syndicate, of Summerdale, Alabama, Bamacat picked up $5,192 for the win, and One Time Shorty, who is owned by Brenda Berry, of Waller, Texas, earned $4,716 for second place. Kirby also placed third with James Strange’s WR This Cats A Lena.
Bamacat is a 2009 sorrel stallion, known as “Julio” at the barn, who has NCHA earnings of $237,893. He was bred by Shepard and his wife, Stacy, who live in Summerdale, Alabama.
“He is a character,” Shepard said after the victory. “My son, Cade, gets him ready, so that’s extra special, and he takes a lot of pride in it. Bamacat is just a really neat horse to be around. I ride him almost every day, whether I work him or not. He’s part of the family.”
Shepard and Julio entered the finals with the highest score from the preliminary round – a 224.
“He was really good yesterday in the go-round,” Shepard said. “The cattle were pretty tough. I wanted to stick with the cows that I liked and try to have a clean run.”
The Mercuria Open at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo attracted 43 entries who were competing for a total purse of $37,857.
Two weeks after winning the Mercuria Non-Pro title in San Antonio, Dan Hansen and Woody Be Lucky did it again at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo on Feb. 28. As the 11th horse to work in the 13-horse finals, “Freak” marked a 225 and added $6,733 to his large bank, which now stands at more than $695,000. Hansen has more than $1.6 million in earnings.
Woody Be Lucky is owned by Hansen and his wife, Karen, of Nampa, Idaho, and Hansen says the horse is on loan from his wife. By Nitas Wood and out of the Freckles Playboy mare Playboys Ladyluck, the 15-year-old gelding was bred by Craig Crumpler, of Wichita Falls, Texas.
“My wife, Karen, and Don [Crumpler] showed him all through his aged events,” Hansen said. “They doubled up on him. After his aged event years, I wanted to haul for the World and knew that he was the one to do it on.”
The duo won the Non-Pro World title in 2007 and 2011.
“My help and I watched the cattle and we had some picked,” Hansen said. “The herd, I thought, kind of changed a lot once they started. I thought they settled good, and then they got pretty testy and pretty wild. We kind of checked off. We cut two fresh cows. The two cows we cut were on our list but not at the top of our list that we had left, but we couldn’t get the one that we wanted so we just went on up and cut the one fresh one that was left. That’s what we got and it worked out.”
Michelle Anderson, of Victoria, Texas, and Nothing To Lose (High Brow Cat x Spoonful Of Rosie x Hes A Peptospoonful) marked a 220 as the fourth team to work to earn $5,968 as Reserve Champions.
“I owe all the glory to God always,” Anderson said. “I’m very excited that He’s blessed my family with getting to do this, so I just feel blessed and happy to be here.”
Nothing To Lose was bred by Reagan Lancaster, of Plano, Texas, and is owned by Anderson Cattle Company, of Victoria. When asked to describe his personality, Anderson said, “He’s the laziest thing. He waddles…”
“Like a duck,” Bella, Anderson’s 11-year-old daughter, added for clarity.
“He just waddles along so you have to work extra hard to get him to stretch out and go,” Anderson agreed. “He’s sweet as he can be. He just likes to be scratched on, but lazy, lazy, lazy. You have to pull him out of the stall and pull him down the alley. He’s so smart on a cow. He can really read a cow and he gets really low.”
The Mercuria Non-Pro at the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo began with 48 horses competing for their share of $39,352 in purse money.
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