The Breeder’s Invitational (BI) Classic/Challenge Non-Pro finals, held Saturday, May 16, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, featured 21 talented duos, including Champions Cody Hedlund and Meteles Cat. As the second pair in the draw, they marked a 225 to earn the win.
This championship marks the second successful year at the BI for Hedlund, of Acampo, California, and Meteles Cat (Metallic Cat x Teles Lies x Lenas Telesis), bred by Hedlund’s father, Rock Hedlund. In 2014, the duo finished as Derby Non-Pro Reserve Champions.
“That was probably one of the best runs I have had on him,” Hedlund said of his Classic/Challenge Non-Pro finals performance. “He’s just so smart about a cow and never gives up his quickness.”
Hedlund and Meteles Cat earned a check worth $16,417. Hedlund now boasts an Equi-Stat record of $545,910, while his 5-year-old stallion’s lifetime earnings total more than $170,000, according to Equi-Stat.
The Classic/Challenge Non-Pro Reserve Championship went to Brandon Dufurrena and his homebred mare, Purple Reyn (Metallic Cat x Miss Ella Rey x Dual Rey). The duo scored a 222 and brought home $14,214 in earnings.
Classic/Challenge Limited Non-Pro
After topping the Classic/Challenge Limited Non-Pro go-round composite with a 435, Cade Shepard, of Summerdale, Alabama, and Some Kinda Highbrow bested their competitors in the finals by marking a 225 during the finals, taking the win by a 7-point margin.
The championship, worth $8,584, added to Shepard’s previous Equi-Stat record of $83,302. The 13-year-old has earned $67,747 in 2015 alone.
“It’s pretty crazy to think about,” Shepard said. “I remember when I would watch everyone else win, and it’s pretty cool to be doing it now.”
Shepard has a good role model for success. His father, Austin Shepard, surpassed the $6 million mark in Equi-Stat earlier in the week after finishing third in the Classic/Challenge Open finals. Shepard’s parents, Austin and Stacy Shepard, currently own Some Kinda Highbrow (High Brow CD x Some Kinda Memories x Smart Little Lena).
Madalyn Colgrove, 15, and CD Stylish Girl were Limited Non-Pro Reserve Champions with a score of 217. CD Stylish Girl is also by High Brow CD. The Boligee, Alabama, rider and her mare (out of Stylish Top Girl x Docs Stylish Oak) earned a check worth $6,857.
Classic/Challenge Unlimited Amateur
In the last set of the day, Glenn Barlow and his homebred gelding Mr Connerey rose to the top of 25 competitive pairs by marking a 223 to take the Classic/Challenge Unlimited Amateur Championship.
Mr Connerey scored a 215.5 in the first go-round, earning an eight-way tie that came into the finals on the bubble. Although the duo barely escaped elimination, they turned on their A-game in the finals to capture the win.
Barlow, of Gillette, Wyoming, took home a paycheck worth more than $10,000, boosting his Equi-Stat record to $262,612. Mr Connerey (Dual Rey x Cats Good Intentions x High Brow Cat) increased his lifetime earnings to $100,631, according to Equi-Stat.
Julie Sheedy and Sweetallic (Metallic Cat x Sweet Little Boon x Smart Little Lena), bred by Dale Koller, of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, marked a 221 to finish as Reserve Champions and earn $8,661.
After marking a 216.5 in the first go, Seth Wooten and SDP Hydrive Del Rey earned a 220 in the finals to win the Classic/Challenge Amateur Championship.
The win earned the duo a paycheck worth $8,032, boosting Wooten’s Equi-Stat record to $94,348. SDP Hydrive Del Rey (Hydrive Cat x Calie Del Ray x Dual Rey), bred by Buffalo Ranch, of Fort Worth, Texas, nearly doubled his lifetime earnings, according to Equi-Stat.
“It happened very quickly, but [it was] the most fun I have ever had in my life,” said Wooten, of Wilson, Texas. The rider posted his first check to Equi-Stat in 1998.
The Reserve Championship went to Jaylee Hall, of Weatherford, Texas, and High Brow CD Deuce, who marked a 219 in the finals. High Brow CD Deuce (High Brow CD x WJ Pretty In Pink x Peptoboonsmal) was bred by Jimmy and Dixie Purselley, of Burleson, Texas.
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