Smooth As A Cat’s bankroll as a sire continues to thicken as the 16-year-old stallion’s offspring leave their mark on the cutting and reined cow horse industries. Most recently, he has surpassed the $15 million mark to join the elite ranks of the leading cutting horse sires of all time.
Smooth As A Cat (High Brow Cat x Shes Pretty Smooth x Wheeling Peppy) was bred in Aubrey, Texas, by Tommy Manion Inc., who owned him through 2004. Shown solely in the Open by Equi-Stat Elite $7 Million Rider Matt Gaines, of Weatherford, Texas, the stallion garnered a whopping $187,552 as a 4-year-old and $97,519 as a 5-year-old.
“We watched him grow up. He was just barely broke as a long yearling and my dad came home one evening and said, ‘Mark my words, this will be the best horse we’ve ever raised,’” Tommy’s son, Kyle Manion, recalled. “Everything just came so easy and he was always so smart. I’ve never seen a horse that has been as accurate on a cow as he was.”
In 2005, Smooth As A Cat had his biggest year yet. He was transferred to Kyle Manion, who began showing the stallion in the Non-Pro. The duo picked up several 5/6-Year-Old Non-Pro wins, and the stallion also continued showing successfully in the Open under Gaines, Tim Smith and Phil Rapp. At the close of his 6-year-old season, in which he amassed $214,967 and earned the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Horse of the Year title, Smooth As A Cat boasted total lifetime earnings of $500,038, according to Equi-Stat.
“He was always so great to be around; he was like a gelding. There were times we would collect him and show him the same day, just a few hours apart,” he said of Smooth As A Cat, who handled his double life as a breeding stallion and show horse well. “He was just the sweetest horse and he never had any unsoundness issues, despite his busy aged-event career. He was a finalist 43 times and was retired sound. He was a phenomenal show horse and he’s a phenomenal sire. We couldn’t have been blessed with a better horse.”
In the breeding shed, Smooth As A Cat quickly proved his merit. His first foals were born in 2004, and all seven American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA)-registered offspring went on to earn money in cutting. That first crop alone, comprised of all mares, is responsible for $221,492 of the stallion’s record.