Contestant numbers may have been down at the Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association (PCCHA)/Holy Cow Performance Horses Futurity, but payouts and prizes still drew a crowd. In several of the non-pro classes, low numbers resulted in pencil finals, where the final score was the total of the scores from the first and second go. And in the Futurity Non-Pro, it was Equi-Stat Elite $1 Million Rider Carl Gerwien who ended up with both the Championship and the Reserve Championship after showing two horses that topped the bubble score of 424 in the second go.
Gerwien and Kristina Fish-bred Boonsmate (Boonsmal Cee Lena x Ellies Little Mate x Smart Little Mate) scored a 218.5 in the first go and a 210 in the second go, resulting in a 428.5 total score. For the Championship, owner Willow Spring Ranch earned a $12,535 paycheck. Gerwien’s score on Willow Spring Ranch’s homebred WS Shorty Cat (Catfull x Shorty Jay Lena x Shorty Lena) was merely 1.5 points less – a 427 (218/209) – which resulted in the Reserve Championship and gave Willow Spring Ranch an additional $10,528.
Gerwien, of Nanton, Alberta, Canada, now boasts earnings of $1,420,075, according to Equi-Stat.
During another pencil finals, there was a tie in the Stakes Non-Pro, and two horse-and-rider teams walked away as Co-Champions. The first, Karen Brody and Smooth Classical, earned a composite score of 437 (215/222). The 4-year-old gelding (Smooth As A Cat x Classical CD x CD Olena) was bred by Dottie St. Clair Hill and belongs to Brody.
The second pair in the Co-Championship was McKenzie Merrill and her gelding Kausac Kat, who also marked a total score of 437 (218/219). Kausac Kat (Smooth As A Cat x Lenas Tangygirl x Lenas Telesis) was bred by Ronald Dowdy. He and Merrill recently won the Derby Non-Pro at the El Rancho Futurity and the Limited Non-Pro at the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Summer Spectacular.
For the Co-Championship, each team received $10,643, boosting Smooth Classical to more than $65,000 in earnings and Kausac Kat to more than $50,000. Brody, of Bell Canyon, California, now is over the $140,000 mark in earnings, while Merrill, of Grandview, Texas, has earned more than $350,000.
The Class/Challenge Non-Pro finals saw eight competitors vying for the winner’s check of $7,058, and it was Thomas deRegt, of Carmel, California, who came from the fourth draw with Mesacat to mark a 218 and take home the paycheck.
Throughout the week, Mesacat proved she could do double-duty as an open and non-pro horse. Grant Setnicka rode the mare to place fifth in the Classic/Challenge Open finals, which deRegt was proud of.
“He’s a lot of fun, he’s a great young man, and to me he’s doing just a fabulous job,” deRegt said of Setnicka.
Mesacat, a daughter of High Brow Cat, is out of the Smart Little Lena mare Mesoke, who deRegt won the Derby Non-Pro with at the PCCHA Derby and Classic/Challenge in 2006.
“It’s always nice when they’re homegrown,” he said.
Brandon Westfall, of Los Olivos, California, and Gentle Ben nearly upset deRegt and Mesacat when they came from the last draw to mark a 217.5. The duo settled for the Reserve Championship, which came with a check for $5,613. Gentle Ben (CD Royal x PG Selena x Playgun) is a 6-year-old gelding belonging to Russ and Janet Westfall. He was bred by Mark and Eva Gardiner. Westfall and the gelding were the Mercuria/NCHA World Series of Cutting Non-Pro Champions in Las Vegas earlier this year.