Dont Stopp Believin Tops Augusta Futurity 5/6-Year-Old Classic Open

5/6-Year-Old Classic Non-Pro & Area 18 Youth Scholarship Cutting

katherinequeenKatherine Queen & Metallic Manziel • Photo by Kristin PitzerDuring the Area 18 Youth Scholarship cutting, Katherine Queen and Clayreycious 10 marked a 214. There were several other higher scores, and after their ride, Joey Varnadore rode Reyminate (Dual Rey x Amanda Stargun x Playgun) to a 218. When the class was over, it seemed like the 218 was the winning score.

But shortly afterwards, the judges reviewed Queen’s run and decided to bump it up 6 points to a 220, making her the 2016 Champion.

“It was amazing. I was hoping they would check it and see if they got me for what they shouldn’t have, and they did. I was so happy. It was awesome,” Queen said.

Clayrecious 10, or “Poker,” is a 7-year-old by Halreycious. He is out of the Cash Quixote Rio mare Cash N Scooter.

“I just love him,” Queen said. “He takes care of me all the time. I always know that he’s going to go out there and try his hardest for me.”

After her unexpected win, Queen went into the 5/6-Year-Old Classic Non-Pro finals on Strawn Valley Ranch-bred Metallic Manziel (Metallic Cat x Smart Look N Pepto x Peptoboonsmal). And as if one Championship wasn’t enough, she took home the Non-Pro Championship too after she and “Manny” marked a whopping 227.

“I’m so excited. When I saw my score, I just lost it. I was bawling,” Queen said. “It was the run I’d been waiting for my whole life.”

Queen said her grandparents bought the gelding for her as a gift.

“I had been looking for a horse for a while, and I tried several different horses,” she explained. “Me and my mom made a girl’s trip to Texas, and we went to try him. From the first time I worked him I just knew he was the one. There was something special about him.”

Queen collected $8,500 for the title. Her mom, Elizabeth Queen, tied Mary Ann Rapp for the Reserve title after both riders marked a 220, and each received $7,300. Elizabeth rode Princess And The Pea (Halreycious x A Purrfect Cat x High Brow Cat), who was bred by Carroll’s Cutting LLC, of Dennis, Texas. Rapp was aboard Sunrise Ranch LLC bred-Miss Kitty Reycine (Smooth As A Cat x Miss Reycine x Dual Rey).

4-Year-Old Unlimited Amateur

During the 4-Year-Old Unlimited Amateur, Denise Seiz rode Time For A Smoothie to a 218 from the fifth draw. The score seemed like it would hold, but from the very last draw, Blake Graham and Zacks Smoothie, who was bred by Carroll’s Cutting LLC, marked a 220, which topped the class.

Graham, who is 16 years old, was happy to win after he and “Coconut” (Smooth As A Cat x Zacks Holly Echo x Zack T Wood) marked a 0 earlier in the day during the Non-Pro first go. Though he did not expect to outscore Seiz, he thought it turned out “pretty cool.” From Dublin, Georgia, he likes the Augusta Futurity because it is so close to home.

Graham and his family purchased Coconut in July 2016 after his trainer, Chris Howell, tried her out. One of the things they liked about her was her big stop. Graham plans to keep showing her and will next take her to The Ike.

The 10th grade homeschooler got into cutting thanks to his grandfather, Jim. He has been competing since he was a youth, and last year he saw his biggest success yet – the NCHA Futurity Amateur Reserve Championship, which he achieved with Coconut.

For their win in Augusta, the duo received $2,546, which boosted Graham to $85,424 in lifetime earnings. Seiz and Time For A Smoothie received the Reserve Championship and $2,036. Time For A Smoothie is by Smooth As A Cat and out of the One Time Pepto mare One Secret Desire.