Spooks Blue Eyed Gun & Trapper Rodgers

Reined Cow Horse Riders Showcased at APHA World Championship Show

The heat was on in the American Paint Horse Association (APHA) Junior Working Cow Horse, held Sept. 28 in the John Justin Arena at the Will Rogers Memorial Center. Six entries vied for the World Championship, and Spooks Blue Eyed Gun (PT) walked away with the title.

The mare (Spooks Gotta Gun x Codys Dun Jac [PT] x Mr Barbie Cody Jac) was ridden by Trapper Rodgers to a 214.5 in the rein work, the top score of the evening. In the cow work, she was whistled off two cows before finally getting to work the third one that entered the arena, marking a 217.5 down the fence for a composite 432.

“The first cow kind of got a little out of whack,” Rodgers said. “She was really hooked on and it felt good, it just kind of ran on top of us. The second cow, same thing. Luckily it took them a while to get that cow out of the arena because I was kind of running out of horse. She was able to catch her air there for a second.”

Spooks Blue Eyed Gun is a homebred belonging to Chris Lytle. Rodgers said she “bred this mare, watched her foal and raised her, and it’s the first homegrown World Champion she’s had, so that’s really cool.”

The Junior Working Cow Horse Reserve World Championship went to Ze Classic Cat (Zezes Pepto Cat x Pastels Play Girl x Pastels Smart Lena) and Lorna Neel, who were also whistled off their first cow. The duo marked a composite 420 (202.5 rein/217.5 cow) for the title.

Senior Working Cow Horse

Smart Master Plan & Rick Steed

Smart Master Plan (PT) and Rick Steed, of Okeechobee, Florida, dominated the Senior Working Cow Horse when they marked a 213 in the reining and a 221 down the fence. Their composite 434 took the World Championship, and the 17-year-old stallion was retired on the spot.

“We’ll just raise some babies out of him,” Steed said. “I won’t quit riding him because I like him too much, but this is the last time he has to come here.”

Smart Master Plan was bred by Brent Harris and is owned in partnership by Steed and Greg and Jonnie Flewelling. He is by Smart Plan and out of the Doc’s Drift Bar mare Lady Drift Bar (PT).

“He’s a little big man. His feet are simply just something to get his heart where he wants it go next,” Steed said. “He doesn’t know that he can’t do anything, and that’s his personality. He’s one of the more amazing horses I’ve ever been around in my life.”

A Smart Remark (PT) and Tucker Clark took Reserve with their composite 427. The gelding is by Mark This Spot (PT) and out of Smart Little Sadie (by Smart Little Calboy).

Amateur Working Cow Horse

Sandy Kaplan & Smokes First Choice (PT)

It was late in the evening on Sept. 27 at the APHA World Championship Show when the working cow horse amateur competitors stepped into the ring, but that did not stop any of them from giving it their all.

Larkspur, Colorado resident Sandy Kaplan, whose husband, Glenn, won the Amateur Solid Paint-Bred Reining title earlier in the day, was bubbling with excitement after riding her homebred mare, Smokes First Choice (PT), to the Amateur Working Cow Horse World Championship. The duo marked a 210 in the rein work and a 205 down the fence for a composite 415.

“It’s phenomenal. Phenomenal! There’s no better experience in the Paint world!” Kaplan said. “I’m particularly proud of this mare because she’s a daughter of our mare who is a World Champion cow horse. She’s out of our mare and by our stallion, both of who are Paint World Champions. We have a lot of pride in what we’re producing.”

Smokes First Choice is by Doc N Smoke (PT), who is also the sire of Glenn’s World Champion, No Wright To Smoke (PT) (out of Wright On Racket [PT] x Lenas Wright Stuff [PT]). The 5-year-old mare is out of the HB Instant Choice (PT) mare Instant Prayer (PT).

“She was well-behaved and handled herself well for her first World show. We’re really happy with her,” Kaplan said. “For her first big event, she has handled everything, from warm up situations to wash bays to tractors, kids, everything. I’m very happy with how she’s handling the pressure.”

Jane Hatfield and Dunnits QT Royal (PT) received the Reserve World Championship with their composite score of 407 (204.5 rein/202.5 cow). The homebred mare is by Dunnits Gold King and out of KDB Royal Qt Pie (PT) (by Q T Poco Streke [PT]).

Amateur Limited Working Cow Horse

Kellie Herrington and Repeat Plan (PT) celebrated their World Championship with a victory lap.

In the Amateur Limited Working Cow Horse, Kellie Herrington, of Ponder, Texas, bested a field of 12 horses and riders to take both the World Championship and Reserve World Championship on her two horses.

She and Repeat Plan (PT) (A Master Plan [PT] x Lenas Solana x Docs Hi Lena)’s composite 429 (216 rein/213 boxing) was the top score by 9 points. Even the Reserve score she and Debbie Patterson-bred Cat Mania (Cats Merada x Aristocratic Cookie x Smart Aristocrat) marked, a 420 (214 rein/206 cow), stood 15 points above third place.

“It feels really awesome. I’ve been looking forward to this show, and this is just the icing on the cake,” Herrington said of being named first and second.

She has owned 14-year-old Repeat Plan, who was bred by James and Jo Anne Carollo, for about a year, and this was the second time for her to show him at the APHA World Championship Show.

“We’re finally kind of getting together, and I really feel confident on him,” Herrington said. “He’s an older gelding, and he’s really taught me a lot about the sport.”

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