First out in the Metallic Cat National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Summer Spectacular Derby Limited Open finals was Paul Chalmers and Blue Bayou Cat. Seven competitors later, his son Justin piloted Reystylin Smooth to victory with a 220.5.
“I feel really good. We just wanted to cut some good, easy kind of cattle, and not get in any kind of wrecks,” said Justin Chalmers, of Brady, Texas. “The first two cows were ones we had picked that we liked, and our third cow we cut, we knew she was fresh, but she was just a shape cut.”
According to Chalmers, the plan going forward for he and Reystylin Smooth is simply to advance and make “clean, smooth runs” on Saturday, where they will compete in the Derby Open semifinals. He hopes to make it to the finals.
“I’m really confident in this horse, so I don’t have any worries about him,” said Chalmers of the homebred 2014 gelding by Smooth As A Cat and out of Rey N Style (by Dual Smart Rey). “He’s guaranteed one of the best horses I’ve ever rode.”
After last night’s win, where “Levi” brought home a check for $3,313, the gelding has now acquired $24,905 for owners Eddie and Barbara Young. Chalmers, who collected his first check in the youth cutting nearly 15 years ago, has accumulated more than $90,000 in earnings since then. Last year he dominated the 2017 NCHA Summer Spectacular Derby Limited Open finals as well, piloting the Young’s homebred gelding HC Herd Boss (Herding Cats x Chinosa Rey x Dual Rey) to the win.
“Levi is very intelligent on a cow, very quick and smart. I love the way he moves his feet – he’s just a very smart individual,” Chalmers said. “It’s a great feeling to know that I put the first saddle on him and rode him all the way through. I know him inside and out. And it feels good to know this is a product that I’ve put out, as far as what I’ve done.”
The Reserve title in the Derby Limited Open finals went to Kevin Walden and Couture De Force (Stylish Wood 003 x Short A Shay x Shorty Lena), who marked a 219, bringing home a check of $2,991 for owner/breeder Lori Gale, of Gale Force Quarter Horses in Conway, South Carolina.