With two big scores in the books, Shane Steffen was on a mission when he guided Gunna Be A Smartie into the main arena Friday night for the fence work of the World’s Richest Stock Horse.
He had the lead after two rounds, but still needed a solid score to bring home the victory for the black mare owned by McSpyder Ranch.
“You try and get the best lead you can, or do the best you can, but the fence work is what it comes down to and so you just hope that you draw a good cow and that you can ride smart when you’re doing it,” said Steffen, of Powell Butte, Oregon. “For me, I guess, there’s pressure but the same aspect it’s something where it’s in God’s hands and all we can do is try and ride and be smart and do our part.”
The 219.5 he and the 2012 mare by Very Smart Remedy marked in the main arena at the South Point Hotel, Casino and Spa was good enough to win not one, but two championships. Their composite of 667 (222/225.5/219.5) was just enough — besting Sarah Dawson by half a point — to win both the World’s Richest’s Open and Intermediate Open divisions, netting more than $14,000.
“She’s really good mare,” Steffen said of the earner of more than $63,000. “She’s one of those few horses that a person gets that she tries her hardest every time and just goes out and does her job. And, she likes it. That makes a big difference.”
Bred by Joyce W. Pearson, of Hailey, Idaho, Gunna Be A Smartie won the Open Hackamore with Steffen in February at the National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) Celebration of Champions. They also won the Open Two Rein Spectacular Championship at this year’s NRCHA Stallion Stakes and NRCHA Derby.
The World’s Richest was her first major open bridle victory.
Nicknamed “Val,” the mare is the leading earner for her dam, Gunna Be Mine, a 1997 mare by Gunna Smoke out Seductivo (by Sensitivio).
For Steffen, the victory at the World’s Richest was especially sweet because he’s had the mare since she was purchased from her breeder at 3 years old. He said the mare has gotten better and stronger throughout the years Going forward, the plan is to take Gunna Be A Smartie home and then point for the World’s Greatest Horseman competition next February in Fort Worth, Texas.
The World’s Richest Open Reserve Championship went to Shine Smarter and Sarah Dawson. The composite of 666.5 marked by the Perrin, Texas, rider and 2012 mare (WR This Cats Smart x Shiney Tari x Shining Spark) earned $7,725 for owner Linda A. Mars, of Jackson, Wyoming.
In the Intermediate Open, Very Smart Choice and Lance B. Johnston earned the Reserve Championship with a composite of 661.5 (220/220/221.5). They took home a paycheck of $3,400 for Rocking BS Ranch, of Las Vegas, Nevada. Like the winner, Very Smart Choice (Very Smart Remedy x Magical Lena x Little Lenas Legend) was bred by Joyce W. Pearson, of Hailey, Idaho.
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