The entries in the cutting classes at the American Paint Horse Association (APHA) World Show may not have been large, but the horses were still loaded with talent.
With $47,008 in lifetime earnings, CC Cat had experience on her side in the Senior Cutting, where three horses and riders cut for the World title. She carried Uwe Roeschmann to a 218 to win the Championship.
Roeschmann said his game plan was to “come here and win it!” at the World show with the “outstanding little mare.”
“She is awesome cowy,” he said. “She’s got a lot of big stops, but if you put something in front of her, she will [practically] lay down.
“She is very laid-back,” he added of the mare’s temperament. “You could put a 2-year-old kid on her, and she wouldn’t act up. She’s really awesome, a nice horse.”
By Neat Little Cat, CC Cat, who is double-registered with the American Quarter Horse Association (AQHA), is the highest-earner of two performing offspring out of Classy Lil Tivio (by GV Classy Pepper). She was bred by Bubba McAnear, who showed her, along with J.B. McLamb, at quite a few events throughout her limited-age career. “CC” made it to the Open semifinals with McLamb at the 2013 NCHA Futurity and 2014 NCHA Super Stakes.
Now owned by Alicia Bollis, of Collinsville, Texas, the mare will soon be a new mother. Roeschmann said an embryo by Once In A Blu Boon is due next year.
“The owner’s really excited to see the baby. We all are,” he said. “We’ll find out in March of next year!”
Originally from Germany, Roeschmann immigrated to the United States 17 years ago and now lives in Muenster, Texas. He originally started cutting while still in Europe after discovering the sport through some friends.
“I started like every kid, riding ponies and horses as I grew up,” he said. “I got together with people that are in the cutting business over there, and then I went over here all over the country and learned from the best.
“In 2001 we came over here and stayed since,” added the horseman, who has earnings of $56,946. “Now we are Americans, and we’re happy and really proud about that.”
ESR Susanna (PT) and Jerry King were the only entrants in the Junior Cutting, but they still worked hard to put in a good run. King used the opportunity to cut the ideal cattle for the mare in an effort to build her confidence, winning the World title with a score of 211.
“Any time you show no matter what your competition, you want to show your horse the best you can,” King said. “It doesn’t matter whether there’s one or 100 [entries in the class], you want to go down and show the horse because there’s a lot more shows coming up, so you want to be sure you get your horse shown right. And on these young horses, build their confidence. That’s what it’s all about.”
He cut three soft cows that would look at the mare and stay in the middle, since that’s the mare’s specialty. While she can handle cows that run to the ends, he wanted to give her a chance to show off her skills.
Sherry Millis, of Graham, North Carolina, purchased “Susanna,” who is by Jr Bad And Lawless (PT) and out of the Wild Haired Cat mare ESR Sheba, within the last month. The mare was bred by Eastern Sky Ranch and had nearly $10,000 recorded in Equi-Stat prior to the APHA World Show. King was familiar with the mare before her purchase, as he assisted her former non-pro owner with her training.
“We’ve taken her to a couple NCHA [National Cutting Horse Association] shows and done real well with her – won the 4-year-old in Tennessee on her – so I’ve had pretty good luck,” King added. “I’m going to ride her for a little while, and then later on she [Millis] may get to showing her. Sherry is very good about being patient. She’ll wait until I get them ready for her before she gets on them.”
Located on the East Coast in Parkton, North Carolina, King plans to keep showing the 4-year-old mare at limited-age events around his area, including the Augusta Futurity. Fortunately his home survived the effects of Hurricane Florence, which hit North Carolina right before the APHA World Show started earlier in September.
“We had water come right up to the bottom of our hay barn and right up to the bottom of our stalls and stop,” said the trainer, who hosts From the Ground Up on the Farm and Ranch TV Network. “We had like 75 mile-per-hour winds, and we had 20-25 inches of rain. We skimmed it just perfect.”
When Sandy Kaplan arrived at the APHA World Show with Cats Painted Illusion (PT), she was only entered in the Novice Amateur class. She assumed the Amateur would have lots of entries and figured there was no way she and her unfinished cutter were ready for the World level yet.
“And then when I got here and there were only two in the Amateur, I was like, ‘Well, what the heck! I’m here; I’ve got my hat on!” she said with a laugh.
The night before the Amateur, she entered herself and her stallion. She couldn’t believe it the next day when they marked a 203 to win the World title – especially considering that, along with her horse not being finished, she herself had only been competing at cuttings since April of this year. They also ended up with the Novice Amateur Cutting title.
Kaplan, of Larkspur, Colorado, won the Amateur Working Cow Horse World Championship at the APHA World show last year, and her husband, Glenn, took the Amateur Solid Paint-Bred World title too. While they still ride their homebred cow horses, Kaplan said her focus might be shifting.
“We still have several of [our senior stallion Doc N Smoke (PT)]’s daughters who are World champions in the reining and cow horse, and we will now be breeding them to our junior stallion [Cats Painted Illusion] and probably continuing to show in the cow horse because my husband, Glenn, really loves the cow horse part,” Kaplan said. “I don’t know what I’m going to do. I’m starting to get a little bit nervous about going down the fence, so the cutting is a way to still be challenged by working cattle but not so much the risks, although you can get hurt doing anything on these animals.”
The Kaplans, who are both psychologists, bought Cats Painted Illusion in September of last year. Though the horse wasn’t finished, he was everything they were looking for in a stallion prospect – he carried the homozygous gene, and he possessed the more modern cutting bloodlines.
By Cats Illusion (PT), a son of High Brow Cat, the David Banks-bred stallion is out of Brigalenas Easy Delta (PT), a Brigalenas Delta (PT) mare that goes back to Floyd and MaryAnn Moore’s APHA Hall of Famer Delta Flyer (PT).
“We were willing to take the gamble in that he wasn’t by any means finished, so we couldn’t really see what he was capable of – he didn’t have any earnings because he hadn’t been shown,” Kaplan said. “But yet when we both rode him and had some trainers that we know come down and ride him, everybody said he’s got all the parts, it’s just going to take the right trainer to bring him along. We just said we’re going to do it. I have not regretted it at all.”
She praised trainer Matt Matusio, who showed the stallion to third place in the Senior Cutting, for taking his time and building the horse’s confidence. Named “Louie” after Glenn’s father, she said the stallion is very athletic with a “cool, sweepy style,” and has been a “true delight.”
“We bred two of our mares and then we did some outside breedings,” she said. “We’re really looking forward to our babies!”