For Jay McLaughlin, winning the Intermediate Horse division of the World’s Richest Stock Horse was somewhat of a surprise. He rode 2012 stallion Shiney Outlaw (Shiners Nickel x Mereyda x Dual Rey) to third place in the Open division, but the Intermediate Horse division was created this year for horses that had not yet earned $100,000. After earning owner Michelle Cannon $3,750 in the Intermediate and $4,000 for placing third, the horse unofficially crossed the money mark.
With a 219 in the herd work and a 213 in the rein work, McLaughlin said the horse was challenged to put together a nice fence run. “Outlaw” answered the challenge with a resounding 227 score on a smooth run. While it all looked easy, McLaughlin said the stallion didn’t feel like he usually did in the rein work.
“We didn’t have the rein work we wanted,” said McLaughlin. “He came back and won the fence work, which was cool. But for me, the highlight was the herd work. I always knew he could cut but there was something that went on with him that kept him lower on the judge’s cards. Tonight, he marked a legit 219. It was really fun for me to show him to his potential, which I knew was there. It was nice to mark a 227, don’t get me wrong, but that was a legit herd work tonight.”
The first two riders in the cow work, Lance Johnston on Very Smart Remedy and Randy Paul on Lenaliltothewright, both zero scored. However, the dubious way the third run of the World’s Richest Stock Horse event started didn’t lessen McLaughlin’s confidence. Their monster 227 helped make up the ground lost in the reining.
McLaughlin has only trained and shown Outlaw since the National Reined Cow Horse Association Derby in Paso Robles, Calif., in June, where the duo won the Open Two Rein Spectacular after only three weeks together as a team. The plan is to continue to show the 7-year-old stallion in the two-rein and bridle for the rest of the year, including showing at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions in February.
Many of these same bridle horses will be back in the arena with Outlaw down the road.
“It is no longer a knife fight but a full on missile fight—every horse in there could win,” said McLaughlin. “There were only 11 horses in there tonight but any one of those could win at any time. It is no longer futurity, derby and [done]. It isn’t the almighty dollar but what is best for the horse anymore.”
Todd Bergen piloted Smartly Starstruck (Very Smart Remedy x Katie Starlight x Grays Starlight) to the second place win in the Intermediate Horse division. The pair earned owner McSpyder Ranch $2,500.00.
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