Already a 75-Year AQHA Breeder, reined cow horse owner and breeder Miller Land & Livestock was recently named the winner of the 2021 American Quarter Horse Association Best Remuda Award.
The Amarillo, Texas-based association recently announced the ranch based in Big Piney, Wyoming, had earned the accolade, which honors the contributions ranch horses have made to the American Quarter Horse.
Mike Miller and his wife, Tara, and their sons, Will and Wes, manage the operation of about 2,400 cow-calf pairs and 1,800 yearlings on land some of which was first ranched in the late 1870s and that has been in their family for more than 125 years. The Millers brand their cattle – Irish Black, Hereford and Angus crosses – with the historic “67” brand. Their operation is spread out and requires many miles of riding. Cattle are moved around, worked and doctored regularly all year long.
“It is a horseback outfit,” said Mike.
Their American Quarter Horse breeding program has existed since AQHA was founded in 1940. Most of the Millers’ horses have spent their lives as working ranch horses, but they include notable show, rodeo and other competitors. Mike is a very accomplished non-pro in National Reined Cow Horse Association competition, with earnings of more than $662,000 – most earned aboard homebred horses and all self-trained.
Among the horses bred on the ranch is the late Playboys Buck Fever, a son of Freckles Playboy and out of Tsarina Chexanic (by Reminic) that the family bred, competed on and owned. Playboys Buck Fever earned $62,246 in the show pen and has sired the earners of more than $391,443, including two NRCHA superior reined cow horses.
The ranch currently breeds 15-25 mares per year.
Miller Land & Livestock will receive its award during the AQHA Breeder Banquet, which is tentatively scheduled during the 2022 AQHA Convention.