Following last year’s cancelation of the Breeders Invitational (BI), event organizers reinstated the Special 5 class, where horses eligible for the 2020 Derby could compete for a separate purse as a five-year-old.
Megan Miller and Hit Tha Flo stepped into the arena as the last draw in the Special 5 Non-Pro finals on Monday, May 18, hoping for the best. A score of 223 was enough to bag the $22, 311 first-place.
“I drew last and I said, ‘Oh, I don’t know with these cows, because they’ve been kind of tough.’ [They’re] hard to read – you have to watch them as the set is going and decide [how they are],” Miller said. “They were all black cattle, so it was hard to keep up with them. Towards the bottom of that set everyone was having trouble getting the cows to move away from the herd to work.
“My goal was to be really aggressive on my cut and knock something out. My first cow, I power-cut up through the middle and rattled [Hit Tha Flo], because I pushed really hard. Then I got my hand down and he went to work.”
After her first cow, Miller said she knew she was on the right path. Hit Tha Flo, known as “Kion,” showed confidence at the BI, and handled the difficult cattle with style.
Purchased by the Megan and her husband, Matt, as a weanling, Kion is carrying some big dreams for his owners.
“When Matt started him, he thought he could be a big-time horse that could possibly be a stallion prospect,” she said. “We’ve really enjoyed him. He’s been a fun horse to train and he’s so good-minded.”
Reserve Champions in the BI Special 5 Non-Pro were Coureygous and Kristen Galyean, scoring a 222 and earning $18,128.
Coureygous is by Dual Rey and out of the late NCHA Futurity Open Champion Highbrow Supercat (by High Brow Cat).