The Sutton Ranch was recently honored for its historic horse sale. • Photo courtesy of AQHA.

Sutton Ranch Honored for Horse Sale

The first AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder Top Production Sale Award went to the Sutton Ranch, which has hosted a historic sale that has provided good horses to customers for 70 years, the AQHA announced.

The Raymond Sutton Ranch Production Sale has been hosted in Gettysburg, South Dakota, since 1955, and in 2021 the family produced production sale is recognized for its outstanding sale. The Top Production Sale Award honors those who have been producing quality horses and recognizes their hard work and dedication to promoting the breed.

The Suttons’ ranch was founded in 1883 when Edwin Sutton and his family settled in the middle of South Dakota. In the late 1940s, the family began breeding registered American Quarter Horses, and their first sale was held in the fall of 1951. Raymond Jr. took over the reins of his family’s ranch with the help of his wife, Georga. Together, they were inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 2018. The late Raymond Jr. was also recognized as a 2021 AQHA Legacy Breeder for breeding Quarter Horses for 50 consecutive years. Since Raymond’s passing in 2005, Georga and their daughter, Dr. Heather Sutton, continue to run the ranch, which is known for its American Quarter Horses, Hereford cattle and American bison.

The ranch’s stallion roster include Western performance-bred sires such as Young Pobre (Young Gun x Pobres Badger Girl x Peppy San Badger); Peppy Pedro Badger (Solito Badger x Demke Gal 101 x Duplicate Dude); and Sweet Gallo Oak (Gallo Del Cielo x Sweet Sister Oak x Doc’s Oak).

“The Raymond Sutton Ranch Sale has a proud history of offering great working American Quarter Horses,” said Karen McCuistion, AQHA senior director of member programs. “We are honored to be able to recognize their dedication to quality and longevity.”

Award criteria includes:

  • Sale must consist of registered American Quarter Horses.
  • A minimum of 75% of the consignors to the sale must be AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeders and/or a minimum of 75% of the horses must be Ranching Heritage-bred.
  • Applicant must be a member in good standing of AQHA and the Ranching Heritage Breeders program.
  • Sale must be at least 5 years old.

The Raymond Sutton Ranch annually catalogs an average of 70 head, most of which are weanlings. The past few years have required an adjustment for the international pandemic and online bidding has been offered, but buyers are still encouraged to attend the sale in person to view the horses.

The Suttons have also hosted many ancillary events with the sale, from educational clinics to organized trail rides, and even sold bison from their herd at the horse sale.

Standout horses sold at the sale include Sparky Impression, a past AQHA-Women’s Professional Rodeo Association barrel horse of the year; accomplished rope horses RWS Roan Oak and RWS Pobres Allusive; and Palomino Horse Breeders Association World Champion Solid Gold Sonora.

The Raymond Sutton Ranch Production Sale is held annually in September.

To learn more about the AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeders program, visit