For 43 years, the Augusta Futurity has drawn cutters from all over the United States to the biggest aged event on the East Coast. On the evening of Friday, Jan. 20, the show put a spotlight on 5- and 6-year-olds, with the Morris Equine Group 5/6-Year-Old Non-Pro finals kicking off the night. After 11 exhibitors went through the pen, it was Crimsonnette and Blakley Simoneaux who came out on top, marking a 221 to win the Championship.
“We had decided for me to show her, and Cade [Shepard] showed her as well in the Open finals tonight, so I was just planning on trying to get through a clean run and do as well as I could,” Simoneaux said. “I just told myself I needed to be smooth, try to cut clean and be as smart as I could.”
The strategy paid off, and Simoneaux collected $14,574 for the win. Shortly afterward, Crimsonnette, a homebred mare belonging to Simoneaux’s sister, Madalyn Cowart, turned around and carried Shepard to third place in the Open with another 221.
The 5-year-old mare (Bamacat x Wood She Be Neat x Nitas Wood) and Shepard are no strangers to the spotlight. In 2021, they collected Shepard’s first big Open title when they won the National Cutting Horse Association Futurity Limited Open Championship. The 5/6-Year-Old Non-Pro title was Simoneaux’s first to collect with the mare, and she was happy to do it at the Augusta Futurity.
“It’s always been a fun show for us to come to,” Simoneaux said. “We’ve always had a little luck here, so we just figured we could come again as they had good money added.”
Simoneaux thanked her help, including Shepard, Bill Pierce, Austin Shepard and her husband, Chet, for assisting her throughout the show.
Taking Reserve with a score of 218.5 were 2023 Abilene Spectacular 5/6-Year-Old Non-Pro Champions Lindy Ashlock and Desire Is Timeless (One Time Pepto x Desire Some Freckles x Freckles Playboy), who was bred by Rockin 5 Ranch LLC. The pair collected $12,083.