On Thursday, October 24, at the Billingsley Ford Southwest Reining Horse Association Futurity and Show, an enduring champion rode a 3-year-old to the top finish of the John Deere Open Preliminaries. National Reining Horse Association Hall of Famer Tim McQuay dominated the preliminaries on his home-owned Gunna Sassya with a score of 224. Gunna Sassya is a son of the late Gunner out of Shining N Sassy, the mare Tim won the NRHA Futurity on for then-owner Carol Rose.
McQuay's score was just a point ahead of a cluster of 223 scores – by Dell Hendricks on Frank Costantini's Tricked Out Spook, Bobby Avila Jr. on Im Gunna Shine owned by Teresa Benton, Jared Leclair on This Cats Stressin, owned by Terry Ranch, Jordan Larson on Double Loaded Gun, owned by Freddie Brasfield and Justin Mathison on Mary Jansma's Walla Walla Gunshine.
Dell, Bobby, and Jared topped the Intermediate Open Qualifiers, where it took a 216 to make the finals. Jared also led the Level 2 Open on This Cats Stressin and just behind in the Level 2 was Robert Chown on Mister Black Magic, owned by WW Ranch of Argyle, Texas.
Eduardo Chrisians rode Sugar Pop Step Ahead to top the Level 1 Open with a score of 219. Mirjam Stillo was in the reserve slot with a 216 on Little Joe Vintage, owned by Harper Conner.
In the Level 2, it was 213 to get to the finals and in the Level 1 it took a 209.5.
It took a 219 to make the finals in the John Deere Open Level 4 Futurity at the Billingsley Ford Southwest Reining Horse Association Futurity and Show. One rider qualified three horses – Jordan Larson! Along with Double Loaded Gun, Jordan rode Tinseltownsmokingun, owned by Julie Gaupmann and Magnamus owned by Steve Tyner to Level 4 finals slots.
The Gunners Special Nite Draw Party, sponsored by Turnabout Farms with food sponsored by the Red Dirt BrewHouse, was a fun event. Attendees enjoyed a gourmet wine and cheese selection, along with a delicious menu offering from Red Dirt BrewHouse.
SWRHA President Ann Salmon welcomed guests and presented special appreciation awards to sponsor Turnabout Farms and to KR Reproductive Services.
A highlight of the event was the auction of an Embryo Transfer donated by KR Reproductive Services and Southern Equine. Gunny Mathison handled the auctioneering details and when the bidding ended Barb Wibbels had outbid all others to claim the prize.
The draw party continued with the drawing of positions for the John Deere Open Futurity and Level 2,3 & 4 Futurity Finals.
Earlier in the day, Kinzey Donnelly rode Ms Kyla Michelle to win the Intermediate Open, earning $531 for owner Michael Marks of Yorktown, Texas. Donnelly, of Valley View, Texas, marked a score of 72 for the win on the daughter of Big Chex To Cash out of Ms Remin Whiz.
That was just a half point ahead of Richard Pokluda on Notorious Big (Big Chex To Cas X Da Steady Holiday) owned by Bob Majerus and Jordan McBurney on Rhodes River Ranch's Hanna Shinetana (Shining Spark X JRC Quixote O Lena).
Hava Vital piloted Nu Magic Cash (Nu Chex To Cash X Dream About Magic) to win both the Limited Open and Rookie Professional classes. Vital, formerly from Israel, has been riding the horse since just before the NRHA Derby and won the Reserve Open Derby title at Waco. At Ardmore, she scored 72.5 to top the class on the good 6-year-old owned by Misty Valley Performance Horses.
Reserve honors in the Limited Open went to Giada Camparsi on Conquistadordaydream (Conquistador Whiz X Custom Dreamer) owned by Stacy Adams of Coppel, Texas. Second place in the Limited Open went to Saar Ben-Hamo on Pick N Berries with a 72 for owner Tzvika Knaani.
For more information about the Southwest Reining Horse Association or the SWRHA Futurity, call 580-759-2572 or visit www.swrha.com.