After his 225 score aboard Buzzted won Aug. 3’s Derby Open finals at the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Summer Spectacular, Sean Flynn’s only regret was the pair had not competed at spring’s NCHA Super Stakes in the same arena.
Buzzted, a gelding sired by the stallion Light N Lena, out of the Peptotime mare, Honey Bee Time, headed to Fort Worth with $40,995 in cutting earnings. He more than doubled that by adding $45,599 with the dominant victory. Billy Martin of Millsap, Texas, bred the horse.
The horse’s owner, longtime non-pro rider Tim May of Saltillo, Miss., agreed with Flynn that maybe he should have entered the duo at the spring Fort Worth show.
“He’s been a nice, solid horse all year,” May said. He added that he gained more confidence in Buzzted after the horse carried Flynn and himself to Derby Open and Derby Non-Pro finals at May’s Breeder’s Invitational in Tulsa, Okla.
Flynn, who is 44, moved to Texas from Australia in 1999. He has competed in Fort Worth limited-age events since 2000. He earned his first Fort Worth title at last year’s NCHA Super Stakes in the Classic/Challenge Open division, riding Cat Man Blue, a stallion sired by High Brow Cat, produced by standout cutting mare Quintan Blue. The breakthrough win has aided the frequent finalist’s confidence whenever he has competed in Fort Worth finals since then, wife Ashley Flynn said.
Sean Flynn added he did not mind Buzzted winning Friday’s Derby Open semifinals with a 220. Some cutting observers say it’s usually best to finish near but not at the top during the semifinals.
“I don’t buy into any of that. I just wanted to get into the next round,” Flynn said. “I was pleased to get him shown well.”
Flynn also liked his No. 3 draw in the second set of the finals. Cows got the better of several horses during a rough opening set. A first-set 220 led after a dozen horses had competed before Buzzted.
“I didn’t think the cattle were being very good all night,” Flynn said. “The cows we had were all ones we’d picked, and they all worked out real good.”
Trainers Roger Wagner, Matt Gaines, John Mitchell and Sean’s brother, Eddie Flynn, assisted him in the arena. That’s the same crew he nearly always works with. It’s also the same one that helped him win his first Fort Worth limited-age title last spring.
Overdrive, a stallion owned by Dub and Christy Leeth of Cleburne, Texas, earned the Reserve Championship and $40,960 thanks to a last-draw 221.5 with Weatherford, Texas trainer Paul Hansma in the saddle.
The late David Husby and his wife, Georgia, bred the horse, sired by stallion Hydrive Cat and produced by the Holidoc mare, Lenas Horn. The Leeths purchased Overdrive, originally trained by Clint Allen, at the Husby Ranch Dispersal sale late in his 3-year-old season.
Overdrive headed to the event with more than $63,000 in prior cutting earnings. He left it with more than $100,000 on his career ledger.
“He’s a good horse,” Hansma said. “He went through Clint’s program and he does Clint’s thing. He can run and he can stop and he’s a darn good individual.”