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Strong Performances pay off at Calgary Stampede Futurity Cutting Horse Competition, presented by Wrangler

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Calgary – This year’s Calgary Stampede Cutting Horse Futurity presented by Wrangler was an outstanding display of skill and athleticism by an elite group of star competitors who dazzled the crowd with their ability.

 

Their riders were very good, too.

 

Running from October 16th to the 20th, the Stampede Futurity presented by Wrangler was a Premier Event on the National Cutting Horse Association schedule with over $300,000 in cash and prizes up for grabs.

 

Cutting is a judged event where a horse and rider must ride into a herd of cattle and separate one animal from the others, guiding it to the centre of the arena.  Then the horse/rider team must keep this animal from returning to the herd.  They must repeat this with two additional animals – all within a total elapsed time of 150 seconds.

 

While the rider decides which cattle will be cut out of the herd, controlling the cow is really up to the horse.  The rider must keep a loose rein and allow his mount to display the judgment and skill needed to keep the subject animal separate.  Penalties are assessed if the rider directs the horse after the cow is cut out.

 

Professional horse trainers must ride in the Open classes.  The most experienced horses – the five- and six-year olds – appear in the Classic events.  This year’s Open Classic Grand Champion is Didges Smart Kitty, a mare owned by Jim and Dianne Schaeffer of Paul, ID, ridden by Brian Anderson of Idaho Falls, ID.  This horse/rider combination has had success in Calgary before, earning Reserve Champion honours in the Open Futurity class for three-year olds in 2011.

 

“This is my first big win here in Calgary,” Anderson says.  “It’s my third year up here and I’ve had a great time every time I’ve come up.  She’s had a lot of success.  I think this win will put her over the $60,000 mark (in winnings).  You don’t want to go in there and blow your chest out, but I had a real good feeling about what was going to go down tonight.  I know if I do my job, she’s going to do hers.”  Horse and rider had their best round in the final, earning 223.5 points – the best showing of the night in any class.

 

The Reserve Champion in the Open Classic class was Dooney Boonsmal, owned by Sarah and Judd Sherman of Yelm, WA and ridden by Josh Sleeman of Rainier, WA.  “Dooney Boonsmal came to me a year ago,” Sleeman says.  “She had $1,800 in earnings.  She had all the talent in the world but she just wasn’t in the right spot.  She and I just clicked.  We became buddies.  Tonight put her over $50,000 in earnings.  This is first horse I’ve ever won $50,000 in one year on.”

 

In the Open Derby for four-year old horses, This Cats Max, owned by Doug Wiens of Chilliwack, BC and ridden by Dustin Gonnet of Cayley, AB had its best performance of the day in the final round and topped the field.  Reserve Champion was Catlynn, a horse with some pretty impressive humans in its corner.  Owned by 2013 Calgary Stampede Elite Western Rider Award winner Ron Mathison of Calgary, Catlynn was ridden by a former winner of the Elite Western Rider Award – Brad Pedersen of Lacombe.

 

Gonnet had a pretty good night on Saturday, as he also rode Annies Lil Cat to Reserve Champion honours in the Open Futurity class for three-year olds.  Annies Lil Cat is owned by Robert Krentz of Steinbach, MB.  The Grand Champion was Cataduala, owned by Heather Hudson of Calgary, and ridden by Gerry Hansma of Granum, AB.

 

Hansma has worked with the winning gelding since it was born.  “I’m confident in that horse,” he says.  “I’ve showed him at three shows now.  He’s won a couple and placed high in another.”  That’s not to say, Hansma expected to win.  “You don’t really know until you get going,” he points out.  “The horse’s mind has to be reading the cow.  It’s up to them to do the work.  In the finals, any horse and rider combination can win it.” Hansma has won the Futurity five times, the first victory coming in 1988.  On Saturday night, he and Cataduala improved with every go, with their best score – a sterling 221 – the best performance of any Open Futurity pairing.

 

The Non-Pro Futurity Grand Champion was Instantly Catty, ridden by Les Jack of Rocanville, SK, who owns the horse with Coreen Jack.  Cattlight, the Reserve Champion is owned and was ridden by Cliff White of Langley, BC.

 

The Non-Pro Derby Grand Champion was You’ll Miss Me, owned by Pekisko Ranch Ltd. and ridden by Michelle Lund of Red Deer.  WS Catty Lil Taz, the Reserve Champion was ridden by Carl Gerwien of Nanton for Willow Spring Ranch, also of Nanton.

 

One Stylish Spot, owned and ridden by Kade Smith of Star, ID was the Grand Champion in Non-Pro Classic.  Willow Spring Ranch’s Mia Smart Quejana was Reserve Champion, ridden by Carl Gerwien.

 

Non-Pro 7 Up is a class for horses over seven years of age.  DMAC Spoonshine, owned by JD Quarter Horses and ridden by Jake Knoblauch of Woking, AB is the 2013 Grand Champion.  The Reserve Grand Champion is CD Peptofilly, owned by Calgary’s Winsome Capital Inc. and ridden by Lisa Anderson of Calgary.

 

The 2013 Calgary Stampede Cutting Horse Futurity presented by Wrangler was the last time the event will be held in the Corral.  In 2014, along with many other events, the Cutting Horse Futurity will move to the Stampede’s spectacular new facility – the Agrium Western Event Centre.

 

Agrium Western Event Centre

Scheduled for completion before the 2014 10-day Stampede, the Agrium Western Event Centre is a state-of-the-art facility for western events and agriculture education, exhibition and industry in southern Alberta. Designed to form a lasting connection between urban and rural communities, it will host an engaging, globally-focused educational program called Journey 2050, and it will play a central role in making the Calgary Stampede a year-round gathering place. For more information visit our website 

 

About the Calgary Stampede

As we enter our second century, the Calgary Stampede celebrates the people, the animals, the land, the traditions and the values that make up the unique spirit of the west.  The Calgary Stampede contributes to the quality of life in Calgary and southern Alberta through our world-renowned 10-day Stampede, year-round facilities, western events and several youth and agriculture programs. Exemplifying the theme We’re Greatest Together; we are a volunteer-supported, not-for-profit community organization that preserves and promotes western heritage and values.  All revenue is reinvested into Calgary Stampede programs and facilities.

 

For more information, please contact:

Megan Gauley                                                       Tracey Foster

Ag Media Committee Chair                               Agriculture Program Co-ordinator

T 403.232.9087                                                   T 403.261.0127

C 587.226.6766                                                    C 403.483.1927

F 403.262.3067                                                    F 403.262.3067

E agmedia@calgarystampede.com                 E tfoster@calgarystampede.com