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Mandy McCutcheon Wins 2009 SWRHA WinsStar World Casino Non Pro Futurity on West Coast Mizzen
2009-10-24
For the third year in a row, Mandy McCutcheon earned the Southwest Reining Horse Association Non Pro Futurity Championship. She won the 2009 Futurity on West Coast Mizzen, the horse with whom she had also topped the preliminary round.
“She was actually a lot better today,” McCutcheon said. “I showed my other horse earlier and I feel like I tried to overshow that one. I made some too-quick moves and it made her uncomfortable, so I just started over for Mizzen (West Coast Mizzen). I always try to shake off the run before if it doesn’t work out the way I wanted it to.”
Because McCutcheon was third to last in the Non Pro Finals, she had the opportunity to watch many other Non Pros show, including her good friend and great competitor, Kelle Smith. Smith, riding Rufanicki, had taken over the lead at draw 26 with a score of 220. “It helped that Kelle marked that 220. I know how good she is, and that she runs a precise pattern. I knew I didn’t need to go crazy, but that I needed to do everything right,” McCutcheon said.
Her strategy paid off with a score of 225! With family and friends by her side, McCutcheon posed for the win picture with the signature Golf Cart that has become a tradition of the SWRHA Futurity. Along with a CR Morrison Bronze, she collected a check for $5,250.
Mandy and her husband Tom purchased West Coast Mizzen (West Coast Whiz x Mizzen Shine) from Howard Mann in April of 2008, and Mandy has big plans for the mare. “We bought a bunch from him, and she’s the only one we have left. She’s steadily become my best horse. If everything works out I want to keep her for a broodmare. I think she’d cross well with our stallion.”
Kelle Smith, of Marietta, Oklahoma, took Reserve honors on Rufanicki, by Lil Ruf Peppy out of Chexanicki, with a 220. The reserve title garnered $3,196 and a pair of Anderson Bean Boots.
In the Intermediate Non Pro competition, Ron Thompson rode Roo D Electrick to a 219, and five horses later, Charlie Wiederholt tied that score on Mr Stylish Montana. Both men opted out of a run-off, choosing to save the horses for the impending National Reining Horse Association Futurity in December.
Along with being Co-Champions, they both tied for third in the Non Pro division. Each collected checks for $3,723, and divvied up the prizes.
Wiederholt, of Hastings, Minnesota, acquired Mr Stylish Montana in a trade with Craig Schmersal. “I tried him in June, and really liked him. I liked how he was a big stopper. He was real cute going around,” he said.
The pair didn’t have the best preliminary run, and necessitated a bit change. “I think I had a little too much bit in the prelims. But today he felt good everywhere. He felt like he usually does,” he said.
Along with the Co-Championship, Thompson and Roo D Elecktric also won the Non Pro Prime Time, collecting an additional $705. “He was great today. I couldn’t ask for anything more, and any time I’m in the same category as Charlie I’m very happy,” said Thompson, of Whitesboro, Texas.
Thompson purchased the gelding, by Jacs Electric Spark, from a customer of David Zimmerman, and then consigned him to the National Reining Horse Association Futurity Sale. “I passed him out, and he’s been really good ever since,” he explained. “He’s real bright in the show pen, and just a happy, happy horse. I have never had one that feels as good as he does in the show pen.”
Unfortunately, Ron broke his back just two months before the SWRHA Futurity. When asked how he was feeling, he replied, “I have my moments. Yesterday I was thinking I just didn’t want to be here – and now I feel great!” He laughed and said “The doctors say next month I can start riding – I’m looking forward to that!”
Lance Griffin took Reserve honors in the Non Pro Prime Time on A Bright Tag (Whiz N Tag Chex x Genuine Starbright) with a score of 215.5. Griffin collected $548 for Reserve.
Winning the Limited Non Pro and the Non Pro Level 1 was Scott Fisher, who rode his horse, Smart Little Spooker, to a 216. “It took a community effort to get me here. I don’t know who to start with, but I thank Marco Formentin, Bill Norwood, Brad Giesbrecht, the people at the Sterling Ranch for letting me use their facility, and Andy Johnson. They are all great friends of mine, and I couldn’t do this without them,” he said immediately following the awards ceremony.
Between the two titles, Fisher pocketed more than $1,140. He purchased Smart Little Spooker (Smart Spook x Sugar Bars Twister) as a late yearling, and explained that the training process has been a fun challenge. “He was really, really good today. I was a 203.5 in the preliminary round, and I got some help, and we did much better today. He’s still in a progression, and that’s real encouraging to me.”
Craig Sutter and Steppin Up Wimpy finished right behind Fisher in both divisions, collecting $794. Sutter and Steppin Up Wimpy (Wimpys Little Step x Berrys Enola Gay) marked a 213 in the Finals competition.
Built in 1937, the historic Hardy Murphy Coliseum has been a mainstay as an Ardmore tourist attraction. Primarily designed to host horse and livestock shows, recent renovations to the facility have given it the flexibility to host even more events. Along with the space upgrades that allow the facility to stall 500 horses, the addition of air conditioning provides Hardy Murphy with the competitive ability to attract national and regional events. The renovations have resulted in a premier competitive equine facility.
For more information on the Southwest Reining Horse Association Futurity, or to inquire about the SWRHA, please call 580-759-2572, or visit www.swrha.com.