Herd and Rein Work Complete for 2011 NRCHA Circle Y Ranch Derby

The second day of competition at the 2011 National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions has come to a close.

Entries in the Circle Y Ranch Derby compete in the three traditional phases of cow horse competition - and with the herd work having been completed on Saturday, the rein work was the catalyst to push some of the competitors to the head of the pack, and cause others to fall out of contention.

In the Open division former NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Co-Reserve Champion Shiners Nickle marked the high rein work score and became the leader of the Open division going into the cow work with Jay McLaughlin at the reins. McLaughlin and the Shining Spark stallion, out of Shesa Lota Nic, marked a 149 in the rein work. That, coupled with a 148 in the herd work, gave them a 3.5 point lead in the Open composite with a 297.

Shiners Nickle is owned by Michelle Cannon of Venus, Texas.

In the Intermediate Open division, Lyn Anderson and Tuckers Smart Cat, owned by David Archer, marked the high rein work score of 148. Anderson, a former NRCHA President, and Tuckers Smart Cat, by WR This Cats Smart and out of Smoke Time Tuck, collected $384 in the Intermediate Open division. They also placed second in the Open, worth another $1,448.

Leading the Intermediate Open composite with a 292.5 is CNN Crystal Boon, ridden by Kyle Noyce. Noyce and CNN Crystal Boon, by Boon A Little and out of Crystal Lady Gun, marked a 146 in the herd work followed by a 146.5 in the rein work. CNN Crystal Boon is owned by Steve Mattson of Rogers, Minnesota.

Inya Dreams, owned by Liz Allen Wagstrom of Des Moines, Iowa, was piloted by Jim McCutcheon to the high score of the Limited Open with a 147.5. McCutcheon and Inya Dreams, by Magnum Chic Dream and out of Seal Olena, received $384. McCutcheon has earned accolades in NRCHA, National Reining Horse Association, and National Cutting Horse Association competition.

CD Ben and John Swales have the Limited Open composite lead with a 288, having marked a 143 in the herd work and a 145 in the rein work. CD Ben, owned by Mary Reti of Elnora, Alberta, Canada, is by Soula Jule Star and out of CD Precious June. Swales is a former NRCHA World's Greatest Horseman finalist who has numerous Canadian titles to his credit.

In the $5,000 Novice Horse Open class, CGS Starscommand and Shawn Hays marked the high score of 144.5. Hay's wife, Tammy Jo Hays, owns CGS Starscommand, by Soula Jule Star and out of Spark Command, and collected $389.

Doug Williamson and Moon Me Pepto, marked the $5,000 Novice Horse Open highest score in the herd work and currently holds the lead of the division with a 290.5 after marking a 144 in the rein work. Moon Me Pepto, by Peptoboonsmal out of Lenas Sissy Moon, is owned by Barbara Hastings of Glendale, California.

Tammy Jo Hays, took the lead of the Non Pro Derby composite after marking the high rein work score of the division - a 145.5 - on Moonstruck Nic, owned by Hays and her father Walter Greeman, winning $590 in go-round money. Hays and Moonstruck Nic, by Nic It In The Bud and out of Moonstruck Cat, have a 286.5 composite. Hays and another Nic It In The Bud gelding, Nics Get Smart, were the 2010 NRCHA Derby Non Pro Champions.

Tish Wilhite and The Fresno Fox's Intermediate Non Pro high score of 145 catapulted them to the overall lead of the division with a composite of 284. Wilhite and The Fresno Fox were the 2010 NRCHA Stakes Intermediate Non Pro Champions and Snaffle Bit Futurity Non Pro Hackamore Champions. Wilhite and The Fresno Fox, by Heart Of A Fox and out of Oaks Jewel Doll, won $290 in the Intermediate Non Pro as well as $443 for a second place finish in the Non Pro.

Mark Parsons and Mo Skeeter, the 2010 NRCHA Canadian Region Non Pro Hackamore Champions, tied for the high score of the Amateur rein work with former NRCHA Youth World Champion Morgan Holmes and Im Dun R U. Both entries marked a 140.5 and collected $292.

Mo Skeeter is by Skeets Peppy and out of SR Sweet Chicolet, and owned by Mark Parsons. Holmes's parents, Jay and Rhonda Holmes, own Im Dun R U, by Dun It Big out of Lion In Wait.

Just behind Holmes and Parsons was the team of Carl Lambert and Nic Zan Winkle with the third high Amateur score of 139.5. That gave the Hempstead, Texas, competitor and Nic Zan Winkle, by Nic It In The Bud out of Sparkles Suzana, the high Amateur composite score of 277.5. Lambert hasn't been showing cow horses very long, but has won numerous awards in reining competition.

The finale of the Circle Y Ranch Derby - the signature cow work - will be held Monday, January 31. Once the Derby results are finalized, the chase for the titles of the 2010 NRCHA World Championship Show presented by John Deere will begin with the preliminary competition of the Open Two Rein and the Limited Open Bridle.

The NRCHA Celebration of Champions, held at the 1st Community Credit Union Spur Arena, features the Circle Y Ranch Derby, the NRCHA World Championship Show presented by John Deere, and the NRCHA World's Greatest Horseman. The show in its entirety can be seen free of charge thanks to NRCHA Official Videographer Galloping Video. To view the live webcast, visit the NRCHA website or Galloping Video's website at www.gallopingvideo.com.

The National Reined Cow Horse Association, now in its 61st year, is the governing body of cow horse competition, is responsible for promoting the sport, insuring high standards of competition and educating members and the public about the history and tradition of the cow horse. Through the support of a Corporate Partner family that includes Adequan, Bob's Custom Saddles, Cinch, Classic Equine, Gist Silversmiths, John Deere, Markel Insurance Company, Nutrena, Pfizer Animal Health, Platinum Performance, Quarter Horse News, Rios of Mercedes, Running W Designs, the Silver Legacy Hotel and Casino, and Merial products UlcerGard and EQUIOXX, the association works to keep the vaquero tradition alive in today's equine industry. For information on the National Reined Cow Horse Association, call 580-759-4949 or visit the NRCHA Official Web Site at www.nrcha.com.