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2003 National Reined Cow Horse Association National Champions Named

Horse Press Release

For the first time ever, there were three year-end titles on the line for National Reined Cow Horse Association show horses. The first hurdle to clear was the Regional one. Superlative performers on that level were then invited to the inaugural NRCHA World Show, February 25-28, in Stephenville, Texas. World Show points were added to the totals for the year, and finally yielded the 2003 NRCHA National Champions.

It was an entirely new format, and it was anybodies’ guess how it would end up. Would all National Champions be determined before the World Show ever took place? Or on the other hand, would the World Show change every placing, making it impossible to win a National Championship unless one competed there? Neither surmise ended up correct in the end, as many of the National Champions carried over from their Regional victories, yet seven of the National Championship placings were re-sorted by World Show performances. Only one competitor rose from no regional championships at all, to a National Reserve Championship strictly from a hallmark performance at the World Show. All in all, a pretty fair test of a new system!

Which region yielded the most National and Reserve Championships? The Southwest Region, long the stronghold of the NRCHA, led the tally with 12 National and Reserve Champions. The burgeoning Eastern Region fielded 6 National and Reserve Champions, and the Northwest and South Central each had 2.

Another topic of debate which will take another year to clarify: Just how difficult is it anyway to achieve the “Triple Crown” – the “Grand Slam” – for a horse to win Region, World and National Championships all in one year?

It did happen in 2003, but on the other hand, it was Smart Time Tuck…..

Open Bridle National Champion
Smart Time Tuck
Ridden by Lyn Anderson
Owned by Kathryn Schaefer
Points: 152 – Earnings: $ 11,314
World Open Bridle Champion
Southwest Open Bridle Champion

The “Iron Horse” of the NRCHA, Smart Time Tuck continues to hurtle down the track of NRCHA destiny, devouring titles set in his path like mile markers, not milestones. Add to the list the first ever NRCHA “Grand Slam” home run: Regional Championship, World Championship, and National Championship, all won in the same year. As a matter of fact, this amazing horse is still in his first year in the bridle.

This 7-year-old gelding has amassed an unheard of resume in his relatively short life, including the following titles: 2000 Snaffle Bit Futurity Finalist at Reno, Idaho and Chowchilla; 2001 Champion of the NRCHA Futurity Open Hackamore Class; 2002 Hackamore Classic Open Champion; 2002 Salinas, Reno And Cow Palace Open Hackamore Champion; 2002 NRCHA Open Hackamore Gold Year-End Champion, 2002 Idaho Derby Champion, and winner of five saddles from September 2001 through October 2002. In 2003 he began his bridle career by winning the first 10 Open Bridle classes he showed in. The first time he was ever beaten in the bridle was his freshman appearance in the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Bridle Sweepstakes in Reno. He won 4th there behind 3 of the best seasoned bridle champions going down the road. Between August of 2002 and August of 2003 he won 15 straight open classes in the snaffle bit, hackamore and bridle on his way to an NRCHA Supreme Championship earned his first year in the bridle.

By Senors Lil Brudder, out of Smoke Time Tuck X Doc Tom Tucker, and owned by Kathryn Schaefer, of Aromas, California, he has been ridden for his entire career by trainer Lyn Anderson, of Madera, California. Anderson had plenty of titles to attach behind her name before Smart Time Tuck came along, including Open Champion of the NRCHA Stakes, multiple year end championships and limited age event finalists, and NRCHA Stock horse-man of the year. She has been the rider of four NRCHA Supreme Champions.

Open Bridle National Reserve Champion
Short Oak
Ridden by Robert Chown
Owned by Linda Wacker
Points: 103 – Earnings $2,570
World Open Bridle Reserve Champion
South Central Open Bridle Reserve Champion

By Shorty Lena, out of Oakadot by Doc's Oak, - “Short Oak is an unbelievable athlete that could excel at anything!” said trainer Robert Chown.

Chown, of Gainesville, Texas has ridden Short Oak for 2 years. He got the horse as an 8-year-old cutter with over $60,000 to his credit, but no cow horse experience, and certainly no dry work experience. According to Chown, this was not a problem for the smart and gutsy bay stallion. “He is blistering fast, and can just do things that lots of really nice horses can’t do.” He added, “This horse could do any event and be great at it.” Though only started as a cow horse in 2002, Short Oak had a fine year in 2003, qualifying for the AQHA World Show Finals in Senior Working Cow Horse. The pair left Oklahoma City with 8th place.

Earlier in the year they were narrowly edged to 3rd place in the Open Bridle Sweepstakes at the Snaffle Bit Futurity Horse Show in Reno, behind Todd Crawford on Starlight Playmate, and Todd Bergen on Nic It In The Bud, who tied for the win. In regional competition, Short Oak took 4 wins and 1 second place finish in 5 shows.

The handsome 1994 bay stallion is owned by Linda Wacker, of Valley View, Texas, and stands at Chown’s training facility in Gainesville.

Limited Open Bridle National Champion
Smart Tucker Smoke
Ridden by Ramona Koch
Owned by Donna Russo
Points: 91 – Earnings: $2,898
Southwest Limited Open Bridle Champion

If the bloodlines of this horse sound familiar, look no further than the Open Bridle National Champion, Smart Time Tuck. You are not seeing double. Smart Tucker Smoke, a 1996 sorrel gelding (also Senors Lil Brudder X Smoke Time Tuck X Doc Tom Tucker), is just one year older than his stellar full sibling. He has done quite well also, for his owner Donna Russo, of Gilroy, California, and his trainer for the past two years, Ramona Koch of Paicines, California.

Past victories include the 2002 Grand National Stock Horse Triumph Champion, and in 2002 the team won the saddle at Ventura for high-marking horse of the day. They were the 2003 Champions at the Reno Rodeo Cow Horse Showcase, Limited Open Bridle Champions at the VCHA Derby, and Reserve Champions in the Open Bridle there. In the 2003 Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Bridle Sweepstakes the two brothers stayed close; Smart Time Tuck taking the 4th place finish with Smart Tucker Smoke next in 5th place. Ramona Koch and Smart Tucker Smoke finished as Reserve Champions in the Limited Open Bridle division there. Koch and "Smoke" were Limited Open Champions at the Cow Horse Classic in Santa Ynez, and placed 3rd in the Open Bridle there. They were Limited Open Champions at the Derby Show in Santa Ynez, and Reserve Champions in the Open Bridle there behind – you guessed it, little brother Smart Time Tuck.

According to Koch, "Smart Tucker Smoke is overflowing with personality, he is a very smart horse, and is the best horse I have ever ridden. He is a great dry working horse and a great cow horse. He is very athletic and very honest."

Limited Open Bridle National Reserve Champion
Wish To Be Flashy
Ridden By Marc DeChamplain
Owned by Suzy DeChamplain
Points: 86 – Earnings: $1,220
Eastern Open Bridle Champion
Eastern Limited Open Bridle Champion

After Marc DeChamplain’s bridle horse, The Shriner, had a career ending injury, he was left without a horse to show. Suzy, his wife, knowing how much Marc loves to show, lent him her 10-year-old pasture pet, the palomino quarter horse, Wish To Be Flashy (Boggies Flashy Jac X Wish The World X Doc Glo). Also known as "Wishy Wonderful", he came to the DeChamplain's Heaven's Gate Farm in Trenton, Florida in 1999 when Suzy traded a Dodge truck for him. Previously she rode Wishy in NRCHA Non Pro Limited classes, finishing the year 2000 with the Georgia Reined Cow Horse Association Championship, Florida Reined Cow Horse Association and NRCHA Silver Reserve Championships. At the end of that year Wishy went to his pasture and retirement.

With Wishy, Marc didn’t expect to win a Regional title, let alone a National one! He hoped to simply place and show respectably. The little ten-year-old gelding came out of retirement and competed with so much heart and try that he carried Marc to a first or second place finish just about every time they showed. All those first and seconds added up to win both the NRCHA Eastern Region Open Bridle and Limited Open Bridle Championships. He also won the FRCHA and GRCHA affiliate year end Open Bridle and Limited Open Bridle titles.

Marc credits Wishy's giving attitude for his accomplishments, noting that the horse never gives up. In fact he believes that Wishy's mindset allows the horse to "achieve much more than he is physically capable of doing!" He added "Wishy is a happy-go-lucky, playful, enjoy-around-the-ranch horse. He gave me the pleasant surprise of carrying me to the winner's circles".

Non Pro Bridle National Champion
Guns N Rosie
Ridden by Marcia Gagnon
Owned by Marcia Gagnon
Points: 176 – Earnings: $4,409
Southwest Non Pro Bridle Champion

Although the year-end Regional Championship was a hotly contested race for Marcia Gagnon, sealing up the National Championship along the way made it just that much sweeter. Gagnon topped a field of veterans whose names have graced the NRCHA for years, and kept the Non Pro Bridle Championship safely tucked away very close to its roots. From Paso Robles, California, Gagnon lives in the very heart of the country where NRCHA was born.

In 2003 she rode a sorrel gelding with a big nickname. Dubbed ‘Hercules’ by a previous owner, 8-year-old Guns N Rosie (Young Gun X Monta Doc Rose X Montana Doc) had to prevail over a lot of tough horses to earn his year end black type. He has a history of rising to the occasion, as he carried Tom Shelly to the high fence score at the 1998 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity. In 2003 one of his highlights was earning the NRCHA Derby Horse Show Non Pro Bridle Championship for Gagnon.

She has owned and ridden Hercules for two years now. Gagnon said she was grateful to Hercules “For putting up with me trying to figure him out!” She continued, “He is an awesome fence horse. He makes the fence work easy because he is so good at it.”

She plans to continue to show Guns N Rosie in 2004.

Non Pro Bridle National Reserve Champion
King King Chex
Ridden by Harry Woolley
Owned by Harry & Sue Woolley
Points: 133 – Earnings: $1,780

Harry Woolley, of Townsend, Georgia, credits his 8-year-old gelding King King Chex (Bueno King Chex X Strip Of Chip X Chip Of Dandy) for meeting and surpassing his original goal of being in the nation's top ten ranking. Woolley was primed to go to the World Show, knowing that his horse had the talent to carry him all the way to the top.

But misfortune struck at the Orange Blossom Spectacular in Early February, just a scant two weeks before the Big Event. "King" was having a fantastic show, laying down over 144 points in the cutting there, over 8 points above his closest rival, when he strained his hock. It wasn't serious as hock strains go, but the implications were catastrophic. Instead of traveling to Texas, King languished in his pasture in Georgia the last week of February 2004.

In his estimation “The Bruce Jenner of the cow horse world”, King still carried Woolley to sustain the NRCHA National Non Pro Bridle Reserve Championship, as well as their clean sweep of the NRCHA Eastern Region Non Pro Bridle and Novice Non Pro Bridle Championships.

Three years ago Woolley, then residing in Seattle, bought "King" with team sorting in mind from a Doug Koontz, of Buhl, ID, a saddle maker who often builds the trophy saddles for that region. Koontz actually had the horse consigned for the annual Red Bluff Sale, and when the two couldn't agree on a price, Woolley bought King at the sale. He laughed, "needless to say, he topped the sale!" Woolley took his new purchase home and showed him to a young trainer from Arco named Kirk Robertson. Robertson told Woolley, "This is a REALLY nice horse, don't sort on him, try 'this' (reined cow horse) instead."

And the rest of 'this' story is history. When the Woolley's retired, they moved back to Georgia. Harry devoted his free time to King, and King just keeps getting better. Woolley insists, It's not because I'm good, King is just terrific!" He added, "Sometimes it's like he's telling me to get out of his way so he can work." Woolley describes King as, "All business. In his stall he gives you a look that says, 'I'm not a pet, just let me do my job.'"

And the talented gelding's job description is increasing, noted Woolley. "We are putting him in cutting training as a 9-year-old!"

Novice Non Pro Bridle National Champion
Master Checks
Ridden by Laurel Morias
Owned by Laurel Morias
Points: 128 – Earnings: $1,709
Southwest Novice Non Pro Bridle Reserve Champion

The Southwest Region Novice Non Pro Bridle Year-End Champion and Reserve Champion also swept the National Championships, but a 5th place World Show finish for Laurel Morias re-shuffled the order of their placings.

Laurel Morias' husband Danny, (a horse trainer) says, “Master Checks – don’t leave home without him”! And when Morias left her home in Pleasanton, California, with the 1988 dun gelding (Master Remedy X Bueno Chex Kaweah X Bueno Chex) headed for Texas, he once again came through for her in a big way.

She has owned the grand old show horse just one year, but Master Chex has a long and storied career. It began in 1991 at the NRCHA Open Snaffle Bit Futurity Championship, with Ted Robinson aboard. The horse’s list of championships includes: 1993 NRCHA Open Hackamore Champion, 1993 Salinas Open Hackamore Champions, 1994 NRCHA Open Two Rein Reserve Championship, 1995 Cow Palace Open Bridle Champion, 1997 Cow Palace Open Bridle Champion, 1999 Cow Palace Open Bridle Champion, 2002 Ricotti Triple Crown Non Pro Limited Champion, and the 2002 Hackamore Classic Novice Non Pro Reserve Champion. His life-time earnings exceed $62,252.

According to Laurel Morias, "We call him Master Checks because he’s the Master! He knows his job, he’s good at it, and he likes it. He has a plan!" Morias continued, "Master Checks has been an awesome teacher. He makes you ride him to get anything done. He doesn’t want a passenger, at the same time he has packed me down the fence. He can make his own decisions. I have to trust him; he knows more than I do!"

Novice Non Pro Bridle National Reserve Champion
HR Dualin Hickory
Ridden by Jamie Schrack
Owned by Jim and Linda Schrack
Points: 127 – Earnings: $2,024
Southwest Novice Non Pro Champion

Jamie Schrack, of Selma, California finished just one point behind Laurel Morias in the National Championship race, to secure the Novice Non Pro Bridle Reserve Championship. Schrack had a great year, including wins like the 2003 Bridle Horse Spectacular Reserve Champion; 2003 Amateur Snaffle Bit Futurity 6th place; 2003 VCHA Bridle Horse Spectacular High Fence Score; 2003 Paso Robles Mid-State Fair Snaffle Bit Futurity High Fence Score; 2003 NRCHA Exeter Spring Classic Non Pro High Weekend Score; and the 2003 VCHA Non Pro Working Cow Horse Year-end Championship.

Schrack's mount is HR Dualin Hickory, aka 'Dollar'. A 1997 Sorrel gelding (Dual Pep X Hickorys Bonanza X Doc's Hickory), she has owned him since September of 2002. She told the story of how he got his nickname, "Lance Johnston went to Texas with a friend to buy 2-year-olds for the Snaffle Bit Futurity. They each got their horse and made a $100 bet who would win the most money on them. Lance started calling him 100 dollar bill, but that was too long. Besides that, he looked like John Wayne’s horse Dollar, so Dollar it stayed." She related that under Lance Johnston, the talented gelding won the Open Reserve Championship at the Paso Robles Snaffle Bit Futurity, the Open Hackamore Championship at Santa Ynez, the Open 2 Rein at the Spring Classic, and was the Buckle winner for the 2 day show. Jamie added, "By the way, Lance won the bet!"

Describing Dollar, Jamie said, "He just has loads of personality. He loves to get attention, and he knows when he is in the spot light. When it comes to the fence, Dollar and I just click."

Open Hackamore National Champion
NMSU Truckin Chex
Ridden by Kevin Stallings
Owned by Craig Reay and Kevin Stallings
Points: 128 – Earnings: $5,378
Southwest Open Hackamore Reserve Champion

Kevin Stallings, of Tucson, Arizona, had a serious accident with his tractor truck and rig on the way to the 2003 AQHA World Show. Their trip to the NRCHA World Show proved to be less eventful. Now recovered from injuries, Stallings and NMSU Truckin Chex, a stalwart bay stallion by Nu Chex To Cash, out of NMSU Doc Truckle Cj X CJ Sugar, owned by Kevin Stallings and Craig Reay, showed to a 4th place finish at the NRCHA World Show. The points the team earned in Stephenville were just enough to edge out the only horse in their region that previously had them bested (Topsails Rien Maker and Russell Dilday). And both horses from the Southwest Region had a big enough lead compiled that they were untouchable by other World Show finishers.

Better known as ‘Elvis’, the grit in the horse served him well after the earlier accident, as he was unflappable and finished in the top ten at the AQHA World Showl. Stallings said “Elvis is the best minded horse I have ever rode. He is so relaxed and quiet until you ask him to move – then he will give you his all. He has so much try and is so willing. ‘Yes Sir – I can’ is the only thing he has on his mind.”

Other wins for 2003 for Elvis included the Idaho Reined Cow Horse Association Open Hackamore Championship, the Colorado Reined Cow Horse Association Open Hackamore, the NRCHA Stallion Stakes Hackamore Championship, the Sun Country Circuit Junior Cow Horse Circuit Championship, NRCHA Futurity Horse Show Open Hackamore top ten, the NRCHA Hackamore Classic Circuit Championship, and the CRCA Open Derby Championship.

“That’s why we call him Elvis,” concluded Stallings, “Because he is the King!”

Open Hackamore National Reserve Champion
Topsails Rien Maker
Ridden by Russell Dilday
Owned by Russell Dilday and Kevin Cantrelle
Points: 87 – Earnings: $4,317
Southwest Open Hackamore Champion

Russell Dilday didn’t get to come to the first ever NRCHA World Show. He was busy at home celebrating the birth of his (and wife, Tana’s) second son, young mister Ace Dilday, born February 25, 2004. Still, Dilday’s Championship in the Southwest Region was powerful enough to ride out the challengers and earn him the Open Hackamore National Reserve Championship.

The 2003 West Coast Horse Expo's Magnificent 7 Champion, Russell Dilday is working these days on building a substantial resumé for Topsails Rienmaker. A 1999 Sorrel Stallion by reining legend Topsail Cody, out of Jameen Gay X Toby Gay Bar, Dilday calls him 'Slider' because "he has always been a natural stopper". Dilday has had Slider since the horse was a 2-year-old. In that time Dilday has piloted him to win the Reserve Limited Open Snaffle Bit Futurity Championship at Reno, and the Limited Open Championship at the Fresno Futurity. In 2003 some of their wins included 7th in the Open Hackamore Classic at the Snaffle Bit Futurity in Reno, 3rd in the Open Hackamore at the Cow Horse Classic in Santa Ynez, 3rd in the Open Hackamore at the Hackamore Classic in Winnemucca, 2nd and 3rd at the Aloha Classic, and 4th at the California Mid-State Fair. The team won the Open and Intermediate Open Cow Work at the Valley Cow Horse Association Derby, finishing 4th overall in the finals there.

Dilday talked about his horse, "Topsails Rienmaker is a perfect gentleman with tons of grit when you need it. He is the most willing horse I've ever ridden and he has a heart as big as a house. Sliding and turning with a cow is what he does best."

Non Pro Hackamore National Champion
Plan To Win
Ridden by Jo Anne Carollo
Owned by Jim and Jo Anne Carollo
Points: 138 – Earnings: $4,097
Southwest Non Pro Hackamore Champion

A 5th place finish in the finals at the NRCHA World Championships guaranteed the National Championship for Jo Anne Carollo, of Atascadero, California. Carollo is one of the more highly decorated Non Pros showing in NRCHA events these days. She can now add the 2003 Non Pro Hackamore National Championship title to her long list including: the 1999 AQHA World Champion Amateur working Cow Horse Champion, the 1995 APHA World Champion Working Cow Horse, the 1997, 1999, and 2001 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Non Pro Champion, and the 2002 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Non Pro Hackamore Champion.

Plan To Win, one of her favorite horses, is a 6-year-old bay and white tobiano paint by Carollo’s stallion A Master Plan (by Master Remedy) out of My Flashy Lady by Double Diamond. He is called 'Pete' by the Carollos (because the patch around his eye reminded people of the dog on the TV show Little Rascals). Pete is a homebred raised on the ranch of Jim and Jo Anne Carollo.

'Pete' has other titles on his list too. Among them are: 2001 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Non Pro Champion, Limited and Open Finalist; 2001 Pacific Coast Cutting Horse Association Futurity Finalist, Non Pro and Amateur; and the 2002 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Non Pro Hackamore Champion.

Carollo describes Pete as, "Very cowy, his personality is almost arrogant, and he has a lot of try. We cut on him and have recently started him in roping." In a few years she would like to go to the World’s Greatest Horseman Event on him.

Non Pro Hackamore National Reserve Champion
Playboy Reno
Ridden By Mike Dobbs
Owned by Mike Dobbs
Points: 112 – Earnings: $3,896
Eastern Non Pro Hackamore Champion

Mike Dobbs, of Williston, Florida, did his utmost to earn a National title to take back home to Florida. He rode into the midst of a group of the toughest Non Pro competitors in the business, and emerged a 4th place finisher at the NRCHA World Show in Stephenville, Texas, sealing the National title.

He came a long ways in just one year. A month before the start of the 2003 show year, Dobbs bought Playboy Reno (Playboys Bonita X Renos Hickory Belle X Docs Hickory) from John Hindman, who had started and trained the sorrel gelding. Then nicknamed Junior for his resemblance to his sire Playboy Bonita, owned by Delbert Hindman, Dobbs confessed "I call him 'June Bug' when it's just him and me!" Dobbs said " I knew when I first rode him we would get along, but it took the first half of the season to get squared away. Now he's trusting me on the dry work, and I'm trusting him on the cow work, and when we both do our jobs it comes out pretty good!"

By the end of the year, "taking one show at a time" brought Mike Dobbs and Playboy Reno to the National Non Pro Hackamore Reserve Championship. Dobbs said "Junior's talent is going down the fence and circling up. He loves his cow work!" He added "Junior's personality reminds me of a toddler. He is always looking for things to do, or get into, but it's always in fun".

Limited Open Hackamore National Champion
Son Of A Poppa Chex
Ridden by Mark Matson and Margie Allen
Owned by Pete and DeDe Peterson
Points: 74 – Earnings: $2,014
Southwest Limited Open Hackamore Champion

Anyone that has ever tried it will affirm that the true test of a relationship between a horseman and a horsewoman, is when they are required to share the same horse. An unfortunate twist of events last spring caused Son Of A Poppa Chex, a 1998 bay gelding (Poppa Chex X Miss Max Lil Peppy X Ima Little Peppy Doc) to carry two different jockeys on his way to the Southwest Region Limited Open Hackamore Championship, and ultimately the National Championship.

Mark Matson and Margie Allen of Temecula, California had recently moved to Temecula, California and opened a new training facility there. That’s when disaster struck. According to Matson, “This year at the Exeter Spring Classic Son Of A Poppa Chex won the Limited Open Hackamore and qualified to come back for the Saddle Shoot-Out. He drew a bad cow and was having a terrible go when the cow fell and ‘Sonny’ toppled over me. When the dust cleared I had broken my right arm and my right elbow.“ On the ride home from the hospital he informed Margie that she would have to take over the reins on the horse!

Regarding Son Of A Poppa Chex, they agree. Matson said, “When I’m showing him he gives me the same trip almost every time.” Allen concurred, “Sonny’ is big and beautiful – very laid back. He was really consistent in placing in the money at most of his shows”. Margie Allen rode Sonny to the 2003 SCRCHA Open and Limited Open Hackamore Championship. She said, “After showing at approximately 8 shows, Son Of A Poppa Chex never finished less than second, unless I zeroed him. Mark took the horse back for Paso Robles 2003!”

Limited Open Hackamore National Reserve Champion
Smokum Cutter
Ridden by Margie Allen
Owned by Margie Allen
Points: 66 – Earnings: $1,602
Southwest Limited Open Hackamore Reserve Champion

Margie Allen said, “I bought Smokum Cutter as a long yearling, hoping to show him in reining and cow horse events. This was the first horse I tried to make and show." She added, "Of course it took a lot of help from people like Donnie Bricker and Ruben Mageno to get me off on the right track. After a long road of continuous learning I was lucky enough to have had some wins along the way!”

A 1998 gray gelding, Smokum Cutter (Cutter Freckles X Berts Paula X Young Paul Bert) has won several honors for his owner, including: 2001 NRHA Limited Non Pro CRHA Futurity Champion, 2002 NRCHA Limited Open Hackamore Silver Year-End Champion, SCRCHA Reserve Open and Limited Open Hackamore Year-End Champion, and SCRCHA Open Two Rein Reserve Champion.

Allen said, "I call him Smoke because he’s grey. He’s really smart and likes to get into trouble. He’s very physical and talented with a pretty look."

On a low note, she explained, “Smoke suffered an injury prior to the World Show and couldn't go. I am glad to see that only Smoke had a chance in the National standings to catch his barn mate – Son Of A Poppa Chex (SW Region Hackamore Champion). If we had to sit it out, I’m glad it will benefit Sonny." Indeed, the pair hung on for the National Reserve Championship.

Open Two Rein National Champion
Command Too
Ridden by Dan Roeser
Owned by Phil and Cheryle Andre
Points: 110 – Earnings: $3,995
Northwest Open Two Rein Champion

The sole representative from the Northwest Region to garner National Championships, Dan Roeser, of Marsing, Idaho, dominated the Open Two Rein. It comes as no surprise as Roeser, a respected horseman, judge and trainer, has spent many years in service to the NRCHA, and has shown some of the finest horses.

Currently serving as the NRCHA Affiliate Committee Chairperson, Roeser has tirelessly encouraged all newcomers to the sport, serving as a coordinator to help young affiliates find top trainers to do clinics, and many times serving as clinician himself. Ranch raised, Roeser learned at a young age the value of a fine cow horse. He credits his late father, Jim, for setting his feet on the path he has chosen for his life’s work.

Command Too (Chieftain Command X Shes A Tucker Too X Doc Tom Tucker) is owned by some of Roeser’s favorite clients, Phil and Cheryle Andre of Caldwell, Idaho. Roeser said, “Phil and Cheryle were the first people I ever trained a horse for. They have been great friends and supporters for 24 years. Any success I have had in the industry on their horses or those of other clients, I feel in large part is due to them. They have had some very accomplished horses over the years and they deserve it all!”

Described by Roeser as “quiet and gentle”, Command Too was in her freshman year of really being hauled to shows. Roeser credits her consistency and “big stops” as high points, and the Andre’s plan to show her, and eventually place her in their brood mare band.

Open Two Rein National Reserve Champion
Umbrella Dual Smoke
Ridden by Dan Roeser
Owned by Jacki Yancey
Points: 105 - Earnings: $3,832
Northwest Open Two Rein Reserve Champion

The second half of Dan Roeser’s team to “clean sweep” the National Two Rein Championships, was a 1998 bay mare named Umbrella Dual Smoke (Mr Cool Dual X Dazzling Ginger Rey X Dazzling Doc). Owned by Jacki Yancey, of Hermiston, Oregon, and nicknamed “Brella”, the mare has been at Roeser’s training facility for 2 years now.

“She’s always ready to go” said Roeser about the mare. He added, “She is really laid back until she gets in the arena, though.” He credited her fence work for her success, and noted, “She is a big stopper.”

A 2003 highlight for Roeser on Brella, was her Two Rein victory at the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity. The mare earned a Morrison Bronze trophy for her owner there, and Roeser was pleased for her owners. He noted that he especially appreciates Jacki Yancey’s faith in the Roeser’s training program.

Plans for Brella are to move her into the bridle in 2004.

Youth Bridle National Champion
Tux N Tails
Ridden by John Gamble
Owned by John Gamble
Points: 37 – Earnings: $975
Southwest Youth Bridle Champion

Fourteen year old John Gamble, of Gilroy, California, made a clean sweep of things last summer in his Southwest Region. The wins were enough to rack up plenty of points and help Gamble to prevail as the 2003 National Youth Bridle Champion. Some of his regional wins included the Youth Bridle Championships at the Exeter Spring Classic, the NRCHA Derby at Santa Ynez, the Cow Horse Classic at Santa Ynez, and the Aloha Classic.

His mount is 19-year-old Tux N Tails (Doc Tom Tucker X Fritz Eleven X Fritz Command), aka Tux. Gamble has owned the good old bay gelding for three years now.

Tux is an old-pro seasoned campaigner, listing wins like the Idaho Snaffle Bit Futurity Champion, the Hackamore champion at the SBF in Reno, the Open Bridle Champion at Cow Palace and Salinas, and he is a NRCHA Supreme Champion Cow Horse.

John cautioned not to think of Tux as old, "He thinks he is a colt and is wild! He still has the talent and desire to be the best. His ability to turn a cow on the fence is amazing."

Youth Bridle National Reserve Champion
Plumbs Power
Ridden by Alex Miller
Owned by Kelly and Peggy Miller
Points: 19 – Earnings: $258
Southwest Youth Bridle Reserve Champion

Right behind John Gamble on Tux N Tails, Alex Miller, of Reedley, California, completed the Southwest sweep of the National Youth Bridle Championships. Miller is an 18 year old Senior at Reedley High School. A highlight for Alex was when he got his drivers license. His parents got him a truck and a horse trailer so he can go on his own now. His riding is clearly at the top of his priority list! He said, Between school and work every day, I don’t have time left for anything but riding."

Plumbs Power is a 1991 bay mare (Plumb Dry X Bingo Power X No Doors). Together they have been AQHYA World Qualifiers, the PCQHA 2003 Youth 14 to 18 Working Cow Horse Champion, and took the PCQHA 2003 Youth 14 to 18 Reining 8th place.

Alex calls his mare 'Plumb', "Because her previous owners called her Sugar. When I got her she wasn’t so sweet, so we called her Plumb. She is sweet all the time now, but Plumb stuck." He has owned her 2½ years. He said, "Plumb is my first horse. She had some training in reining and working cow, but was shown very little. He continued, "We learned together. I think because of that we have a special bond." Alex wanted to say thank you to Ernie Beal; "If he had not given me a chance to ride his horses and saw a talent in me that no one else knew I had, I would not be riding today. He helped me shape my future and hopefully a career in the horse industry."

Youth Limited National Champion
Holdens Carrie Cody
Ridden By Clint Malone
Owned by Kim Malone
Points: 81.5
Eastern Youth Limited Reserve Champion

The really big World Championship in Stephenville jumped Clint Malone, of Plant City, Florida right up to his first National Championship as well! The 15-year-old former barrel racer, admitted skateboarder and paintball fan, said he just started the year in NRCHA competition "to get experience and improve my horse's abilities".

Although he had previously qualified for the National Barrel Horse Association Youth World Show on another horse, Malone could tell his 5-year-old black quarter horse mare Holdens Carrie Cody (Piaves Cody X Peppy O Nita X Doc o' Bell), needed to be pointed in a different direction. Originally a barrel horse prospect, Malone quipped "she wasn't as fast as she thought she was!" But she is plenty fast enough to catch a cow, and the team seems to have found their place in the NRCHA in a big way. Nicknamed ‘Pumpkin’, Clint confessed that his horse has an unusual affinity for drinking Mr. Pibb right out of the bottle! Perhaps some of the other youth will be looking into the “Pibb power” theory, as it certainly has done Holdens Carrie Cody no harm.

Clint credits God and his family, his friends and fellow competitors for their encouragement and support, and thanks his dad for working with him every day. He said that this whole year was really special. In a perfect ending, they had lots of World Show and National Championship prizes to take back to Florida. Clint’s mother Mona confided, “He had been asking for a new saddle for some time now, and I told him he would have to wait as we are building a house. Was he ever surprised when he saw the trophy saddle he won!”

Youth Limited National Reserve Champion
The Great Gonzo
Ridden By Chloe Gray
Owned by John and Julie Faulkner
Points: 79
Eastern Youth Limited Champion

Part of the winning Florida team also making the trip to Texas for the NRCHA World Show, Chloe Gray, of Tampa, Florida, celebrated her 15th birthday with the National Youth Limited Reserve Championship. Most teens involved with horses would agree that is a powerful birthday present.

Chloe Gray already has her list of thank-you's in order. She started by thanking John and Julie Faulkner, of Dade City, Florida, for the opportunity to ride their sorrel gelding - The Great Gonzo (Pines Fourway Stop X Diamonds Ruby X Mr Diamond Dude). She called them "two of the most gracious people she has ever had the privilege to meet".

Chloe quickly added trainer, George Aldridge "for his patience and guidance, Kenny Luker for keeping her horse grounded, and my parents for their love and support. You guys are awesome!" She added thanks to fellow competitor Clint Malone for the great competition, and like so many horsemen, ultimately recognized "My Lord Jesus Christ, for giving me such a love for horses and the talent to ride them."

The Great Gonzo, nicknamed "Cole", is described by Gray as "hardcore to the bone, tough like a bodybuilder." "He has a heart like the energizer battery", she added: "He just keeps going and going no matter what tries to stop him."

Non Pro Limited National Champion
Wee Bill
Ridden By Beth Sharpe
Owned by Beth Sharpe
Points: 320 – Earnings: $1,895
Eastern Non Pro Limited Champion

In an apparent understatement, Beth Sharpe, of Ocala, Florida, describes herself; "I'm very competitive and I take showing very seriously!" Looking at the points earned in one year in one event (a whopping total of 320) it’s obvious that Sharpe had winning on her mind. She can now add a National Championship to her list of accomplishments.

In fact, starting back in July 2002 Sharpe’s goal for 2003 was simply to win everything. With this clear objective, Sharpe made the decision to place her 1986 dun gelding Wee Bill (Wee Doc X Hollywood Gem X Hollywood Bill) on the sidelines for a long rest in November 2002 and save him for the 2003 season. The plan worked. In 2003 the Sharpe/Wee Bill team ruled the NRCHA Eastern Region Non Pro Limited, as well as the FRCHA and the GRCHA. With 302 total year end points, almost double any other NRCHA competitor in any class; competitors from other regions were calling the NRCHA office to see if it was a typing error!

Every time Sharpe stepped in the show pen, her game plan was the same - to personally, physically, and mentally have herself and Bill prepared to be the best they could be. Beth has always believed that Wee Bill was special. Two years ago, Bill came to her barn with many issues that needed to be addressed. There was no doubt that Bill had the talent, but regaining his trust in humans and getting his mind right took many dedicated days of just being his friend.

Coming from a diversified background, showing everything from halter to English and barrels to reining, for Sharpe showing has always been about the enjoyment of the game. The FRCHA and its cow horse events came along just in time to give her another challenge and the potential for more fun.

Non Pro Limited National Reserve Champion
Haidinlin Girl
Ridden by Cindy Wynn
Owned by Henry Wynn
Points: 166.5 – Earnings: $900

On her way to the National Reserve Championship, Cindy Wynn, of Pavo, Georgia, rode her 1998 chestnut mare, Haidinlin Girl (Docs Haidas Playboy X Sun Flame Lindsey X Eternal Sun Flame). Nicknamed "HAIDIN", Wynn said, "Henry (My husband) bought her when she was two. I have ridden her one year. She's sweet, willing, happy in the show pen and is extremely forgiving of my many "pilot" errors! She's a very pretty mover and she likes her job. She's a young horse with a non pro rider aboard and she always gives one hundred percent!"

Wynn was quick to share credit for her successful year, starting with, "My husband Henry! He trained this mare (and the horse I showed last year), kept her going, hauled me to all of the shows except one, built the saddle I ride in, and made most of the equipment I show in! He's the one who encouraged me, fussed at me (a lot sometimes), shared my joys, and felt my disappointments. He's a truly gifted and talented person!"

Wynn's gratitude didn't stop there. She explained, "The Bible tell us in Proverbs 3:5-6, 'Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not unto your own understanding. In all ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths'. So, for anything I have accomplished, I first of all give glory to the Lord. He has blessed me with a good horse, a loving husband, and three fun children!" She said the best part of showing in 2003 was "always having my family with me (my husband Henry and our three kids) and our Border Collie "Hank"."