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Good Time to win

From releases and staff reports - October 15th, 2014 - Cover Story

1410B Cover ShotRENO, Nev. — Corey Cushing, a National Reined Cow Horse Association Million Dollar Rider from Scottsdale, Ariz., captured the 2014 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Championship riding Good Time (One Time Pepto x Dual Nurse x Dual Pep), owned by Lynne Wurzer, Tacoma, Wash. The Snaffle Bit Futurity Open finals were held Saturday, Oct. 4, at the Reno-Sparks Livestock Events Center.

Cushing guided the sorrel gelding to a composite 660 score (219 herd/219.5 rein/221.5 cow) to win the $100,000 Snaffle Bit Futurity Championship, the second of his career. Cushing won his first title in 2012 with CD Diamond (CD Olena x Shiners Diamond Girl x ShiningSpark), bred and owned by San Juan Ranch.

It was an emotional win for Cushing, who wiped tears as he rode Good Time into the spotlight at the Reno Livestock Events Center to accept the award.

“I couldn’t be any happier right now. What an outstanding horse this is,” Cushing said.

Two-time NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity champion Les Vogt wins this year's Open Two Rein title on his Nic It Smartly.

Two-time NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity champion Les Vogt wins this year’s Open Two Rein title on his Nic It Smartly.

Primo Morales photo

Good Time and Cushing were neck-and-neck through the first two events of the finals with Call Me Mitch (Metallic Cat x Miss Hickory Hill x Doc’s Hickory), shown by Phillip Ralls, Paso Robles, and owned by Estelle Roitblat. In the herd work, Call Me Mitch earned the high score of the round, a 222, while Good Time was tied for the second-high scorewith a 219.

Next, in the rein work, Call Me Mitch and Good Time marked identical 219.5 scores, which meant, in true reined cow horse fashion, it all was going to come down to the fence work. Good Time drew up well ahead of Call Me Mitch in the working order, controlling the cow for a big 221.5 and a commanding lead. Call Me Mitch needed a 219 or better to move Good Time out of Championship contention, but the cow took Ralls and the roan horse around the corner on their second turn, incurring penalties and leaving them with a 202 in the cow work. Call Me Mitch fi nished in a tie for 6th place, taking home $27,500.

“Phillip and I — we’re great friends, and I knew he was going to be a huge threat coming in,” Cushing said.

Solid herd and rein scores set Corey Cushing up for a 221 fence work and the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open win on Lynne Wurzer's Good Time, earning $100,000.

Solid herd and rein scores set Corey Cushing up for a 221 fence work and the NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open win on Lynne Wurzer’s Good Time, earning $100,000.

Primo Morales photo

With three horses in the Snaffle Bit Futurity Finals, more than any other competitor, Cushing admitted it was a challenge to stay focused. He credited his wife, Kristen, and his team of assistants for keeping him prepared.

Defending NRCHA SnaffleBit Futurity Non Pro Champion Tammy Jo Hays of Texas returned to win the 2014 title on Miss Prize Maker (Topsails Rien Maker x Miss Colonels Prize), owned by Hayes and Walter Greeman, and she earned the $17,762.40 winner’s purse.

But Mike Miller of Big Piney, Wyo., shined in Non Pro competition, taking home more than $22,000 in earnings from finishes high on the leader board. In addition to the Non Pro reserve title behind Hays by 1.5 points, Miller took his Firecat Flashenfever (Playboys Buck Fever x Firecat Cash) to the Intermediate Non Pro Championship by 12.5 points, and he had the top Non Pro Cow Work, topping Hayes by a point, 218-217.

Last year’s NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Champions Nick Dowers and Time For The Diamond (One Time Pepto x Diamonds With Style) returned to Reno and picked up where they had left off, winning the Open Hackamore Championship and its $8,680 purse. They nipped Monica Caetano on Dual Chexx (Dual Rey x Starlight Chexx), by a half-point. Dual Chexx is owned by James and Gay Ver Steeg.

Two-time NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity Open Champion Les Vogt beautifully showed his Nic It Smartly (Nic It In Th e Bud x Shining Smartly) to the Open Two Rein Championship. (Vogt’s Horsetrader column, “More With Les”, starts a new season this issue on page 72).

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