Seven top competitors were celebrated November 12 at the 2016 APHA World Championship Show. Meet the Open all-around and high-point winners, and read their full stories—along with complete coverage of the World Show—in the January 2017 Paint Horse Journal. Subscribe, renew or extend your PHJ subscription today to make sure you don’t miss these great articles.
Sometimes things just fall into place, and when that happens, it’s perfectly fine to sit back and enjoy the sweet serendipity.After a 2015 APHA World Show that was beyond their wildest dreams, owner Dominic Destefano of Edmond, Oklahoma, and trainer Mason Lyon were happy to let the chips fall where they may for I Got Em Talkin at the 2016 show.
“This year was the first World Show that I didn’t have any expectations,” Dominic said. “We just wanted to have a good time with everyone and promote breeding to him; it wasn’t about going out there and winning.”
Ever the show horse, “Buzz” was consistent in the show pen, racking up three more championship titles—winning Senior Pleasure Driving, Senior Hunter Hack and Utility Driving, and earning a reserve in Jumping. The effort helped Buzz repeat his 2015 wins as the World Show’s All-Around Open Horse and High-Point English Horse. The 2010 gray overo stallion also helped Christy Christensen capture the All-Around Novice Amateur award earlier in the show.
“We started out just hoping Christy did well. But when we saw that Buzz was performing well as usual, we figured why not give it a shot again?” Dominic said. “We were so proud and humbled to win the All-Around Open horse and High Point English Horse title last year, we never thought we’d have the opportunity to do it again. But when that opportunity arose, we had to go for it. Winning them two years in a row, and then adding the Novice Amateur all-around in there as well, was really the icing on the cake.”
Sired by I Got Charisma and out of Fight Over Emmie (TB), Buzz was bred by Deb and Eric Jarvis of Kaufman, Texas. The reserve All-Around Open Horse was Rolex N Starlight, a 2011 bay tobiano stallion by A Tru Rolex and out of Paper Dolly; he was bred and is owned by Joni Voloshin of Craig, Colorado. The Reserve High-Point English Horse was All About The Swing, a 2006 sorrel overo gelding by All Time Fancy and out of Luvs To Zip; he was bred by Carol Brown of Kansas City, Kansas, and is owned by Anne Rosen of Indian Hills, Colorado.
All-Around Solid Paint-Bred: Irresistible Appeal
Rebecca Osborne of Wheat Ridge, Colorado, and Irresistible Appeal showcased their powerful partnership at the World Show, securing the All-Around Solid Paint-Bred award. Rebecca and “Bentley” earned a world championship in Solid Paint-Bred Trail as well as Top Five finishes in Solid Paint-Bred 2-Year-Old & Older Geldings and Solid Paint-Bred Hunter Under Saddle.
“I’ve done everything from dressage to jumping to Western to trail riding. He truly is an all-around horse,” Rebecca said. “Whatever you ask of him, he always tries his hardest.”
By Pleasurableconclusion and out of Zooha Little Angle (TB), the 2009 sorrel solid gelding is trained by Karen Banister of Brighton, Colorado, and was bred by John and Kari Reeg of Genoa, Nebraska.
High-Point Exhibitor Award: Shannon Gillespie
Through two tough weeks of World Show competition, trainer Shannon Gillespie of Whitesboro, Texas, piloted a bevy of talented horses into the John Justin Arena. While her performances brought cheers and championships for thrilled clients, they also carried her close to the top of a different competition: the chase for the high-point exhibitor award.
Sitting in the Top Three on the final show day, Shannon shot to the top with a series of stellar rides in Junior and Senior Western Riding. The Junior and Senior Paints who carried Shannon to this award are The Wow Factor, Im First N Line, Lazy Luvah, BMQ The Jig Is Up, Seems Like Heaven, Cool Hotrod and The Only Kiss To Envy.
Trainer Mason Lyon of Fort Worth, Texas, received the reserve high-point exhibitor award. Mason rode I Got Em Talkin, All She Wrote, A Southern Fancy and Secret Treasure to earn the award.
High-Point Amateur Power Performance Award: Val Baker & Retropep
It takes a lot to keep Lt. Col. Val Baker away from the World Show—overseas deployments haven’t made her miss the pinnacle APHA show, so it stands to reason that a bit of oral surgery and toe surgery the week before the 2016 World Show wouldn’t get in her way either.
“You don’t ride on your toes,” Val said. “I’ve been walking around like a duck; that’s why I didn’t tie down or do goat-tying—the doc recommended not to do that. But it’s not going to stop me from coming; I’ve had far bigger roadblocks that haven’t kept me from coming. You’ve got to be dedicated.”
And dedicated she was. The horsewoman from La Vernia, Texas, competed aboard her two veteran Paints: Capital Business and Retropep. “Cappy” won the Amateur Heading world championship, but Retropep proved the power of constancy, placing third across the board with Val in heading, heeling, steer stopping and breakaway. That proved enough to capture the inaugural High-Point Amateur Power Performance award, presented to the duo who earns the most points in cattle, speed and ranch events.
“He’s always the bridesmaid, so he finally got to be on top for once. He’s a consistent little horse,” Val said about “Retro.” “I really appreciate that APHA put this together to recognize the faster events—those events that require a little more speed and guts—and that Elite sponsored this saddle. It’s very rewarding to be the first one to win it.”
Retropep is a 1996 bay tobiano gelding by Retrospect and out of RM Misty Peppy (QH); he was bred by Fred and Pene Levy of El Cajon, California. The reserve High-Point Amateur Power Performance award was earned by Ryan Brewer of Seagraves, Texas, and Poco Tinker Bar, a 1998 black tobiano stallion by Tinker Too Bar and out of Poco Ebony Doc (QH); he was bred by Lasater Pump Service of Lamesa, Texas, and is owned by Perry and Dawn Brewer of Seagraves.
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