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Two-for-one night for Morgan Ilic and Over N Over at the 2018 APHA World Show’s Breeders’ Trust 2-Year-Old Hunter Under Saddle Stakes

Over N Over might just be 2 years old, but the 2016 sorrel overo gelding owned and shown by Morgan Ilic of Gainesville, Texas, looked like a show pen veteran in the 2018 Breeders’ Trust 2-Year-Old Hunter Under Saddle Stakes. Morgan and “Donald” laid claim to the winner’s share of both the Open and Limited purses in the class, combining for a total payout of almost $15,000.

Purchased in Fall 2016 as a weanling—during the week of the presidential election, as it stands, leading to the ginger gelding’s nickname—Morgan had an inkling that Donald might be a special one. Bred by Jill Roraff of Winona, Minnesota, Donald is by Repeated In Red (QH) and out of He Sent Me Roses.

“I started him and then I gave him to my boyfriend, Dustin Eickenhorst, to finish—he’s had him all summer, working really hard, and then he put me on to show,” Morgan said.

A big-bodied gelding with a personality to match, Donald seems to want to please.

“Today, he was perfect. He was there for me every step of the way; any adjustment I needed to make, he let me make it. I couldn’t have asked for him to be any better,” the horsewoman said. “He’s been easy from day one, so strong. All we had to do was stay out of his way and just do it.”

But Morgan’s big win didn’t come without a little bit of extra luck.

“I forgot my belt and my pants were falling down, and Julian Harris let me borrow one, but we had to zip tie it on. It was a lucky belt. He said he won a class here last year wearing that belt, so it brought me good luck,” she said.

Though the future is undoubtedly bright for Donald, Morgan says she doesn’t have any immediate, concrete plans for his future.

“We just kind of go with the flow—we let them let us know what they’re ready for. We’d love to keep him in the barn; he’s so fun and easy.

Shocked at her big windfall from a single class, Morgan is grateful for the support team who has helped her and Donald earn their first champion rosette on the World Show stage.

“We need to thank the Lord Jesus Christ—he’s helped us a lot and we wouldn’t have been able to do it without him—and we have a huge team: my mom, Dustin and Ryan Painter. A lot of people have helped us along the way, and I couldn’t thank them all.”

Unofficial results follow:

Open Division

1st OVER N OVER shown by Morgan Ilic earning $10,349
2nd RISE ABOVE shown by Laura Spell earning $8,050
3rd WOO HOO shown by Keith Miller earning $4,600
4th BEYOND A COWBOY shown by Erin Jeter
5th ALL BE HOT shown by Carlee Christian


Limited Division

1st OVER N OVER shown by Morgan Ilic earning $4,600
2nd BEYOND A COWBOY shown by Erin Jeter earning $3,066


New for 2018, all Breeders’ Trust-enrolled horses—Regular Registry and Solid Paint-Bred—are eligible to compete in the Breeders’ Trust Pleasure Stakes classes at the APHA World Championship Show. Horses are enrolled into the Breeders’ Trust Pleasure Stakes as yearlings and then pay an entry fee during their 2-year-old year; read more about the program here.


 [Reprinting all of part of this story is permitted, so long as credit is given to the Paint Horse Journal and a link provide back to apha.com.]

About APHA
The American Paint Horse Association is the world’s second-largest international equine breed association, registering more than a million horses in 59 nations and territories since it was founded. APHA promotes, preserves and provides meaningful experiences with Paint Horses.