By Larri Jo StarkeyThe American Quarter Horse JournalFebruary 20, 2014
Jake Telford rides Sheza Dancingdiamond to win the open two-rein finals February 20 at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions for owner Del Bell. (Larri Jo Starkey photo) For more photos from the competition, scroll to the slide show below. Did you take a photo at the competition? Send it to Becky Newell at firstname.lastname@example.org, and the best ones could appear in the Journal.
Two mares with close connections to Holy Cow Performance Horses placed first and second February 20 at the National Reined Cow Horse Association Celebration of Champions.
AQHA Professional Horseman Jake Telford of Caldwell, Idaho, rode Sheza Dancingdiamond to the title in open two-rein and One Time Rey Jay to the reserve championship in Fort Worth, Texas.
“It couldn’t have turned out much better, that’s for sure,” Jake said after the 1-2 finish. “I’d had a few bobbles in the prelims (on Sheza Dancingdiamond), lead departure issues. We got those cleaned up (before the finals) and drew a good cow.”
Sheza Dancingdiamond is a 2007 sorrel mare by Diamond J Star and out of Sheza Shinette by Shining Spark. She is owned by Del and Susan Bell of Eagle, Idaho. The mare was a finalist at the 2010 NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity and the win in Fort Worth pushed her to $51,146.14 in NRCHA earnings. Sheza Dancingdiamond was bred by Holy Cow Performance Horses of Santa Ynez, California, the owners of One Time Rey Jay, the 2010 Snaffle Bit reserve champion.
“(One Time Rey Jay) was really good in the reined work (February 20),” Jake said. “She’s a pretty steady-Eddie for me. She drew a little tougher cow, and she’s a great fence horse, and she really handled the tough one, but didn’t mark quite as high.”
Sheza Dancingdiamond’s score was 441.5, while One Time Rey Jay scored 429. One Time Rey Jay is a 2007 red roan mare by One Time Pepto and out of Hickorys Red Rey by Doc’s Hickory. She was bred by Ruby View Quarter Horses of Elko, Nevada, and had $107,061.53 in NRCHA earnings before the Celebration of Champions.
“You always dream of it working out 1-2, but it seldom happens,” Jake said. “It’s a long way down here to Fort Worth, an expensive trip, and (the owners) had faith in me. Without them, I wouldn’t be here.”
Both mares will be retired to the broodmare band, Jake said.
Kirk Druey of Adamstown, Maryland, flew a long way to win his NRCHA championship. Riding Oaks In Montana, Kirk laid down a score of 430.5 to top the 10-rider field of finalists in non-pro hackamore.
“This is a good way to end the year,” Kirk said.
Oaks In Montana is a 2009 sorrel gelding by Mister Montana Nic and out of Oak Ill Be by Ill Be Smart. He was bred by KC Performance Horses LLC of Bayfield, Colorado, and had $19,695.38 in NRCHA earnings before the Celebration of Champions.
“He just felt really good (today),” Kirk said. “He’s been sore all week because he overreached right before he got here, so I fell apart in the Derby in the fence work, so I was hoping for a little redemption. He just felt really smooth. Stopped good and turned around for me. We got lucky and got a good cow and that’s it.”
Kirk plans to compete in derbies in 2014 and then to finally be able to take the horse home to Maryland with him so he can ride him daily. “Austin” currently resides with AQHA Professional Horseman Todd Crawford in Blanchard, Oklahoma, where Todd trains him.
“Todd’s done such a great job with him,” Kirk said.
Other winners of the day were:
Intermediate non-pro bridle – Parke Greeson of Wolfforth, Texas, on Lenas Alley, a 2005 sorrel gelding by Smart Little Lena and out of Doc Alley by Dual Pep, bred by Jack E. Silver Jr. of Pryor, Oklahoma
Non-pro two-rein – Tish Wilhite of Clovis, California, on Smokin My Cash, a 2007 bay gelding by Smokums Prize and out of Cash My Lean by Lean With Me, bred by Ted Robinson of Oak View, California
Limited open hackamore – Diamond J Starlite, a 2008 sorrel mare by Diamond J Star and out of Little Chickalene by Smart Little Lena, owned by Big Creek Quarter Horses of Byars, Oklahoma, and ridden by Ross Ericsson
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