by Alexis BennettThe American Quarter Horse Journal
Sid Miller of Stephenville, Texas, ropes on Big Smokin Wonder to win the world championship in tie-down roping November 14 at the 2013 AQHA World Championship Show.
Once more, Sid Miller of Stephenville, Texas, and Big Smokin Wonder are winners.
“She has the attitude of the winner,” Sid said of "Pearl" after his win November 14, at the 2013 AQHA World Championship Show in tie-down roping.
And after multiple AQHA world championships and two PRCA horse of the year awards, she has proven her mettle as a competitor in the rope box no matter the rider.
Sid has won on her, and she’ll carry even the toughest PRCA rodeo competitors.
At age 16, she is making her fifth trip the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo this year and she will be joined by several full and half siblings.
Pearl is a 1997 sorrel mare by Big As I Am and out of Lucky Smokin Jade by Lucky Captain Jess. She was bred by J and D Quarter Horses of Hico, Texas, and she's the whole package as far as rope horses go. She can score, rate, turn, run, stop and get back, Sid says, attributing her athleticism to her breeding.
“I’m an AQHA Ranching Heritage Breeder, so all of my bloodlines are the Big As I Am,” Sid said. “We’ve had great success at the NFR in tie-down roping, team roping and barrel racing. That’s what we look for, mares that will mix with that bloodline.”
The Big As I Am stud is owned by his brother who bred and raised the iconic mare.
Sid says that the key to the roping is the score. When a horse can’t score there is no amount of speed, turn or handle that will make a difference – especially against competition like Pearl.
It doesn’t matter how tough the calves are, Pearl handles them all.
“I had a little better calf in the prelims,” Sid said of his run. “The calf ran hard. That’s what I need. I need a calf that a lot of people don’t like (almost an eliminator). The harder the calf is running the harder she runs and the more I can show her.”
Even though the calf wasn’t as fast as the one he drew in the prelims, he still had a tough one which allowed him to show off again. His score in the finals was even a half-point higher.
“The calf tonight wasn’t as good. It was a little slower and went to the right. She had to switch leads and fall in behind which is more difficult.”
It is no wonder that Pearl has such a gritty, competitive personality. Her owner is no less of a go-getter.
Sid is running for Texas State Agriculture Commissioner, so took a very brief hiatus from the campaign trail to compete in Oklahoma City.
“I should be back in Texas campaigning,” Sid chuckled. “But I already qualified my horse before I decided to run. I decided to come to the World Show, especially if I have a chance to win a world championship.”
With a big grin on his face, Sid said, “I’ll campaign tomorrow, but today it’s the World Show.”
It's your moment; make it last forever! Videos of individual runs and class finals from the AQHA World Championship Show are available for purchase at www.aqha.com/mymoment. Plus, you can watch AQHA World Show video footage 24/7. This new service is optimized for Internet Explorer 10, Safari and most mobile Web browsers.