AQHYA World Championship Show 2014
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August 1-9, 2014
Oklahoma City

2012 Youth World

Heading

Sweet end to a great Ford Youth World career for Chantz Stewart

Chantz Stewart of Cave Creek, Arizona, had one goal for her final year of competition at a Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show: “My goal coming here was to be a finalist more times than I’ve ever done it before, and I successfully did that,” she said.

Chantz qualified six horses for the Ford Youth World in six different classes – cutting, reining, working cow horse, breakaway roping, heading and heeling. Most of those horses she qualified in more than one of those events. She ended up making the finals on six horses in four classes.

But she didn’t stop with just being a finalist. When the dust settled in the Jim Norick arena on her last finals run August 11, the last day of the show and the last of her Ford Youth World career, her 2012 honors included gold, silver and bronze trophies.

The gold was in heading with Im Tuf N Happy, scoring a 219.5; Jordan Allen heeled for her.

“(It’s) amazing,” Chantz told the Journal in her winning run interview. “It’s one of those events that I’ve kind of always wanted to win. It’s amazing to win it on that horse, too.

“Because he’s my mom’s; we’ve owned him six years and pretty much everyone loves ‘Peter.’ He’s a fun horse to ride, good personality, always there for you.”

Heading was Chantz’ first class of the day, and she didn’t have time to think much after the win.

“They just said, ‘Come out here, get refocused,’ handed me my heel rope and sent me back down the alley (for the heeling).”

Peter stepped up for her again, winning the heeling reserve. She finished third with Lone Star Chicolena, a gelding she also showed in the August 9 reining finals.

One class later, Chantz finished fifth on Lone Star Chicolena and ninth on Shining Cielo in the working cow horse – in 2011, she won the youth working cow horse world championship on Shining Cielo and the reserve on Lone Star Chicolena.

“It’s fun,” she added, of why she enjoys roping in particular. “There’s not much pressure to it. You just go out and do your deal; it’s the luck of the draw.”

Chantz is headed to Texas Christian University this fall to ride on the school’s National Collegiate Equestrian Association reining team.

“I move in next week, actually,” she said. “I’m looking forward to it, a new adventure. … I’m happy to have had an amazing youth career, and I’m looking forward to my future.”

In addition to actively competing, Chantz was also an AQHYA director and national secretary: “It was a great experience.”

Chantz’ family owns and operates Stewart Ranch in Cave Creek, Arizona.

“I’d like to thank my parents, Rod and Lissa stewart,” she said, “and Sam Rose – I’ve been roping with him for the last couple of weeks – and AQHA Professional Horseman Al Dunning, whom I’ve rode with for several years.”
2012 Built Ford Tough AQHYA Heading World Champions Chantz Stewart and Im Tuf N Happy

Im Tuf N Happy and Chantz Stewart of Cave Creek, Arizona, are the 2012 youth world champions in heading. (Journal photo)