The 2021 National Reining Horse Association Futurity made history on several levels, boasting the highest number of entries, the most robust purse, and the largest Open Championship check in history
NRHA Two Million Dollar Rider Casey Deary and Ten Thirty claimed the Championship and an incredible $350,000 Championship check from draw #1 of the MS Diamonds TX Level 4 Open Finals. The pair had been solid all week, topping the first round of the competition with a 225, and marking a 216 in the second round to earn a spot in the clean-slate finals.
In the Finals, the pair put together a flawless run, marking a 223.5 and winning an incredible $350,000. “You know, that horse has so much feel and so much ability that my job is just to stay out of his way and make sure I put him in the right spot. I thought he was exceptional tonight,” noted Deary, who’s won the Open Futurity twice before. “He really came together in the finals; he just kept getting better all week.”
Ten Thirty was bred and nominated by Brooke Wharton, who consigned the colt, by NRHA Five Million Dollar Sire Gunnatrashya and out of Dainty Little Step, to the NRHA Markel Futurity Sales. “Brooke tried to hide him from me. The first time I saw him was when he walked out of the stall to go to the sale ring, and I asked her why I hadn’t seen him,” Deary joked. “My friends Dany and Fred Tremblay bought him from the sale and took him home.”
Deary gave credit to Dany Tremblay, a fellow NRHA Million Dollar Rider, for the colt’s solid foundation. “Basically, Dany did all the work on him. I bought him on the way home from the NRHA Derby as a 2-year-old. Dany had him doing all the parts already, so there really was no guesswork. I knew he was capable of doing all the stuff,” he said. “Dany has been awesome to follow and did a fantastic job on this horse.”
Ten Thirty is now owned by Rancho El Fortin of Coahuila, Mexico. “We started this with my father, and I wish he could have been here to witness this,” Aldo Ramon said. “It’s really special. I just don’t have any words to express how this feels. It’s not easy. It’s a long way to get here, and we’re really happy.”
Aldo and his brothers Marco and Claudio were present to watch this historic win, but they admitted that the first position draw was discouraging. “It didn’t feel good, but Casey was confident. He said we would have fresh ground and that we’d set the bar high, and he did,” Marco shared.
“This was amazing, spectacular, overwhelming,” Claudio added.
The brothers have set their sights on the major derbies in 2022, naming the 6666 NRHA Derby presented by Markel and the National Reining Breeders Classic as the next stops for Ten Thirty. “He’ll definitely be staying with Casey,” Marco shared.
Deary qualified three horses to the finals and finished 10th with Live N On A Prayer (In Like Flinn x Americasnextgunmodel), owned by Neiberger Performance Horses, and 11th with Gunna Be Flintastic (In Like Flinn x ARC Gunna Mark Ya), owned by Donald Dieser/Justice PH. All totaled, Deary won $403,422, plus a year’s use of a trailer from Kyle Zanetti Trailers, a Bob’s Custom Saddle, a Montana Silversmiths buckle, Anderson Bean Boots, a hat from Shorty’s Hattery, Platinum Performance, Anderson Bean boots, product from SmartPak, GlycoGuard, Brandt Blankets, Bluebonnet Feed, Dr. Joe Carter, and Classic Equine.
Tying himself for second, and unofficially becoming NRHA’s leading rider and only Seven Million Dollar Rider, was Andrea Fappani. Fappani rode Winding Inferno (Inferno Sixty Six x Wind Her Up Chic) and Mr Farenheit (Magnum Chic Dream x Wimpy Little Girl) to identical scores of 223. Winding Inferno, owned by Teton Ridge, was nominated by Giorgia Codeluppi, while Mr Farenheit, owned by the partnership of Morin and Vandorp, was nominated by Peter Morgan.
Level 3 & Level 2 Open Champion – Jesse Beckley & Trashinyurdreams
Canadian Jesse Beckley has come short of making the NRHA Futurity Level 4 Open Finals several times. “I’ve missed it numerous times by a half point, so this one got the monkey off my back,” Beckley said.
Beckley made his Finals debut count, piloting Trashinyurdreams to a 222.5 to win the Levels 2 and 3, and place fifth in the Level 4 Open, pocketing a cool $120,652 for owner Norma Siebert.
When asked about this moment, Beckley acknowledged its significance. “Oh, yeah, being in the top of the Level 4 and taking the 3 and the 2 is a dream come true for anybody,” he said.
After scoring a 220 in both the first go round and the Semi-Finals, Beckley and Trashinyurdreams became a team to watch. The crowd was already full of adrenaline, but the Jim Norick trembled as Beckley ran in for his first stop. “I mean, I knew this horse was kind of a crowd favorite because he has been so good in the go rounds. Plus, he just has that lovable look about him. I knew it was going to be loud, but nothing can prepare you for that,” he shared.
After reaching out to friends looking for the “special horse,” Beckley finally had a lead. “My good friend Adam Hendrickson works for Judy Box. I was looking for a yearling/coming two-year-old a couple years ago, and Adam phoned me and said ‘We’ve got a bunch of nice ones this year, and I think I have the one that you’re looking for,’ and it ended up being a perfect match,” Beckley explained. That colt, Trashinyurdreams, is by NRHA Five Million Dollar Sire Gunnatrashya out of This Chicsdundreamin, and was nominated by Rhodes River Ranch.
“I thank all the guys that helped me. I mean, there are so many people that I can’t even list everybody at this point. Thank you to all of them,” he said.
Dakin Allred gave Beckley a run for the money, piloting Ice Face to a 222, taking the Level 3 Reserve Championship and tying for sixth in the Level 4 for total earnings of $79,707. Ice Face, owned by Bettina Bellini Geno/Joy Ghiselli, is by SG Frozen Enterprize out of Dun Painting My Face. The colt was nominated by Ginger Schmersal.
There was a two-way tie for second in the Level 2 Open between Josh Lyons and Eduardo Salgado, who both marked a 215.5. Salgado rode Toca Lil Vintage, by Two Million Dollar Sire A Sparkling Vintage out of Lil Dreamer, owned and nominated by Renata Lemann. Salgado won $10,082.
Lyons rode I Shine At Nite, by NRHA Four Million Dollar Sire Gunners Special Nite out of Shiney Enterprise, to not only tie for the Level 2 Reserve Championship, but also finish in a tie for 10th in the Level 3, earning $19,688. I Shine At Nite, bred by McQuay Stables and nominated by Kevin Colston, is owned by Josh and his wife Jana.
Prime Time Open Champion – Dan Huss & This Joe Got A Gun
Dan Huss and This Joe Got A Gun snagged the Prime Time Open Futurity Championship title Saturday night in the Jim Norick arena, cashing in with a score of 221.5. That’s because the pair not only topped the Prime Time, they finished third in the Level 3 and tied for eighth in the Level 4 to win more than $62,440.
Huss is no stranger to success in the arena during the Futurity, riding This Joe Got A Gun to a 223 during the first round of the Open Futurity to top the Level 3. “You know, I’ve been at this for quite a few years and I wanted to step up there and show everybody that we can still do it,” Huss said.
As Huss and This Joe Got a Gun, sired by NRHA Million Dollar Sire Lil Joe Cash out of This Girls Got A Gun, stood at the Gateway of Champions before entering the Norick Coliseum, Huss chose to think of his maneuvers instead of a number to mark.
“I try to think of the steps I need to do that maneuver as good as my horse can,” Huss said. “I wanted to be aggressive on my first maneuver, and I wanted to make the judges sit up in their chairs and score me.”
Started by Max Sloan, Huss found This Joe Got a Gun on a reining horse shopping trip in Texas. Bob Sheer, a customer of Huss’s, bought him but was told to take a year off from riding by his doctors and had Huss sell the horse to Jamie Walters, another customer of Huss’ and a Non Pro rider.
“We sold him to Jamie with the idea that he is going to be her derby horse,” Huss shared. “So he is going to go on to be a non pro horse.”
While the score didn’t quite reflect what Huss had hoped to accomplish, he added he is very proud of This Joe Got a Gun and the team that got him here. When asked who he would like to thank, Huff shared, “It’s a whole team effort!”
NRHA Six Million Dollar Rider Shawn Flarida took reserve honors in the Prime Time Open and finished tied for fourth in the Level 4 to win more than $75,000 on Shiner On My Eye. The colt, by Shiners Voodoo Dr out of Flashy Lil Step, is owned by NRHA Million Dollar Owner Robert Santagata. The pair’s success in the Norick Coliseum helped Shiners Voodoo Dr become, unofficially, an NRHA Two Million Dollar Sire.
Level 1 Open Champion – Abby Kampmann & Sparklins Last Dream
The Level 1 Open Futurity Championship was decided during the first section of the Open Finals, and it was Abby Kampmann and Sparklins Last Dream, owned by Viola Scott, who emerged victorious.
The path to the championship was a bit of a rollercoaster, with a solid first round 212.5-point run, followed by a 204 in the semi-finals. The two came back strong to mark their personal best – a 214.5 – and take the title. Kampmann won $5,707 and took home awards including a saddle from Bob’s Custom Saddles, a Montana Silversmiths buckle, a hat from Shorty’s Hattery, Platinum Performance, Anderson Bean boots, product from SmartPak, GlycoGuard, Brandt Blankets, Bluebonnet Feed, Dr. Joe Carter, and Classic Equine.
“The first go we had a clean run, but I didn’t actually push her hard enough to get the credit I needed. The second go I pushed her harder, but we had some bobbles,” Kampmann shared. “For the Finals, I knew I needed to speed her up but slow myself down.”
The formula worked. “I’m still in shock. This is not something I thought would happen when we backed off the trailer. I was just hoping for the best run we could have, so I am thrilled things worked out the way they did,” she said. “This filly means so much to Viola and Jack Scott. To have her be successful means so much.”
Sparklins Last Dream is indeed special. She is by Magnum Chic Dream, the Scott’s NRHA Six Million Dollar Stallion, and out of Still Sparklin, who was a full sister to NRHA Four Million Dollar Sire Shining Spark.
“When Carol Rose had her dispersal sale, she owned Still Sparklin. She didn’t want to sell her, and she told me, ‘I’d like to give her to you,’” Scott recalled. “That mare gave us five babies – four boys, and then this little girl. She’s the last one, and that’s how she got her name. Her mother was such a nice mare, and a gift to us from Carol.”
Scott added, “Abby did such a super job with our special girl. I am so proud of them both.”
Riding Reyzed On Crush, Raphael Bourdeau took the Level 1 Reserve Championship with a 214, winning $4,326. Reyzed On Crush is by PS Mega Shine Chic out of Dual Rey Olena Play. The colt, bred by Sandy Corriveau, was nominated and is owned by Adh-Mor Ranch.