Boon San Spoon and rider Jesse Lennox won the NCHA Summer Spectacular Classic/Challenge open division title after turning in a score of 225 on Friday night at Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum.
The National Cutting Horse Association victory earned the mare’s owner, Alice Walton of Millsap, the $30,584 top prize.
Lennox said Boon San Spoon thrived on her intelligence and athleticism.
“It would be a tie between how smart she is on a cow, how strong she is, how much reach and draw she has,” Lennox said. “When she travels, one stride goes a long way.”
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Bill Riddle and Cat Atat Cat finished second with a 224. The reserve championship earned the stallion’s owners, Glenn and Debbie Drake, $25,369.
Kobie Wood of Stephenville and Donas Suen Boon finished third with a 220.5. The mare’s owner, Paula Wood, earned $20,154.
When the title was at stake during the final round, Lennox and Boon San Spoon cut three cows during the 2 1/2 minutes.
“The mare was so accurate, I felt like I could work every cow as long as I needed to,” Lennox said. “She never felt out of air. She went into every stop fully committed and I just love her for that.”
Walton, who owns the Millsap-based Rocking W Ranch, said one reason Boon San Spoon excelled was because the mare is in outstanding physical condition.
“She’s such a powerful mare and so sound,” Walton said. “She’s never taken a lame step in her life.”
Lennox had a highly productive final round at the Summer Spectacular. He also finished seventh on a mare named Boon San Baby, which is also owned by Walton.
After finishing second in the final round, Riddle said Cat Atat exuded confidence throughout their run of 150 seconds.
“He’s strong,” Riddle said of Cat Atat Cat. “This horse is stout. I don’t think I’ve ever gone as fast as I went tonight and had a horse go as fast as he did and had a horse stay as soft as he was. He was so confident. It was like he didn’t think anything could go wrong. That’s really a cool feeling. You don’t have that happen all of the time.”
The Summer Spectacular Classic/Challenge featured 5- and 6-year-old horses who were second- and third-year competitors.
John Mitchell of Weatherford and the accomplished mare, Junie Wood, finished fourth after turning in a 219. The mare is owned by Slate River Ranch of Weatherford.
In April, Junie Wood won the 5- and 6-year-old title at the Super Stakes, which is the Summer Spectacular’s sister show. Junie Wood also won the Super Stakes’ 4-year-old open title in 2014.
Longtime veteran rider Lloyd Dennis Cox and Stylin Sweetie finished fifth with a 218. The mare is owned by John McClaren of McGregor.
The NCHA Summer Spectacular runs through Aug. 1. The show will conclude with the 4-year-old open division finals, which is the third jewel of the sport’s Triple Crown Series.