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Louisville First Saturday PM

The clouds parted after a long day of intermittent rain, as the World’s Championship Horse Show’s second first Saturday kicked off tonight. The ASR Kentucky Weanling Futurity continues to hold its place atop the schedule, with a nice group of 17 showing for a whole bunch of prize money. Scoring a payday of $7,422, MBA’s Stole The Show was the top call in this one. Brittany Baird Wagner threw both arms into the air when her family’s entry was called out as the winner, though she was standing with a different one of their entries. It was the longtime MBA Equestrians colt man, Antonio Hernandez, making the lead tonight with Todd Valentine as his tailer. This is always the MBA “A Team,” and they made it work well tonight for a winning performance. This is a second generation product of the MBA program, as Stole The Show is by MBA’s Manhattan’s Shooting Star, their son of I’m A New Yorker and one of their foundation mares, CH Cary’s Moonraker. Stole The Show’s dam is a good one too, as the chestnut colt is out of Reserve World’s Champion Callaway’s Rosemary And Thyme. This is also the dam of MBA’s Just About Thyme, a full brother to Stole The Show that was a Reserve World’s Champion in hand here. A huge colt, EAC First & Finest was the Reserve World’s Champion with Gerhardt Roos on the lead for EAC Equine LLC. Sired by a Reserve World’s Champion, First & Finest is by Arrowhead’s Unlike Any Other. This one is just a four-year-old stallion. He is by a huge producer of quality from the last few years, Wine Women And Song, and out of another good producer, Miss Moriarty. Hillcroft Globetrotting Duchess is the bottom line on this one, a daughter of Harlem Globetrotter. Always a crowd favorite in this one, Smith Lilly was up for third with Walterway’s Enchanted Evening for Larry Hartsock. Say Amen and Walden Bullard were fourth for longtime breeder, A.E. Nelson. 

Most of the time, a Louisville debut for a team comes after a long path of hard work to become a duo. And then other times, it just clicks right away. Tonight was more of the latter, as Helen Rich sat behind Heartland Copper Illusion for the very first time and came away with the Kentucky County Fair Harness Pony Championship. Owned until recently by Toni Nastali, Copper Illusion was sold within the Majestic Oaks barn to Helen. It was a great selection, as the product of Heartland Head Of The Class and Heartland Dixie had Helen all smiles in this one. Mary Gaylord McClean and Go Daddy were up for the reserve championship for the Golden Creek Farms. By Twin Willow’s McMillan and out of the Vindicator mare, Juliana, Go Daddy is all sorts of curved up with plenty of flash. He was the Harness Pony Champion at both Midwest Charity and Lexington.

The Kentucky Riders Equitation class gets a spot on this first Saturday night, offering a first ride on the week in formal wear. Nine riders competed for this title, with Zubrod Stables winning it for the sixth year in a row. Kaeley Arterburn took over the reins for five time winner Maisie Benfield, keeping the streak alive for instructor Cindy Boel. Kaeley was last year’s Pleasure Equitation Triple Crown winner and this year’s Senior Equitation Reserve Champion at Lexington. Alayna Applegate and Rob New York were the reserve winners for trainer Shelley Fisher. The Junior Equitation Champion at Lexington, Alayna was last year’s UPHA Junior Challenge Cup National Champion. She is just an 11-year-old rider this year! Rose Marie Wheeler was up for third, with Madelyn Gill in third. 

The Kentucky County Fair Fine Harness Championship went to Battlefield and Peter Palmer. Always a contender, the son of Undulata’s Nutcracker and Battersea makes it look easy. He trotted well over level and basically in place as he waited to be called out as the winner for Carl T. Fischer Jr. Peter was the winner of this class a year ago as well with Samuri Lady. Darrell Case made a good check adjustment as the reverse was called and put together a great second way with Slice Of Heaven. A product of Nancy Leigh Fisher’s stallion and mare, Slice Of Heaven is by Undulata’s Nutcracker and out of Heavenly Thunder. This couldn’t be much more of a Willowbank product, as the grand walk-trot mare, Heavenly Thunder, is by Attache’s Thunderbolt. Jimmy Robertson and True Fortune got a nice hand in third for Frank and Iris James, while Best Show In Vegas and Annika Bruggeworth finished fourth. 

The walk-trots were up next, with Carolina’s Inside Story winning the Kentucky County Fair Three-Gaited Championship in unanimous style. Johanna Kapioltas won this class for the second year in a row, as last year she took the winning trip aboard Worthy Sir. This one is owned by Johanna’s Cirrus Stables. Sired by Promise Keeper, Inside Story is out of D.S. Sweet Summer Sunshine. By Sir Silver Knight and out of Dear Nitey, Roselane’s Nite Show was the reserve champion with Leanne Asper up for Leanne and Diane Asper. Gerhardt Roos trains this one. He rode to the Limit Three-Gaited win at Rock Creek this year. Gerhardt himself was up for third with Wii for Wildstone Farm and Barb Christensen. Ethan Roetman and Dice O Mighty finished fourth for Patricia Misko. 

Dun-Haven Regal Attraction sired the top two in the Kentucky County Fair Road Pony Championship, with Regal’s Prime Rate LF taking the top call with Maureen Campbell at the lines. Helen Rich’s good night continued with a second County Fair Championship, as she is the owner of the Regal Attraction and Conqueror’s Ladybird LF offspring. A winner here a year ago in the amateur division and the reigning Amateur Road Pony National Champion, Prime Rate hasn’t finished lower than second in over a year. Regal’s Lightning Strike LF was up for the reserve honors with Mary Gaylord McClean driving for Golden Creek Farms. The Amateur Road Pony Champion the past two years at Rock Creek, Lightning Strike was the Open Road Pony 50-52” World’s Champion here in 2014. Game and Allie Wellington Nunley were up next for Majestic Oaks in third, while Heartland Flurry and Jerry Cummins capped off the top four.

With 14 entries in the ASR Kentucky Yearling Futurity, the winner was the unanimous choice of the judges, as Petrichor took the top spot for WoodLeigh Farm. Darrell Case and Roman Marcos teamed up once again tonight for a good result. A full brother to Slice Of Heaven, a reserve winner earlier on the night, Petrichor is by Undulata’s Nutcracker and out of Heavenly Thunder. Petrichor is a word of Greek origin. It is the earthy scent that is produced when fresh rain fails on dry soil. Gerhardt Roos scored another nice prize on the night, taking the reserve world’s championship with Caramel Popcorn. Gerhardt might be the hardest working man on the grounds tonight, as his schedule has been wall to wall, with multiple entries in multiple classes throughout the program. Caramel Popcorn is by I’m First and out of Fox Grape’s Caramel Cream, a daughter of Dorian Wild Temper (SA). Smith Lilly was up for third with another good one by Nutcracker, Walterway’s Crack Me Up, for Larry Hartsock. Pam Specht and her Supremacy’s High Time were teamed up once again to produce a nice one. This was Supremacy’s Wise Guy finishing fourth in a good group. 

This first Saturday night continues on the traditional Stake Night lineup of Roadster to Bike, Hackney Pony, and Five-Gaited Stake as the final three events of the night. While Stake Night itself has gone to a different order of go, tonight’s program ran just that way, with Judy McNeish taking the Kentucky County Fair Roadster to Bike Championship behind Nothing Else Matters. Judy was smiling a mile wide as Mark Turner hung the carnations over her horse’s shoulders. A winner here every single year he’s shown, Nothing Else Matters was the Ladies Roadster to Bike World’s Champion last year. Cookie Monster and Mitchell Devore took the reserve tricolor in his first time ever driving on the green shavings. In fact, it’s Mitchell’s first year showing at all! The Devore Stables crew got it in high gear, cheering loud and proud for their man. Mitchell drove to wins at May Classic, ARHPA, and Harrodsburg earlier this year. Jimmy Robertson and Hot Lips were up for third, keeping both wheels on this year after last year’s tire blowout. They left the blowouts to one of their competitors this year. Hopefully the tradition does not continue next year. 

The Golden Creek team had the winner in the Kentucky County Fair Hackney Pony Championship, with Senator taking the final turn of the track with Tom Lowry at the lines. Reserve in this class a year ago, Senator was the Hackney Pony Champion at Lexington this year. He is by LLF Top Of The Mark and out of Heartland Country Music. Last year’s UPHA Hackney Pony Classic National Champion, Heartland Infinity was the reserve champion with a grand lady, Sandra Surber. Infinity is trained by Majestic Oaks. Four times a winner here, Infinity is by Heartland Rain And Fire and out of Heartland Laureate. 

Royally bred, Mark Of Perfection got his time in the Louisville winner’s circle tonight, wearing the yellow carnations with Clark Clouse as the Kentucky County Fair Five-Gaited Champion for Harold Denton Jr. By Callaway’s Blue Norther and out of CH The Homecoming Queen, Mark Of Perfection followed in his World’s Champion parents hoofprints down Louisville’s victory lane. John Warner made a great ride aboard With Distinction, scoring the reserve tricolor for Stanley Jozwiak. This one is by Callaway’s Guy Park and out of a Will Shriver mare, Callaway’s Smell The Roses. This team has already made five victory passes on the season. Chad Graham’s gold star ride landed him a good third with Don’t Ask Me for Pleasantview Farm. 

After that, the rush was on to get all of tomorrow’s juvenile horses into the ring for the first time, as the grounds crew has worked all through the night and day to get the ring up and ready for showtime tonight. Last night, it was puppet comedian Jeff Dunham entertaining the fairgoers, with Reba putting on a show on Thursday, opening night of the Kentucky State Fair!

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