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Out of the Blue at the Abilene Spectacular

Out of the Blue at the Abilene Spectacular

Taylor County Coliseum in Abilene TX, 09-Jun-2014

Desires Blue Trinity and Chris Johnsrud flew under the radar to claim the Abilene Spectacular Derby on Saturday, January 8, at Taylor County Coliseum in Abilene, TX. Their 225.5-point score trumped co-reserve champions Wiley Cat, with Dirk Blakesley, and Woodys Wildest Cat, with Clint Allen, by 2 1/2 points.

The win paid $20,000 and also earned a $10,000 incentive bonus for Desire Blue Trinity’s owner/breeder Chris Cox, Lubbock, TX.

Johnsrud and Desires Blue Trinity drew up deep in the second set of the finals. They were immediately followed by NCHA Futurity champion One Time Royalty, who lost a cow and rode out before the buzzer. One Time Royalty and rider Lloyd Cox had topped the first go-round with 221 points and held the second-highest cumulative (437 points) going into the finals.

“He’s probably the best three-year-old I’ve ridden by far,” said Johnsrud at the NCHA Futurity, in December, where he showed Desires Blue Trinity as a finalist in the Open Futurity, as well as the Limited Open.

“I like everything about him, but if I had to say one thing I like the best, it would be that he has such a good way of moving. He’s cowy and strong, and he makes things look so easy.”

Cox raised his Mecom Blue-sired colt out of Desires Smart Lena, a full sister to Desires Little Rex ($287,519), and trained him until the spring of 2010, when Johnsrud took the reins.

This was the first major limited age event win for Johnsrud, 34, who got his start in cutting 14 years ago with trainer Al Dunning. In 2009, when he worked for Carol Ward, Johnsrud showed Ward’s mare Sweet Lil Gem as reserve champion of the NCHA Derby Open Limited.

Johnsrud was also a finalist aboard Tapt Dancin Cat, owned by Ray Heslin, in the 2010 NCHA Futurity Open Limited.

Including the incentive money, Desires Blue Trinity has earned $64,690 since her NCHA Futurity debut.

Co-Champions for 5/6-Year-Old Open Classic
Holly Is Smooth, ridden by Matt Miller for Tommy Manion, and Rascal Cats, with Wes Galyean for Steven Feiner, tied with 224 points in the Abilene Spectacular Classic. Each earned a payout of $14,000.

Miller also earned $11,000 for third place with 222.5 points aboard Desires Katrina for Don and Carol Dewrell. The High Brow Cat daughter is a half-sister to the dam of Abilene Spectacular Derby champion Desires Blue Trinity.

Five-year-old Holly Is Smooth, by Smooth As A Cat, was reserve champion of the 2010 Augusta Futurity under Brad Mitchell.

Rascal Cats, a 5-year-old son of High Brow Cat, has earned more than $120,000 under Galyean, and was reserve champion of the 2010 NCHA Derby.


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