2024 CRCHA Paso Robles Spring Classic Derby, Spectacular and Horse Show

2024 CRCHA Paso Robles Spring Classic Derby, Spectacular and Horse Show

The fourth edition of the California Reined Cow Horse Association’s Paso Robles Spring Classic presented by Borjon Auto Center was held at the historic Paso Robles Event Center in Paso Robles, CA on its new March 18 through 24 date and expanded 7-day schedule, swapping dates with the NRCHA Stallion Stakes which has moved to April 4 through 13. In addition to the NRCHA approved $100,000 added derby sponsored by Gotta Go Get It, Roo To Do, Triple Crown Feeds and Ultra Cruz, the event again featured an NRCHA approved $16,500 added spectacular sponsored by Brother Jackson and Wold Stallion Services and wrapped up with a full slate of NRCHA and CRCHA approved horse show classes with $8,100 added sponsored by Santa Lucia Farm.

There were 124 horses shown in the derby up 16 head from the 2023 derby, with 68 in the open, 15 in the level 1 open, 22 in the non pro and 22 in the non pro boxing. In the open the payouts were $113,500 in the open, $54,300 in the intermediate open, $18,400 in the limited open and $11,250 in the level 1 open for a total across the 4 open divisions of $197,450 up by $42,950 from the 2023 payout of $154,500. In the non pro the payouts were $24,500 in the non pro, $12,500 in the intermediate non pro and $4,100 in the limited non pro for a total across the 3 non pro divisions of $41,100 up by $8,850 from the 2023 payout of $32,250. The non pro boxing paid $11,750 up by $1,750 from its 2023 payout of $10,000. The resulting total derby payout was $250,300 up by $53,550 from the 2023 total of $196,750 2023.

The spectacular drew 93 horses up 15 from the 78 entries in 2023, with 24 in the open bridle, 20 in the non pro bridle, 6 in the youth cow horse, 9 in the youth boxing and 34 in the non pro boxing. The open payout was $22,000, the non pro payout was $9,000, the youth cow horse payout was $550, the youth boxing payout was $700 and the non pro boxing payout was $13,500 for a total spectacular payout of $45,750 up $3,900 from the $41,850 paid in 2023.

There were 275 entries in the horse show classes a big pick up from the 219 entries in 2023 and resulting in a payout of $28,250 up by $3,000 from the $25,250 paid out in 2023.

With the increased turnout across the derby, spectacular and horse show the event this year paid out $324,300 up by $60,450 from the $263,850 paid out in 2023.

Back in a new format and with new rules the ranch branding, sponsored this year by Pennebaker Performance Horses, again followed the Friday evening BBQ and derby awards presentations and featured color commentary provided by NRCHA professionals Jake Barry and Paul Bonnello. Seventeen teams of four each with at least one rider also entered in the horse show competed for a 100% cash payback of $5,100 with the first-place team also winning Preston Williams custom bits. The winning team composed of Phillip Ralls, Andy Holcomb, Danny Leslie and Ryan Pascoe took home the custom bits and $1,530 in cash. Five other teams split the remaining $3,570 in cash.

The event was live streamed with live scoring by CRCHA official videographers Jeff and Stacey Freitas and their JF Video. Show photography was provided by CRCHA Spring Classic official photographer Stacy Judd Photography. Social media coverage was provided by Megan Thorne through her Mega Equine Marketing.

In addition to all the competition, the event also offered three enjoyable hosted hospitality events for attendees. Starting off with the Central Coast Wine Competition Gold Medal Wine Tasting following the derby herd work on Monday, followed by the San Luis Obispo County Cattlemen’s Association BBQ following the derby cow work on Friday and wrapping up with the Bonnie Marie Catering Mexican Fiesta during the horse show dinner break on Saturday.

Justin Wright of Santa Maria, CA topped 67 other entries to win the $60,000 added open division on the 2020 AQHA stallion Roanmeo (Hottish x Trouble N Roan x High Brow Cat,) for owner S C Ranch Co Inc marking a 661.0 composite score (221.5 herd, 219 rein, 220.5 cow) and claiming the top $30,000 check. It was Wright’s third Spring Classic Derby open championship, and with nine horses in this year’s edition, Wright also placed third again for owner S C Ranch Co Inc, fifth and in a three way tie with himself for eleventh leaving him with a total pay day of $58,750. Close behind Wright in second place was Chris Krieg of Tulare, CA on Kristy Johnson’s homebred 2019 AQHA stallion Bet Heza Prize (Bet Hesa Cat x Lenas Gun A Smokum) with a 658.5 composite score (219.5 herd, 219.5 rein, 219.5 cow). The pair took home a check for $15,000 with Krieg picking up another $1,500 for sixteenth place.

On top of his two open placings, Krieg bested 46 other entries to win the $10,000 added intermediate open division on Johnson’s homebred gelding pocketing another $12,000 and backed that up with sixth and eighth to add another $6,200 bringing his event total to $39,700. Ricky Nicolazzi of Tucson, AZ rode Heaven Sent Ranch’s 2020 AQHA stallion Metallic Slayer (Metallic Cat x Dual A Shiner) to second with a composite of 653.5 (211.0 herd, 219.5 rein, 222.5 cow) for $10,000.

Wyatt Fisher of Nipomo, CA on Jayson and Teresa Fisher’s 2020 AQHA gelding Steve Stunning (Nics Black Diamond x CR Stylish Danny Rey) out showed 23 other entries to top the $5,000 added limited open division with a 641.5 composite score (214.0 herd, 214.0 rein, 213.5 cow) earning $6,000. Following Wyatt in second was Les Oswald on Alexandra Hart’s 2020 AQHA stallion Dontgiveahoneybadger (CR Highlight x Calie Del Rey) taking home $4,000.

Gardnerville, NV’s Clay Damuth riding Susan Stowell’s 2019 AQHA stallion Somebodys Metallic (Metallic Cat x Somebodys Spots Hot) led a field of 17 entries to claim the $3,000 added level 1 open division with a 635.0 composite (210.0 herd, 214.0 rein, 211.0 cow) and earning $3,500. Following Damuth in second was Enrico Grandi on Rogers Heaven Sent Ranch’s HSR Call Me Oorah (Call Me Mitch x CD Chic Rule) marking a 631.5 composite (211.5 herd, 209.5 rein, 210.5 cow) and picking up $2,500.

In the non pro Eric Freitas of Santa Maria, CA on his 2020 AQHA mare Scootin Lil Lola (Scooter Kat x Wareable) by his great stallion Scooter Kat dominated the field of 20 non pros and 17 intermediate non pros with a 657.0 composite (220.0 herd, 218.0 rein, 219.0 cow) to claim checks for $8,500 and $4,000 with a 23 point margin over Lester Walker of Anaheim, CA on his 2019 AQHA gelding All Hail Da Vinci (One Time Royalty x High Brow Masterpiece) scoring a 634.0 (210.0 herd, 211.0 rein, 213.0 cow) good for $5,500 and $3,000. Walker and All Hail Da Vinci also topped the limited non pro field of 14 taking home another $1,500 followed by Vanessa Lawrence of Paso Robles, CA on her 2019 AQHA mare Frozen In Light (Step To The Light x Dun It For Cash) scoring a 626.0 (208.0 herd, 211.0 rein, 207.0 cow) and earning $1,000.

Amy Etcheverry of Bakersfield, CA backed up her 2023 win again leading the field of 24 in the non pro boxing on her 2018 AQHA gelding CP Metallic Dual (Metallic Cat x KD Sweet Corn) this year with a 648.5 (215.5 herd, 216.0 rein, 217.0 cow) to take home $3,500. She was followed by Allison Trimble of Ferndale, WA on her 2019 AQHA stallion CD Metallic (Stevie Rey Von x High CD Rates) with a 644.0 (216.5 herd, 213.0 rein, 214.5 cow) to claim $2,500.

Les Oswald secured the top prize in the open bridle spectacular with a credit earning 150.0 fence run on Richard and Rena Whyler’s 2016 AQHA mare Lucky To Be Royalty (One Time Royalty x Okie Skyline) with a 437.5 composite to win $6,100.

In the non pro bridle spectacular it was Lindsey James on the 2009 AQHA gelding Maximum Spoonful (Metallic Cat x Shes A Stylish Babe x Docs Stylish Oak) owned by LMJ Enterprises LLC marking plus scores across the board for a 640.0 total to take home $2,700.

In the youth boxing spectacular Crue Dowers rode Nick Dower’s 2017 AQHA gelding Echos Dual Rey (Dual Rey x Echos Incredible Cat x Highbrow Cat) to prevail over 8 other entries with a 433 to earn $280.

Nicole Donahoo and her 2015 AQHA sorrel gelding Very Smart Pearl (Very Smart Remedy x Black Pearl) came off their big win in the 2024 World’s Greatest Youth Horseman to top the field of 6 entries and win the youth cow horse spectacular and a check for $275 with a composite score of 429.5.

Every rider earning a check in the derby took home a Gist custom trophy buckle with unique buckles awarded to the open, non pro and non pro boxing champions. The derby champions also earned quilted jackets custom embroidered by CRCHA official apparel supplier Starlight Design. The spectacular champions received Gist custom trophy buckles. Santa Cruz Animal Health provided Ultra Cruz product for the derby and horse show champions, and Nutrena provided feed for the CRCHA horse show class champions.