Fiddle And Steel must really like Will Rogers Coliseum.
The red roan stallion and Brandon Westfall returned to the scene of
their biggest triumph to win the National Cutting Horse Association
(NCHA) Super Stakes 4-Year-Old Non-Pro. The winning 225.5-point run on
Friday, April 16, in Fort Worth came just four months after they won the NCHA Futurity Non-Pro title in December 2020 with a crowd-rousing 227.
“We had a really deep draw in the finals but there were a few cows we really liked,” said Westfall, of Granbury, Texas. “The first cow started good so we built from there. ‘Fiddle’ felt good, really dialed in.”
The red roan stallion by Equi-Stat Elite $41 Million Sire Metallic Cat was
bred, raised and trained by Westfall’s parents, Russ and Janet. The
family also bred and showed “Fiddle’s” dam, Lil Bit Reckless, a daughter
of CD Royal who has an Equi-Stat record of $230,923 in
the cutting pen, and as a broodmare has foaled the earners of nearly
$300,000. With more than $126,893 in earnings, Fiddle And Steel is her
“It’s really neat. I showed the mare when she was older, and I was
little. My parents did well on her and she’s gone on to be a good
broodmare,” Westfall said.
“Fiddle is as smart as his mom and has been a little easier to train.
She was a pretty good size, but he is so strong and so athletic that
it’s easy for him. Sometimes, it can feel like we’re in a bind. I’ll
think I over-sent him right there and that he is fixin’ to miss this
cow, but he’s like ‘I got it.’
“He won’t miss it.’”
estfall plans on attending the Breeders Invitational in May and plans
to stay home until the NCHA Summer Spectacular in July. The 20-year-old
rider gave a shout out to his turnback help during the show, which
included his dad, Clint Allen, Boyd Rice, Morgan Cromer, Casey Green and
“Winning this has dang sure one of the accomplishments I hadn’t won
yet so it feels good to win that too,” he said. “I also want to thank my
parents first and foremost and my friends for always having my back.”
The show career of Hazardouz Material has been one of near-misses,
but on Saturday, April 3, the stallion put it all together for trainer
Erin Taormino in the National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA)
The son of Equi-Stat Elite $40 Million Sire Metallic Cat
won the Open and a $43,786 first place paycheck while taking down the
biggest event of his life. He and Taormino scored a 218.5 in the herd,
224 in the rein work and 224 down the fence for a 666.5 composite,
edging out Reserve Champions Saddling At Sunrise (WR This Cats Smart x Sunshine Ingredient x Mr Sun O Lena)
“He couldn’t have been more on-point last night, I was so proud of him,” Taormino said.
Bred by Taylor Carbo, the 5-year-old stallion owned by Linda Mars now has lifetime earnings of more than $92,000.
“I’ve always known the talent was there but we [haven’t gotten it
done.] At the [NRCHA Snaffle Bit] Futurity, the judges got him for a
break of gait in the reining,” Taormino said. “The [NRCHA] Derby last
year, he tripped down the fence. So, we’ve had a little bit of hard luck
along the way.
“Every show I’ve gotten more confidence on him and he’s one that I know, if I just let him do it, he’s going to do his job.”
“Skeeter’s a really easy, good horse to be around. Westley rides with
me on him and he’s just a good guy. Good minded, gentle and very
serious all the time,” Taormino said. “He has never ever let me down. He
is always trying, he’s always been a really great horse.”
Not one to let Skeeter have the spotlight, Taormino’s 3-year-old son
Westley became the adorable center of attention during Saturday night’s
awards ceremony as he hustled across the sandy arena to sit in front of
Taormino in the saddle. He grappled for the microphone with his mother
was interviewed about her victory by Russell Dilday.
“It’s a big honor to be able to compete and show against the quality
of horses and riders that are out there. It’s no easy feat for anybody,”
Taormino added humbly.
The first horse and rider duo to earn a 2021 NRCHA Stallion Stakes champion trophy were Im So Stunning (Metallic Cat
x Absolutely Stunning x Smart Little Lena) and Erin Taormino in the
Open Two-Rein Spectacular. With a 662 composite (221 herd/218 rein/223
cow), the 2015 roan gelding and Erin Taormino topped the 33-horse Open
Two-Rein Spectacular field by a point and a half.
Taormino has trained the roan since late in his 2-year-old year.
Prior to this win, the horse had earned $28,466 in reined cow horse
“We’ve made finals and he’s never won anything big but has been a
steady horse,” Taormino said. “We gelded him this winter and he really
loves the gelding life.”
When she learned of the win, Taormino was all smiles.
“He’s a really fun horse to train,” she said. “The two rein class,
the competition in it is incredible. The horses are amazing and the
riders are amazing. To win [this class] in such a fabulous group is just
Owner Jennifer Ostenson earned $5,520 for the win.
The Open Two-Rein Spectacular wasn’t the only thing Taormino and Im
So Stunning won in Vegas. In the Open Two-Rein horse show class, held
concurrently with the Open Two-Rein Spectacular, the duo were second
which earned another check for $2,144.
In addition to the purse, the champion received a C.R. Morrison NRCHA
trophy, a one-ear headstall with rawhide and silver buckles from Dennis
Moreland Tack, a Platinum Performance gift certificate, and an
UltraCruz prize pack from Santa Cruz Animal Health. For Reserve in the
Open Two-Rein horse show class, they won a pair of Classic Fit Boots
from the NRCHA.
Reserve Champion Clayton Edsall and Stylish In Socks (Metallic Cat x Stylish In Stockings x Peptoboonsmal),
owned by Beverly Servi, scored a composite 660.5 (223 herd/215
rein/222.5 cow). They won $4,320 and prizes that include an UltraCruz
prize pack, a saltwater spa session from Oklahoma Equine Hospital and a
pair of DyNo Turn Fleece Bell Boots from NRCHA.
The top two finishers in the Open Two-Rein Spectacular both hail from prestigious female families.
The second dam of Stylish In Socks is the late Stylish And Foxie, a
great cutting mare who as of her death earlier this year had foaled the
winners of more than $850,000. Stylish And Foxie’s daughters had foaled
the winners of more than $1.5 million.
Im So Stunning’s second dam is the illustrious Autumn Boon, who
foaled the earners of more than $1.9 million. Autumn Boon also is the
mother of Equi-Stat Elite $6 Million Sire Im Countin Checks, Equi-Stat Elite $3 Million Sire Once In A Blu Boon and Equi-Stat Elite
$1 Million Sire Boon A Little. Her produce record also includes the
stallion Wild Thing DNA, who has sired the winners of more than
$621,000, and young sire A Tale Of The Cat.
The 2020 National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Futurity was a smashing success for Metallic Cat, who topped the NCHA Futurity Sires list with offspring earnings of more than $1 million.
The success put the stallion’s lifetime Equi-Stat record at just shy of $40 million as of Dec. 28. His son, Meteles Cat, also made the top 15 of the 2020 NCHA Futurity Sires in only his second futurity-age foal crop.
Overall, this year’s NCHA Futurity Sire list is a mix of old and new.
There’s industry legends such as High Brow Cat and Dual Rey, but freshman sires Smooth Talkin Style and Reyzin The Cash both had bang-up years to make the top 5 with their very first futurity-age foals.
This year’s group of top stallions also represents several sire lines, with sons or grandsons of High Brow Cat, Dual Rey, Spots Hot, Peptoboonsmal, Nitas Wood and Grays Starlight.
A money-winning gelding by Metallic Cat broke a sale company’s previous records when he topped the annual Diamonds in the Desert Premier Horse Sale in Fort Worth, Texas.
The horse, Jack B Metallic, sold for $260,000 at the sale held Dec. 5
at Billy Bob’s Texas in the Fort Worth Stockyards. Typically held in
Las Vegas, the sale moved to Fort Worth this year as a result of the
relocation of the National Finals Rodeo to the Lone Star State.
Though sale organizers never for sure which horse will end up being
the sales topper, they said there clearly was a lot of interest in Jack B
Metallic going into the sale. He ended up being the sale company’s
highest-selling horse ever.
Codi Gines, co-owner of sale manager MM Auction Services, said Jack B
Metallic’s status as a broke, gentle gelding trained in cutting and
roping made the Turner Performance Horses consignee stand out as a
“Everything he had to offer was awesome, so we knew that he could be
one of the high sellers,” she said. “But you just can never pick.”
Officials with the sale do not release buyer names, but Gines said
Jack B Metallic went to a home in Clark, Colorado. Second-high seller
Shine Stylin Shine was bought by someone from Texas, she said.
Diamonds in The Desert High Sellers
Consigned by Turner Performance Horses, the $260,000 sales topper Jack B Metallic was a winning cutter with a lifetime Equi-Stat record
of $5,459. He competed in the Western United States and the Pacific
Northwest for owner Paje Turner, winning money at Rocking K Productions
events, the Utah Cutting Horse Association Futurity show as well as
other limited-age events and weekend shows.
His dam, Charlotte Rey, is a daughter of the late Dual Rey who has produced two money earners in Equi-Stat: Jack B Metallic and his full sister, Reychel Cat ($14,831).
Jack B Metallic was bred by Mark and Anne Marie Pearson, of Spearman, Texas.
Brandon Westfall has done just about everything but win the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Futurity Non-Pro outright.
He was second two years ago. Last year, he rode I Reckon So to the co-championship when he shared the win with Kristen Galyean and Coureygous.
He’d felt good about his chances this year with Fiddle And Steel, a handsome red roan Metallic Cat stallion bred and owned by his parents, Russ and Janet Westfall. However, he cut a cow in the finals so tough that he started to have doubts.
“It was a lot,” he said after the finals on Friday, Dec. 11. “Every turn, I thought it was gonna be its last.”
Fiddle And Steel hung, tough, though, and refused to let the cow get away from him. They finished the run with style, and were rewarded by the judges with a huge 227. The crowd went wild.
Westfall was grateful to his herd help, which included his dad, as well as to the horse.
“He makes it pretty easy. Any time you feel like you’re in a bind, or
the few times I showed him this week I felt like, oh boy, this is a
little hairy, here. He’s like, ‘Oh, no. I got it.
“He’s pretty awesome.”
Their 227 took the lead from the eventual Reserve Champions,
Nitreyious and Reyly Plendl, who marked a 222 in the first of the
A gelding by Metallic Cat, Nitreyious is out of the mare Cherrey (by Dual Rey). Bred by Rodney Wrinkle Cutting Horses, he is co-owned by Reyly and her twin sister and fellow cutter, Regan Plendl.
Fiddle And Steel
Fiddle And Steel is one of five money earners our of the mare Lil Bit
Wreckless, a daughter of CD Royal who now has produced winners of more
than $240,000. Thanks to his $74,605 first-place paycheck from the NCHA
Futurity Non-Pro, Fiddle And Steel is his mother’s leading earner.
Before Fiddle And Steel, the mare’s earners were split between the sires Metallic Cat — Gettin Dark ($56,201) and Reckelle ($19,5900) and Kit Kat Sugar — Ringo ($60,794) and Sugarlesss ($30,463).
Like Fiddle And Steel, all four of the mare’s other winners were bred by Westfall’s parents, Russ and Janet.
Leading Western performance horse sire Metallic Cat filmed his long-awaited appearance in the hit series Yellowstone during a film shoot at the National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) Snaffle Bit Futurity®.
Cast and crew from the series, which airs on the Paramount Network,
were at the show in Fort Worth on Wednesday, Oct. 21, shooting for an
upcoming season of the show.
Metallic Cat’s shoot was in the John Justin Arena, which that
afternoon played host to the Open Hackamore and Open Bridle finals.
Crews set up along the concourse to film the stallion, as well as action
on the arena floor from some of the day’s classes.
Metallic Cat was led into the arena; he did not compete in Wednesday’s show.
The 15-year-old Quarter Horse stallion was relaxed as he observed the action at the Will Rogers Memorial Center. Unfazed by the film crew or crowd, he calmly took in the scene and greeted admirers.
The Yellowstone crew filmed throughout the day. One of the stallion’s sons, Jittery, won the Open Hackamore finals.
Metallic Cat’s owner, Bobby Patton, purchased the right for the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Futurity Open Champion to be on the show at a charity auction during last year’s NCHA Futurity.
Money from the $165,000 bid benefitted the NCHA Charities Foundation.
Yellowstone co-creator and producer Taylor Sheridan donated the right
to have a stallion written into script of the series.
As of the day of the film shoot, Metallic Cat has sired the winners of more than $37 million. More than $3.4 million of that was earned in reined cow horse competition.
The stallion is also the title sponsor of this year’s NRCHA Snaffle Bit Futurity, presented by Metallic Cat.
SJR Metallic Beau and Ron Emmons didn’t let a myriad of circumstances
deter them from clinching the Sherri Gilkerson Memorial Open Bridle
Championship at the Reno Snaffle Bit Futurity.
Emmons, a National Reined Cow Horse Association (NRCHA) Hall of Fame Member and Equi-Stat Elite
$1 Million Rider, decided to show SJR Metallic Beau straight up in the
bridle for the first time at the Reno Snaffle Bit Futurity. According to
Emmons, the added money at the show made the Open Bridle class
On Sept. 17, the pairs’ careful planning and tenacious performance
made the chance worth it. Their composite of 439.5 (217 rein/222.5 cow)
brought home a $5,340 payday.
Emmons recalled his winning fence run, saying he remembered the cow from the Non-Pro Futurity Herd Work.
“I knew it was a little soft so I just hit it a few times at the end,
got its attention and took is down the fence. And it had a lot more run
than other cows,” Emmons said.
SJR Metallic Beau
SJR Metallic Beau, sired by Equi-Stat Elite $36 Million Sire Metallic Cat, is out of Shining Juliet (by Shining Spark). The 2014 stallion was bred by the San Juan Ranch of Weatherford, Texas.
According to Emmons, SJR Metallic Beau was started as a 2-year-old and was largely unridden throughout his 3-year-old year. Emmons has patiently worked with him and done a lot of “homework” to catch him up. Emmons graciously thanked the owner Jill Pierre of Red Bluff, California, for trusting the training process.
The Patton family has been heavily involved with cutting since
businessman Bobby Patton jumped into the business with a splash five
years ago. But, for all that involvement – including buying leading sire
Metallic Cat — no one from the family had ever ridden to the herd in a
And, what started as fun father-daughter time in the practice pen
during the coronavirus pandemic quickly turned into a show pen debut
and, in the case of Rachel Patton, the winner’s circle at the National
Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) Metallic Cat Summer Spectacular.
Though the 19-year-old was thrilled to win the 4-Year-Old Limited
Amateur title, she said the “coolest part” was seeing her dad also
saddle up at the show in Fort Worth, Texas.
Because, as passionate as the Fort Worth businessman is about cutting
since he entered the sport five years ago, he hadn’t shown a cutting
horse himself until he made the jump from practicing with his daughter
to the bright lights of the Will Rogers Coliseum.
“We were just kind of looking for something to do [and] this was fun,” Rachel explained. “And, my dad is definitely so into the cutting. His whole heart is into it. He’s into the industry more than anything I’ve seen him be in in a while.”
Although the Pattons hadn’t competed in cutting until this year’s
Summer Spectacular, the family has been extremely active in the sport
since entering the cutting horse breeding business in late 2015, when
Bobby bought 11 horses at the dispersal of Walton’s Rocking W Ranch —
purchases that included the High Brow Cat stallion Boon San and his
$244,049-winning daughter Boon San Baby (out of Stylish Baby Doll x SR
Acquisitions from the sale were sent to Rocking P Ranch, his newly
purchased facility that was formerly Jon and Abby Winkelried’s Marvine
In 2017, the family got even more involved in cutting when Bobby bought Metallic Cat from longtime owner Fults Ranch Ltd. for an undisclosed sum. At the time, the NCHA Futurity Open Champion was an Equi-Stat Elite
$14 Million Sire. The stallion more than doubled his progeny earnings
in less than three years after the purchase — recently hitting the $35
Rocking P Ranch of Aledo, Texas, now offers stallion services for Metallic Cat, as well as Equi-Stat Elite
$6 Million Sire Spots Hot (Chula Dual x Sweet Shorty Lena x Shorty
Lena). It held its first production sale during this year’s Summer
Rachel said the main obstacle keeping the family from the cutting
show pen had always been a lack of time. Her dad had a busy schedule and
she was occupied by school, first high school and then studying
government at the University of Texas in Austin.
When the coronavirus hit and restrictions were put into place for
travel, schools and large gatherings, Rachel said that opened the door
to the cutting pen.
“We were looking for things to do, and my dad’s like, ‘We have all
these amazing horses waiting to be ridden, waiting for you to ride. This
is the perfect opportunity to learn cutting,’” she said.
They went to the family’s ranch in Aledo and started riding with
resident trainer Jesse Lennox. The high-energy professional had her on
cows right away, Rachel said, quickly becoming her “personal hype man.”
He suggested showing at the Summer Spectacular, which was sponsored
by Metallic Cat. Rachel, who rode barrel horses growing up on the
family’s South Texas ranch but didn’t know much about the rules of
cutting, said she was hesitant to jump into an NCHA Triple Crown event
on her first start.
So, she showed once at a weekend show. Then, she went to the Summer Spectacular.
Both Pattons proved to be a quick study. In addition to winning the
4-Year-Old Limited Amateur with Cinca Metallic, a daughter of Metallic
Cat from the same maternal line as the family’s Breeder’s Invitational
winner Cinca Im Hot, Rachel made the 5/6-Year-Old Limited Amateur finals
on two more Metallic Cat progeny — Metallic Curveball and Summer
Rachel thought her best shot was with the older, more seasoned 5- and
6-year-old horses. Just happy to be in the finals, she thought her
chances at a win were most likely over after finishing 13th in the
5/6-Year-Old Limited Amateur finals with Summer Shandy (out of Pippis
Longstocking x Dual Smart Rey) and 15th with Metallic Curveball (out of
Cinca de Maya x Dual Rey).
However, there was still Cinca Metallic — Metallic Curveball’s
younger sister — in the 4-Year-Old Limited Amateur. Things hadn’t gone
well with the horse the last time Rachel rode her, so she tempered her
expectations. Plus, going in, she said people had prepared her that she
probably wouldn’t make the finals with a less experienced 4-year-old.
She figured she’d just focus on having fun.
“I was like, why not? Let’s just keep riding for more practice,” she
said. “And, then I ended up going to the finals for the Limited Amateur
and winning it.”
Her father rode a 5-year-old gelding named One Suspicious Mind in the
5/6-Year-Old Limited Amateur. They marked a 180 and didn’t advance to
the next round, but Rachel was impressed with how well her father did in
his first foray into the cutting pen.
She said he’d originally entered after hearing talk spectators might
be banned from the show due to COVID-19-related restrictions, reasoning
that if he was a competitor he’d be able to be there regardless of any
When the spectator ban didn’t materialize, she expected him to withdraw — but he competed anyway.
“He went out there and rocked it. So, that was the coolest thing
ever,” she said. “I was probably more nervous for his run than I was for
any of mine.”
Though Bobby didn’t make the finals, Rachel said her dad now has the
cutting bug and can’t wait to get back into the herd. In fact, she said
that might include an appearance at this year’s NCHA Futurity.
“We have five awesome 3-year-olds at the barn right now, and Jesse
[Lennox] will ride the top two. I’ll ride three and four, and my dad’s
looking at riding five,” she said. “So, that’s all pretty exciting.”
It’s safe to say the sport won two converts at the Summer
Spectacular. And, Rachel said, her experience shows how welcoming the
sport is for newcomers — and it dispelled some worries she’d had about
not knowing enough, or not having the skills to be able to find a place
in the sport.
“If they’re thinking about it, if they’re on the fence, just do it
and see what happens,” she said. “Because, good things can come out.”