Record Win for Phil Rapp
NCHA Hall of Fame Rider Phil Rapp, cutting’s all-time leading money earner, with more than $8.8 million, won the 2017 Houston NCHA Mercuria World Series Open Finals on Saturday, March 4, with 227 points on Dont Stopp Believin, by Dual Rey.
It was Rapp’s tenth win in a Mercuria Finals, a record number for the series. In addition, Dont Stopp Believin LTE $224,933 is out of Dont Look Twice, who won the Mercuria Finals eight times, a record number for an individual horse.
Dont Stopp Believin is the first Mercuria NCHA World Series of Cutting winner out of a Mercuria winner.
Six-year-old Don’t Stopp Believin is owned by Phil and Mary Ann Rapp, who bred Dont Look Twice LTE $824,546, cutting’s all-time leading mare, 2011 NCHA Open Horse of the Year, and 2012 NCHA Open World Champion. Phil won 26 major events aboard Don’t Look Twice, who represents three generations of breeding from Tapeppyoka Peppy, one of Phil’s first cutting horses.
Tapt Twice LTE $279,457, dam of Don’t Look Twice, is the producer of earners of $1.3 million, and Tap O Lena LTE $450,639, dam of Tapt Twice, won 15 major events with Phil, as well as the 1997 NCHA Non-Pro World Finals for Mary Ann.
Rapp also placed third with 223 points in the Houston NCHA Mercuria Open Finals riding 2013 NCHA Non-Pro Horse of the Year Reyzin LTE $407,602. The 8-year-old High Brow CD daughter was also bred by Phil and Mary Ann, who showed her, respectively, in open and non-pro limited age events. Reyzin is now owned by Gale Force Quarter Horses, Conway, S.C.
Suen You Will See LTE $146,570, shown by Steve Oehlhof, scored 224 points to claim the reserve championship of the Houston NCHA Mercuria Open Finals. Owned by Ken Sitton, Freeport, Tex., the 6-year-old daughter of Boon Too Suen, also scored 224 points to qualify for the finals with the winning go-round score.
Houston NCHA Mercuria Non-Pro Finals
Lauren Middleton, Weatherford, Tex., scored 224 points on Sweet Revenge LTE $105,458 to win the Houston NCHA Mercuria Non-Pro Finals and her third Mercuria championship title. Middleton, an NCHA Non-Pro Hall of Fame honoree, previously won the 2010 and 2011 Quarter Horse Congress NCHA Mercuria Finals, is an eight-time champion at the NCHA Eastern National Championships, and has lifetime earnings of $583,458.
Sweet Reyvenge is a 9-year-old gelded son of Reys Dual Badger and half-brother to Felix The Cat LTE $109,893.
April Widman, Weatherford, Tex., secured the Non-Pro reserve championship with 222 points on Woodys Baby LTE $261,004. Widman was 2016 NCHA Non-Pro Reserve World Champion aboard Woodys Baby, an 8-year-old gelding sired by Nitas Wood, and has $455,884 in lifetime earnings.
Kelsey Conn, Hempstead, Tex., scored 219.5 points to place third in the Mercuria Finals on 10-year-old Boon Tooth LTE $169,782. Conn won this event in 2010 riding WSR Lano Badger Cat, but she and Boon Tooth, by Mr Boonsmal To You, have teamed up in 13 previous Mercuria World Series finals. Conn has lifetime earnings of $487,367.