Congratulations to Wembley, Alta., cutting horse competitor, Amanda Smith, who won the $25,000 Novice Non-Pro World Finals at the National Cutting Horse Association (NCHA) World Finals in Fort Worth, Texas, on her gelding, Im Short And Smooth.
The dynamic duo marked go-round scores of 218 and 219 and won $3,861 in show earnings (The World record is a score of 234 out of a possible 240). What made it even sweeter is that she almost gave up before she got there. “It hasn’t really even sunk in to be honest,” Smith said in the barns after the final round. “I’ve so many people to thank.”
She thanked her trainer, Dustin Gonnet, of Cayley, Alta., as well as California horseman Eric Wisehart, who also helped her during the year, and those who assisted her in the pen during the World Finals. Smith is grateful for the encouragement from her boyfriend, fellow cutter Darcy Geherman, who convinced her to keep hauling and go to the World Finals.
Smith got the son of Smooth As A Cat in April 2018. After having only been shown in aged events, it took a while for the quirky horse, whom Smith calls Freddie, to adjust to the lifestyle of a weekend cutting horse. “He’s very wild. Little things just set him off, and then I’ve got a lot of energy and adrenaline and that sometimes doesn’t work,” she said, laughing. “But I think I just figured out finally how to ride him, and I slowed myself down, which helped him, too.”
Smith will show Freddie in the Non-Pro at a few shows in Alberta, but she’s looking forward to being at home a bit more in 2019.