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2003/04/03

13th Futurity And Classic Cutting Memphis might be known for "seeing" things...like Elvis. With the help of Matt Gaines and LLoyd Cox, Memphis was seeing double, as one took a pair of grands and the other a pair of reserve open championships at the Memphis Futurity and Classic Cutting. The 13th time this event has been held in Memphis and at the Shelby Show Place Arena, 660 entries competed for over $561,000 in prizes. Staking his claim to a large chunk of that money was Matt Gaines from Weatherford, Texas. Matt cut to a pair of titles by taking both the 4 year old Open Championship, riding SMOOTH AS A CAT, and the 5/6 year old Open Championship, aboard LITTLE PEPTO GAL. One mistake for Gaines in each event may have yielded the same results for the Futurity and Classic, only a different name. The unique result was Lloyd Cox, Fort Morgan, Colorado, was on Gaines' heels in both Open Finals, and he too wound up with a pair of titles, only in this case Reserves. In the 4 year old open, Cox rode TR DUAL REY just 3.5 points shy of the Championship, and narrowed the gap in the 5/6 year old Open to half a point aboard STYLISH PLAY LENA. Just 2 points behind the lead in third was PLAYGUNS DESIRE, from HB and Deborah Bartlett of Pike Road, Alabama ridden by Mike Mowery. The top Mid-South finisher in the 4 year old Open was the Banawien Farm entry DUALLY LIL PEP from Little Rock, Arkansas, ridden by Ronnie Rice, finishing 21st. Although awards appeared to be doubling up, the Mid-South was not shut out. Steve Bowman, Lebanon, Tennessee kept a championship in the home state with his performance aboard INTENTIONS ARE GOOD in the $50,000 Non-Pro. Another Mid-South Champion took her trophy just over the boarder to Kosiusko, Mississippi. Mary Atwood rode her YOUNG BOOGIE MAN for 217.5 points to win the 5/6 year old Amateur Championship. The Memphis Futurity and Classic is in its 13th year, 9th consecutive, since 1988. This years competition offered 660 entries, down only one since last year, but has declined from its peak in 2000, of 739 entries.

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