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Natall Melo Wins 2009 NRCHA Derby Amateur Championship on Colonel Doc Tucker

Preliminary competition at the 2009 National Reined Cow Horse Association Derby determined which Open and Non Pro entries would advance to the clean-slate finals on Sunday, June 21. And while those lucky exhibitors celebrated the chance to compete for a title, another Championship was already decided. The Amateur Derby awards were presented after the cow work preliminaries on Friday, June 19.

It was an emotional win for Natall Melo, who rode his horse to a 214 in the cow work, claiming an elusive NRCHA Premier Event Championship! "I am just thrilled. This is a great little horse. We had a great cow, and I couldn't have asked my horse to work better," he noted.

Melo topped the Amateur division with a 624 composite on Colonel Doc Tucker, by Master Jay and out of Genuine Emma Tucker, pocketing a cool $2,595. He has owned Colonel Doc Tucker since the horse was a baby. With help from his trainer Brad Buttrey and Brad's wife, Sis, along with the support of his wife, Jody, Natall and the 5-year-old have placed second or third at almost every event they have entered. "It's great to finally be first!" he admitted. "I can't thank Brad, Sis, or Jody enough for all their help."

Irene Harris earned the Amateur Reserve Championship on Little Whiskey Girl, by Hickorys Indian Pep and out of Miss Sexy Chex with a 619 composite. The Reserve title came with a check for $2,076. The NRCHA Derby, which began on June 16 and runs through June 21, is held at the Paso Robles Event Center in Paso Robles, California.

The National Reined Cow Horse Association, celebrating its 60th Anniversary in 2009, is the governing body of cow horse competition, responsible for promoting the sport, insuring high standards of competition and educating members and the public about the history and tradition of the cow horse.

Through the support of a Corporate Partner family that includes John Deere, Adequan(r), Bob's Custom Saddles, Cinch, Inc., Classic Equine, Gist Silversmiths, MD Barns, Platinum Performance, Inc., Nutrena, Quarter Horse News & Performance Horse magazine, Fort Dodge West Nile Innovator, Rios of Mercedes, Merial products ULCERGARD and EQUIOXX, Markel Insurance Co., and the Silver Legacy Hotel, the association works to keep the vaquero tradition alive in today's equine industry.

The support of the NRCHA Corporate Partners is supplemented by sponsorship from NRCHA Breeders Sponsors, which includes Carol Rose Ranch, Burnett Ranches Ltd., Fairlea Ranch, George & Sue Hearst/Estrella Ranch, Jackson Land & Cattle, LLC, Oasis Ranch, Outback Stallion Station, Polo Ranch, Roeser Ranch, Ward River Ranch, and most recently Holy Cow Performance Horses, LLC. For information on the National Reined Cow Horse Association, call 580-759-4949 or visit the NRCHA Official Web Site at http://www.nrcha.com <http://www.nrcha.com/> .


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