Get Western

Get Western

Apr 27, 2023

by Keri Whitney

Shank and Stacy Stephens had just lost their stallion in 2016. A friend called them not long after to tell them he had a stallion they'd probably want to own, they declined. A month later, the friend showed up unannounced and dropped the 15 hand, bay stallion, Gunagetwestern off.

Riata Buckle stallion, Gunagetwestern ("Western") came off the Patterson Ranch in west Texas. They ranched on him, branded, and showed him in working cow horse classes. The Muleshoe Ranch bred mares to him. Western is a money earner on the head and heel side. Most recently was at the BFI where Shank and Shane Boston teamed up in the 11.5 Businessman roping. He's taken Shank to the pay window many times; including at the 2018 WSTR Finale in the 10.5 roping and the Wildfire Businessman roping. He has 115.5 AQHA performance points in heading and heeling. His full sister is National Cutting Horse Association's Hall of Fame horse, Nu I Wood, who's QData earnings total over $427,000.

"Western has so many great qualities. We were drawn to him because of good mind and trainablility," says Shank. "He's so easy to be around, a real gentleman. I went to rope at Chad Masters' and tied him next to this pony mare that was in-love with him. He never even acknowledged her."

Stephens Performance Horses is an hour west of Oklahoma City, Oklahoma in the small town of Hinton. Until Riata Buckle, the Stephens were breeding Western to their own cow bred and more recently running bred mares with the goal to get a colt with a little more size and speed.

"There are so many guys that rope phenomenally, but some can out rope others simply because they are on a better horse. There is so much money in team roping. Horsepower really matters, people are now breeding for rope horses. The Riata gives stallion owners a chance to have earnings and to promote them to the public with backbone behind it, there are incentives, and it makes a colt worth more money. The program also helping trainers. Riata lets a horse be eligible for great money, every year of its life. A Riata horse owner will leave his horse at a trainer longer."

Gunagetwestern currently stands at Stephens Performance Horses.