by Linda Scrivner

WHITE PINE, Tenn. -- MG Above The Rest with Allen Abee up was the unanimous choice of the judges at the East Tennessee Classic held June 17-18 at the Great Smoky Mountain Exposition Center. The show hosted 450 walking and racking horses. Sam Sorrell, Bill Reel and Bill Bailey judged the event where 44 out of 59 classes featured walking horses.

The show, which lasted into Sunday morning, was sponsored by the Cherokee Lions Club of Morristown, Tenn. The lions Club sponsors several programs such as the Boys Club, Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, Senior Citizens Program, the Rose Center and many other programs of Hamblem County.

The Walking Horse Stake was the climax to the two-day event and created great excitement as the entries came into the ring one at a time. Six entries rode hard for the coveted tricolor and roses, but after a second running walk was called, the judges unanimously selected the big golden stallion MG Above The Rest and Allen Abee. Rick Abee trains this talented stallion for A Walking Miracle Farm. Reserve went to another exciting roan stallion, Olympic Pusher. Ronald Mosley directed this powerhouse for Henry Mosley. Third was awarded to the team of Paul Livingston and Cold Hard Truth for Mr. and Mrs. Charles McSpadden. Each team left the ring with thunderous applause from their fans. 

MG Above The Rest and Allen Abee were congratulated by Makenzie Niston, Rick Abee, Sissy Weese, Jaxon Dockery and Tom Weese after their victory in the Walking Horse Grand Champion. 

Baucom Stables of Monroe, N.C., walked away at the top of the blue ribbon tally once again with 11 victories. Three of their eight wins were accredited to horses owned by Clay Mills. Mills won the Amateur Stake Saturday evening aboard Another Pushbutton in unanimous fashion. Mills also introduced the newest competitor on his illustrious string of horses. Urban Coyboy made his debut performance on Friday night to win the Two-Year-Old Stallion class unanimously with Chad Baucom in the irons. Mills returned on this exciting youngster Saturday and exited the ring with the blue in the Two-Year-Old Amateur Stallion division.

Yvonna Matthis and John Weihl also own horses that claimed three blues under Baucom Stables banner. On Friday night, Yvonna Matthis awed the crowd as she claimed victory unanimously in the 12-entry Ladies Amateur Specialty class aboard I’m Game. The team returned and once again gained victory in the competitive Four-Year-Old Stallion Amateur class on Saturday. Chad Baucom also rode to victory aboard their Keeper’s Prince in the Three-Year-Old Stallion class.

The Baucom crew captured two blues with horses owned by C.M. and Connie Hess. She’s Push In Command and Chad Baucom proudly exited the ring with the blue in the Three-Year-Old Mare and Gelding class Friday. Lindsey Hess and Miss Dumas Ebony added another blue to their lengthy resume when they captured the Youth 11 and Under title Saturday evening.

Clay Mills proudly wore the Amateur Grand Champion roses 

I’m An Evil Rebel and Madison Holloway received top honors unanimously in the 15-entry Youth Specialty, 12-17 class under Baucom Stables’ guidance. Athy Robinson and Charger’s Gold Card claimed victory unanimously in the 10-entry North Carolina Specialty Members Only class. Their final blue was won by Tyler Baucom and Jazz House in the Four-Year-Old Amateur Specialty Mare and Gelding class.

Steve Hankins Stables, located in Tazewell, Va., added seven blues to their credit. Jennifer Brown had a night to remember on Saturday as she won three blues herself. She and her mother, Diana, were beside themselves with their wonderful successes. First Brown topped the 16-entry Amateur Show Pleasure Specialty class with a unanimous win. She returned three classes later and rode to victory in the 10-entry Pro-Am class with Steve Hankins riding the first way. Their shared mount was Pride’s Gold Millennium. Her crowning triumph of the evening was in the 10-entry Three-Year-Old Amateur Mare and Gelding class where she and Senorita San Grai made the victory pass.

The Raffle, owned by the Jim Wilkerson family, won blues both nights. In 2004, he was the 15.2 and Under Amateur Specialty champion with Kurt Wilkerson. Wilkerson rode to victory Friday in the Men’s Amateur Specialty class. Wife Amanda Wilkerson returned on Saturday night to win the roses in the 10-entry Amateur Specialty Stake aboard this little head shaking, striding black horse.

Stormy Walks and Gerald Smith, fresh from their Virginia Celebration victory last week, claimed the blue in the Amateur 50 and Over Specialty class. UNC and Kenny Compton proudly hailed from Hankins Stables to make the victory pass in the very large and competitive Three-Year-Old Amateur Stallions class.

Kurt Wilkerson congratulated Amanda Wilkerson on her Amateur Specialty Grand Championship win on The Raffle. Kurt also won the Men's Amateur class with the same horse.

Robert Kellett Stables claimed three victories at the East Tennessee Classic. Their first victory came in the Two-Year-Old Mare and Gelding class with Dumas On The Prowl. Kellett directed this outstanding colt to this victory. On Saturday, Jim Gore claimed a second East Tennessee Classic victory aboard Dumas On The Prowl in the Two-Year-Old Amateur Mare and Gelding class. Both classes were won unanimously. Meagan Chastain made Kellett Stables and the entire Mark Chastain family proud as she won one of the toughest classes of the show, the Walking Pony Youth Specialty.

Simone Klemenz and her A Fantastic Choice took home two blues. This team made their first trip to the winner’s circle in the 21-entry Amateur Trail Pleasure Walking Specialty class. The next night they earned their second blue in the 10-entry Trail Pleasure Walking Stake class.

C.B. Daughtridge took home two blues with Southmark, his entry, trained by Mike Kluttz of High Hope Stables. Their first victory came in the first class on Friday night, the Amateur English Lite-Shod Specialty class. On Saturday evening, the duo returned to the winner’s circle in the English Open Lite-Shod Specialty class.

Mike Janeway of C.L. Kline Farms also received a couple of blues and made a clean sweep of the halter classes. She's Pushed To Command earned the blue in the Yearling Fillies class. Janeway’s second victory was in the Yearling Stallion class with Walking For Real.

The remaining 12 blues from the East Tennessee Class were received by single competitors. Vickie Hughes Grindstaff and Fantazmic Cash received the top honors in the ETWHA Ladies Auxiliary class unanimously. B.H. Hodge earned the title in the 15.2 and Under Amateur Specialty division with Barcelona for trainer Joe Berrier.

David Messimer claimed top honors aboard Devyn Lambert’s Charger’s Turbo in the Western Lite-Shod Specialty class. Eric Wilson and This Spirit’s In Command took the top honors in the 10-entry Show Pleasure Specialty, unanimously, for Ed and Ellene Smith.

Matt Tomlinson took the victory in the 10-entry Walking Park Performance class with Final’s Black Streaker. Blake Hull and Pusher’s Senator’s Go-boy walked their way to the winner’s circle in the 10-entry Juvenile Trail Pleasure class under Stacy Gunter’s guidance from Ronald Mosley Stables.

Lindsay Hess and Miss Dumas Ebony claimed another victory in the Youth 11 & Under class. Connie and C.M. Hess and John Morris joined the pair.

Private Terms and Dana Kyte made their way to the winner’s circle in the Amateur Owned and Trained Specialty class. Derek Bonner received the top honors aboard A Secret Agent in the Stallion and Gelding class.

Stephen Hankins, Jr. and Spookie-Spook made Ridgeview Stables proud as they received the top honors, unanimously, in the Open Specialty class. Mavis Campbell and Skyline earned the top honors in unanimous fashion in the Open Park Pleasure Specialty under the guidance of trainer Harrell Jones of Cedar Grove Stables.

Keshia Ashe and Generator’s Flashpoint were unanimous winners in the Park Pleasure Youth Specialty class under the direction of Wayne Conley. The final single blue of the show was received by Sky Trek and Doug Brown in the ETWHA Specialty Members class.

John Weihl and Chad Baucom congratulated Yvonna Mattis and I'm Game following one of their many tatelnted Four Four-Year-Old Stallion Amateur wins.

This concludes Walking Horse Report’s coverage of the East Tennessee Classic. Complete results follow and can be view and printed at The current standings of the High Point Report are also available at our web site and in this paper.