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Equine Obituary - The Coach




The Coach passed away on November 4, 2017. At the time of his death, the 13 year-old stallion was owned by Dr. Barbara and Sarah Moersch of Jacksonville, Ala.

By The Skywatch and out of Queen Of Motown, The Coach was foaled on March 14, 2004 to Diana Popp of Shelbyville, Tennessee. The sorrel stallion with a white star and snip was originally named Watch Me Stroke. When the partnership of Neal Holland, Bob Kilgore and Joe Barnes came together to purchase the promising two-year-old early in 2006, they changed his name to The Coach.

Bobby Hugh started the stallion to a promising career. The Coach was placed in training with David Landrum Stables. He made his first show ring appearance at the TWHBEA Futurity, winning the Two-Year-Old Stallions class under the direction of Joe Cotten. This team came back to claim the Two-Year-Old World Grand Championship. In 2007, Cotten remained in the saddle and guided The Coach to a near flawless season. They started off with a set of wins from the Mississippi Charity and went on to earn two more from the Gallatin Lions Club and Money Tree Classic. The Three-Year-Old Stallions Section A Championship went to The Coach to bolster an impressive resume for such a young horse. They capped off the year with a win at the Alabama Jubilee.

The Coach entered his four-year-old year bigger and stronger than ever. Cotten made one last winning ride on the stallion at Gallatin. Joel Weaver took over training duties and rode The Coach to four more blues. Ending a flawless season, The Coach was named Four-Year-Old Stallions World Champion and Four-Year-Old World Grand Champion.

John Allan Callaway stepped up to take over the training duties when Weaver retired at the end of 2008. The Coach didn’t show much in his first year as an aged stallion, but that didn’t make him any less competitive. In 2009, the stallion added three wins to his resume, including the Stallions Over 15.2 Five & Over Section A World Championship.

With the opening of the 2010 show season, The Coach was moved to the training direction of Brad Davis with the late Billy Gray making the show ring appearances. Gray and The Coach earned reserve at both the Woodbury Lions Club and Moore County before going on to the International Grand Championship where they came away with the Walking Horse Championship.

The road to the crowning glory of the year was a little rocky. In the preliminary class, The Coach was excused on a technicality. However, no Horse Protection Act violation was found and The Coach was allowed to return for Stake night. Competition was fierce for that final tricolor award. Billy Gray and The Coach took their spotlight ride down victory lane with their group of owners and fans cheering them on.

Following a highly successful show ring career, The Coach headed to the breeding barn in the fall of 2010. He produced many champions, including: WGC Joe Pa, WC Curly Lambeau, WGC Really Coach, RWC I’m Johnny Majors, WC Coach’s Cheerleader, WGC Coachin And Preachin, WC Manning, WC A Sunday Rose and RWGC The Coach’s Son.

It was in 2015, The Coach caught the attention of Dr. Moersch to be added to her breeding program.

Whether in the ring or in the breeding barn, The Coach kept the playing field full of talent and excitement.

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