The Best Martini is Exceeding Rhonda Malone’s Expectations
By Gabrielle Sasse, PleasureHorse.com
On another bright and sunny day at the 2013 Tom Powers Triple Challenge Futurity, we spoke to Buddy and Rhonda Malone who own the young stallion, The Best Martini. “Martin,” as he is affectionately called, had quite the day on Thursday, winning the 3 Year Old $2,500 Limited Horse Western Pleasure with trainer Brian Cox! Martin placed first under three of the judges and second under the fourth. Although, they are busily preparing to show today, we managed to talk to trainer Brian Cox, and Rhonda, about this adorable stud.
“We have had quite the year,” Rhonda smiles as she talks about her first stallion. “We won the slot class at the SOQHA, and were co-champions at the Rockstar show. We lost the tie-breaker on that one though. We have the worst luck with tie-breaker judges!” she laughs. “We had a great time at the Little Futurity, going Reserve in the Limited 3 Year Old and Champion in the Slot Class. He’s had numerous circuit champions, green champions, and so on, that I just can’t remember them all.”
Rhonda first purchased Martin from Masterson Farms, LLC, with Mitch Leckey. “Ken Masterson didn’t want to part with him!” Rhonda shares. “We finally settled on a price and Martin came home with us.” Rhonda has always had a goal of owning a stallion and doing well with him, and Martin has come to exceed her expectations. “I’ve had horses for the past 25 years. Show horses, broodmares, geldings, owning them, showing them, and I’ve had it all. Bad ones, good ones, ones that run off with you… you name it! I’ve loved having been with Brian. If he says the horse is ready to show, I can really trust that it is ready to show. Brian and Martin just have this ‘thing!’ Martin lights up when he gets in the pen- he loves to show!
“If we had brought him home and started showing him and he wasn’t as great as he has been, I would have gelded him,” she explains. “There are just too many babies on the ground out there that don’t do much and it breaks my heart to see these horses out there unwanted. I live by only breeding what we can make better.” Rhonda shared how she currently has several “lawn ornaments.” (Geldings at home who don’t have a job but she just can’t bear to get rid of.)
“I want to be a responsible stallion owner,” she continues. Rhonda is moving The Best Martini to Pine View Farms for his inaugural 2014 breeding season. “We’ll take him there after show season is done, he’ll learn how to be a stallion, and then we’ll take him back and show again. And that will be our plan as long as he allows us to [continue showing].” Rhonda has a few broodmares at Pine View Farms and is very excited about the move. “And who knows?” she laughs. “He may be gelded in three years if he isn’t producing. I don’t want more unwanted foals.”
It’s clear Rhonda is smitten with Martin.
“He has been the kindest, gentlest stallion,” Rhonda says with an affectionate look at the three year old who is falling asleep in the crossties. “I just love him.”
Best of luck to Martin and Brian during the remaining classes at the Tom Powers this weekend, and for the rest of the show season! We are certainly looking forward to what this great young stallion does next.
Brian Cox takes a moment to chat with Gabe about his win and plans for the rest of the 2013 show season.
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