The latest issue of Barrel Horse news details the last 10 years from a statistical perspective. The top sires, dams, maternal sires, riders and the leading horses. As one looks at the list of horses Nate Shilabar "Hotshot" tops the list...easily. It is amazing to think he has won over a half million dollars, the majority of which was won with one of his current owners, the Steinhoff's in the saddle. The Steinhoffs certainly have an eye for a good horse as another former mount of theirs, Dial A Red Rooster is also in the top 10.
But what makes "Hotshot" the great horse that he is? Hotshots sire lands number 12 on the list of top sires but that is mostly because of Hotshot's success he only has one other horse listed as a performer. Talent Lady is the top dam with Hotshot as the only money earning offspring. So what part of the Hotshot equation made him the great horse he is today? Was it the trainer? The rider? Is there something within the horse himself that caused him to excel? It will be interesting to follow the Hotshot story as he has now been cloned. This is a controversial issue and is yet to prove that clones can be as successful performers as the originals.
Such a great horse can only be the result of many things going right and the luck of things not going wrong. Trainers, riders, genetics and heart all play a role in what makes a good horse great...it seems it all went well for Hotshot.