George Laidlaw and Just Plain Awesome

          It was mid-February when George Laidlaw hurriedly walked through the local boarding facility's front door.
         It had been an extra time consuming drive due to poor road conditions. This was not the morning to be delayed. It was 5:10 a.m. and he knew the urgency. The call had come in. His best mare had foaled... three weeks early.
         Foaling experience could not dispel the fear and concern brewing inside. The foal that had been born represented over twenty-five years of showing and breeding efforts
         In 1970, the Laidlaw Family purchased their Registered Quarter Horse, to ride around the farm. By the close of the decade, the emphasis had changed.
         They had hand-picked and assembled a great broodmare band, including "Dorado's Autumn" Reserve Youth World Champion, etc., "Girlie Seeker" 3rd at the Congress, AQHA Champion, Ontario Champion, etc., "Donna Cash" Reserve World Champion, Canadian Champion, AQHA Champion, multiple Ontario Champion, Quarterama Winner, etc., and other awarded mares such as "Sonny's Brite Hope", "Skip's Impressive", "Slipper's Cast" and "Dolly Levis".
         The produce from these mares had produced over a dozen "Ontario Breeder's Futurity" class winners, Quarterama winners and countless year-end Hi-point awards.
         It was also at this point in time where the Laidlaw's acquired the young stallion "Bonanza's Scorpion". "Scorp" would go on to be one of Canada's most accomplished and influential stallions.
         By 1980, Family interests had also changed, and the partnership amongst George, Marvin, Robert and Dave Laidlaw (deceased) was closed. The brothers would each choose their own level of interest.
         As part of the dissolvement, George chose a weanling stud colt out of the fore-mentioned mare, "Donna Cash". This colt was sired by "Skippa Star" and had taken three years of breeding to produce. The 1st foal had died at foaling

  . But alas, this foal, "Cash Commander" was delivered back to Ontario, where he would eventually carve out his own place in the stallion books. "Cash Commander" sired dozens of Futurity Class Winners throughout Ontario and the U.S.A.. His producer's accomplishments were bountiful and George knew from his breeding experience that this stallion's offspring would be great producers. One outside mare in particular, "Sailors Bay Lady", a 3rd in the Nation Wester Pleasure Horse with over 300 AQHA Western Pleasure points stuck in his mind. He had seen this mare before at the breeding farm in Illinois. "Cash" had twice stood stallion service at this complex and the prior year's crop was arriving. This black mare, "Sailors Bay Lady" had produced a great cross with "Cash Commander" and though George's own two mares would be foaling, he knew he had to own her. The purchase of this filly required a package purchase of eight horses. The owner would sell all or none. George made the deal, to acquire the filly
         "Wave of Cash" was bought as a baby to be George's next program broodmare. This mare incorporated the bloodlines he had been pursuing in the industry.
         Though "Wave of Cash" was, for the most part idle in the pastures for the next few years, George continued to grow his interests with other horses including "The Next Star", an AQHA Champion and AQHA leading sire of Hunt Seat Futurity horses, "Daddy's Beau Derek" a Reserve Congress Champion, and many of the Futurity, Hi-Point, and Quarterama Winning Cash Commander babies.
         George continued to look to the future. Upon breeding age, he decided to take "Wave of Cash" to the newly arrived "An Awesome Mister", a young stallion that had attained a tremendous individual show record as being a "World Champion" halter horse and a "Congress Winner" in western pleasure. The ensuing foal had been anticipated with great passion.
 
   For just under eleven months had passed since her last breeding.
     The history played over and over again in George Laidlaw's mind. The slow drive allowed for much time to replay the highs and lows from all of those years.
         As he walked through the barn doors, his thoughts changed from the memories of the past horses to the situation on hand with "Wave of Cash" and the "Baby".
         Needless to say, things have turned out "Just Plain Awesome" for George. "Just Plain Awesome" was this early foal. Though initially, the colt created much concern, in a matter of weeks, this colt was coming along nicely. By summer, he was looking good, and by fall, he was looking great.
         As a weanling, at the following futurities, Area 1, Mid-West, OQHBF and SOHA, he was twice first and twice second. As a yearling, "Just Plain Awesome" was first at all of the futurities in halter competition and was a lunge-line futurity class winner as well. As a Yearling, he had stood Grand Champion Halter Stallion at Ontario Shows, as well.
         As a 2 year old, this colt had 3 halter futurity wins and 1 second. "Just Plain Awesome" was the winner and twice 2nd in Western Pleasure for the three Ontario based futurities and top 10 placings at the major U.S. futurities, including "The Big Cheese", "Southern Belle", and "Tom Powers".
         As a 3 yer old, "Just Plain Awesome" was the OQHA Breeders Futurity Hi-Point Trophy Saddle Winner, Mid-Western Futurity Hi-Point Winner, Area 1 Breeder's Futurity Trophy Saddle Winner and was a multiple Circuit Champion. As well, in 1997, the dam "Wave of Cash" was acclaimed an Equistat Leading Halter Futurity Producer.
         In 1998, "Just Plain Awesome" was Ontario's High Point Aged Stallion and Ontario's High Point Junior Western Pleasure Horse. He also achieved his AQHA Superior Western Pleasure Award and was the ony known Canadian Bred, Canadian Owned Stallion qualifying for the "World Show" in Junior Western Pleasure, as a four year old.
 
         1998 proved to be a milestone for this young horse in another way. His first foal crop arrived with four babies to choose from, all stud colts, George and his son Todd picked one early division colt and one late division colt to represent "Just Plain Awesome" at the Futurites. These two colts were 1st and 2nd at the Area 1 Futurity, had three 1st and a 3rd at the Mid-West Futurity, and both colts ended up being 2nd at the OQHBF under the judging averages.
         Quite a start for the stallion's breeding career!
         Ironically, 1998 Awards will alsomark the 25th anniversary for such Hi-Point Awards for George, It was in 1978 that the Laidlaw's achieved their first Ontario Hi-Point Awards.
         Imagine, a quarter of a century later, once again George will receive Ontario High Point Awards with pedigree and ownership interests tracing back to his original horse stock! A rare accomplishment in the Horse Industry.