August 3, 2010
Some might say that he’s too old, but Docs Some Boss isn’t going to let that stop him from making his last run at another world championship.
It was 4:30 a.m. when the Leges arrived in Oklahoma City for the 2010 Built Ford Tough AQHYA World Championship Show. They drove nine and a half hours through the night from Duson, Louisiana, just to beat the heat. Their reason for hauling at night: they were carrying precious cargo.
Docs Some Boss, aka “Doc,” is irreplaceable to the Leges. The 28-year-old chestnut gelding, by Docs Strawboss and out of Sugar Bar’s Sis by Sugar Bars, has been part of the Lege family for 22 years. He carried Carl and Gerri Lege’s daughter, Jennifer, to a reserve youth world championship in 1998 in stake racing and the duo returned in 1999 to win the coveted gold trophy.
Originally intended as a heeling horse for Carl, Jennifer snuck in two years after the Lege’s purchased Doc and took him as her own. But Carl’s not too torn up over it – aside from Jennifer’s multitude of top-10 finishes at the Ford Youth World, which she qualified for every year that she was a youth, she took Doc to the high school national finals rodeo and the college national finals rodeo, when she was riding for McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana.
When Carl and Gerri’s niece, Paige Nevils, moved in with them three and a half years ago, they knew that Doc needed to make one last run at the world title, but this time with Paige. Before she moved in with her aunt and uncle, Paige had never ridden a horse. Now she comes at the 2010 Ford Youth World with three years of riding experience.
Paige, 13, says that when she runs Doc, he doesn’t act like your average 28-year-old horse.
“Whenever he’s by the alleyway he gets all hyped up, like he’s a young horse,” Paige says, “but then he’s all laid back whenever he’s not running.”
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“He’s been around enough,” Gerri says, “that when he gets in an alleyway, he knows that it’s all business. He’s not one that you can really practice a whole lot on because he’s been doing it for so long. Most of the thing is the trust – he’s got to trust you; you got to know when to cue him at the right time, especially on his left side. He’s gonna give you 150 percent, no matter what. You can never underestimate him. You know they may say, ‘Oh, well, he’s old,’ but she qualified him in one show [this year]. She went to one Quarter Horse show and qualified him – that has to say a lot.”
However, this will probably be Doc’s final year competing. Unfortunately, Gerri doesn’t think that Doc will hold up for Paige’s younger sister, Alexis, 6, so the Leges are on the hunt for another horse. But that’s proved to be a difficult task – they find that Doc is one in a million.
“We’ve started a lot of young horses that have never even come close to him,” Gerri says. “He’s an all-around horse – he can do everything, and he does everything well. We’ve never had another horse like that. We’ve had one horse for this, and one horse for that, but we always load him up in the trailer, and if we didn’t need him, someone else would climb on him. He’s one of those ‘old faithfuls.’ ”
And so far, for an older horse, Doc’s been really easy to keep going.
“He is the easiest horse to upkeep,” Carl says. “He just gets a little vitamin for his joints. He gets senior by Nutrena. And he has his own stall with a turn out pen.”
Doc has suffered a little wear and tear over the years – he’s been blind in his left eye for 12 years.
“One thing about Doc is that he has to have a lot of trust in whoever rides him, because with his blind eye,” Carl says.
Even though the whole Lege family has played a significant role in helping Paige get ready for her first Ford Youth World, it’s Jennifer who has been instrumental to Paige’s success. Unfortunately, the Leges still have a herd of horses and cattle back home in Louisiana and someone had to draw to the short straw to stay home – Jennifer was that someone. However, America’s Horse TV has allowed Jennifer to watch her favorite horse make one last run at a world championship.
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