When Main Street Boon was born at Phil Rapp's Ranch in Weatherford, Texas, the National Cutting Horse Association's all-time leading rider had some big dreams for the sorrel colt.
Out of the second-all-time leading mare in the cutting business Playboys Ruby, "Street" was by the legendary Peptoboonsmal, whose offspring have over $26 million in earnings.
"He came out red, and we were hoping for a roan," Rapp remembered with a chuckle. "But we named him Main Street, because you don't get more main-street in bloodlines than him. And Boon came from BOOM but to play off Peptoboonsmal, we went with Boon. So Main Street Boon."
When Street was a yearling, Rapp put the colt in the 2005 NCHA Summer Spectacular Sale, where Waco Bend Ranch bought him for a whopping $100,000.
"That was the first horse they bought from us," Rapp said. "And that horse and another one that day started our relationship. We rode him some for them, but he didn’t meet our expectations. We sold him, and I heard he had gone on to be a rope horse. And that was the last I'd heard of him until today."
Enter many-time AQHA world champion and NCHA Hall-of-Famer Bobby Lewis and his partner, now two-time NFR heeler Joseph Harrison.
"He was 6," Harrison said. "And he was big. 15 hands even, and bigger than some of the head horses we have today. He was started as a cutter, and we just bought him as a trader horse really. We sold him once, but we got him back. He just got really, really good."
Street was a natural, and the bigger-than-average ex-cutter took to the heeling really fast thanks to his background. Pretty soon, like so many of Lewis and Harrison's, he ended up in the show pen.
"I showed him at the World Show two years," Harrison said. "We only showed him six times total. We showed him at Jay Wadhams Futurity in Lincoln, Nebraska. He had a sweepstakes deal he added to it, and I had taken Street up there to help. So Bob went ahead and entered him, and I won the first round, second in the second round and second in the Finals. I put like 26 points on him."
That year, it took 27 points to qualify a senior heel horse, so Harrison took him to Tulsa over the Fourth-of-July between rodeos, and rode him one day at the show and got his points. He won third on him in the senior heeling at the AQHA world show that year.
"The next year I rode him at Fort Worth for the Fast Time deal," Harrison said. "I put 22 points on him in the horse show part of it. I won second on him in the fast-time deal. I had to show him one more time to get the rest of his points, and I won reserve on him at the world show that year, and that was the last time I showed him."
Rapp, for his part, isn't surprised of the success Street has found in the roping pen.
"His damn Playboys Ruby had a couple of brothers that were very well known AQHA rope horses that had several hundred AQHA rope horse points," Rapp said. "It’s not surprising he went on to do what he did."
Since Harrison's rodeo career has taken flight, Street has become an essential part of his program. Street and Harrison made their NFR debut in 2017, amassing $82,346 in earnings and finishing fifth in the average. Street got hurt in the trailer in 2018 and wasn't fully fit-up enough to leave for the summer, so Harrison saved him for the Finals yet again.
"His stride is different when you’re loping him around and getting him ready to rope on," Harrison explained. "It’s longer and gangly. But when the head rope goes on, his feet start going double time. You can ride him as far around there as you want, and I’ve rode him by the steer I think maybe one time in his whole career. I don’t know how I actually got him by the steer that day, even. You can kick plum past the steer and when the steer turns, it seems like you’re in the perfect spot. It’s weird—he just don’t mess up."
Eight rounds in to the 2018 NFR with two-time world champion Chad Masters, Harrison has won $50,615.39, sitting eighth in the average. On the year, Harrison has $155,130.43 in earnings and sits third in the world standings.
"I think he’s my favorite one I’ve ever had," Harrison said.
And coming from Harrison, who's a heel-horse-creating machine, that's really saying something. TRJ