Kids Horse to Futurity Champ

SS Platinum Cat, Kollin VonAhn Notch Gold Buckle Futurities Spring Event Maturity Heeling Title for $30K
SS Platinum Cat Kollin VonAhn
VonAhn and SS Platinum Cat won $30,000 in Ardmore at the Gold Buckle Futurities Spring 2024 event. | Shelby Lynn Photos

The only tuning SS Platinum Cat got in the last two weeks for the Gold Buckle Futurities Spring Event came from 7-year-old Steele VonAhn, who loped “Popcorn” on the river bottom for a couple hours the day before the show.

But that didn’t stop the kid’s-horse-turned-heeling-phenom from dominating the competition and earning $30,000 with Dad Kollin May 12 in Ardmore.

SS Platinum Cat got his second futurity win with VonAhn, putting a 912.39 on the board on four head, worth $20,000—plus $9,000 for the Elite Stallion Incentive (split $4,500 each with the owners of the horse’s sire, Platinum Vintage) win and another $1,000 for a go-round win. SS Platinum Cat is out of Cat Can Boom by Boomernic.

“Since January, I’ve rode that horse maybe 10 times,” VonAhn, who’s got two gold buckles to his name, said. “Steele rides him. I don’t have to ride him. I lope him a few circles, and he’s perfect. Steele does whatever she wants with him. 

SS Platinum Cat

“The day before we went to the futurity, we live close to the Canadian River, and there’s a spot over here with trails and it’s real sandy,” VonAhn continued. “She’s just learned to lope and likes to lope. She’s been begging me to go to the river and ride. I got home from Corpus Christi at 8 a.m. Saturday morning, and the first thing as I come through the door is, ‘DADDY can we go ride down at the river?!’ That was the last thing I wanted to do, honestly. I hadn’t rode any of my horses since Jay’s (ARHFA) futurity two weeks before. Then it was Kansas City, Guymon, Clovis and then down to Corpus. I didn’t touch them. I had one afternoon of no sleep, but I’d like to rope on them before I go down to the Gold Buckle deal Sunday. But all Steele wanted to do was go to the river, so I figured I couldn’t do nothing in a day on my horses anyway. She loped that poor yellow sucker until there wasn’t a dry hair on him.”

That work paid off, with SS Platinum Cat besting VonAhn’s other two futurity horses—WDP Rey Jay and Rack City—who were second and fifth and won another $19,000 for their efforts.

With limited showing, Gold Buckle brings SS Platinum Cat to $55,358 in QData earnings at just 5.

“He’s just good,” VonAhn said. “Honestly, probably the best thing I did for him was, after Fort Worth in the fall, I didn’t win hardly anything. They didn’t like my horses. Being a poor loser, I decided I needed good rope horses, and I didn’t care if they were pretty anymore. We were going to roping on him. Andy (Ward) was getting ready for the NFR stuff then, and I ran 30 to 40 steers on him a day for that. I treated him less than a practice horse. And he got real good. I did that up until Andrew left for Las Vegas. I took him to every 12-slide everything I could go to. And then I got off him.”

The horse stood out in Ardmore, with strong steers in a realistic setup. VonAhn’s ProRodeo partner Andrew Ward helped on every run.

“He’s just a showy kind of horse.” VonAhn said. “To me, he’s not real big, but he does everything in a big way. He stops good and strong, and he has that presence about him. It’s been that way forever. When he works, people like it. I don’t know why he did better than the other two horses, but he always does.”

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