World Grand Champion in 2009

Official Photo courtesy of Bradley Dick

The combination of Watch It Now and Jimmy McConnell walked away with the Tennessee Walking Horse World Grand Championship on Saturday night at the 2009 Annual Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration in Shelbyville, TN.


Watch It Now and Jimmy McConnell making their victory pass -
Photo by
Shane Shiflet, courtesy of Walking Horse Chat

The wind was whipping the flags of states and nations over the Celebration grounds Saturday night, and the horses were whipping the crowd into a frenzy just below. After 11 days of classes, triumph and heartbreak often riding side by side, it was time to declare the World Grand Champion.

It was a show filled with surprises and the crowd got its money's worth. Although hometown favorite, Rowdy Rev did not get to show due to an injury, there were enough surprise entries to keep everyone guessing. While the World Grand Championship class is open to mares, geldings and stallions under 15.2 and under 5 years of age, it's the stallions 15.2 and over and 5 and over who usually fill it out.

Not so this year. Of 12 horses showing in the Aged Stallions 15.2 and over class, only nine entered the World Grand Championship. Many trainers saw this as a chance to spotlight their own horses.

 


Watch It Now on His Victory Pass as the
2009 Tennessee Walking Horse World Grand Champion
with Trainer Jimmy McConnell up.  Photo by Avalon Photography

Photo courtesy of Jerry D. Sizemore

When the 11 eligible entries worked their way into the ring, the crowd rose and cheered, knowing they would see some true talent in the ring. The bold stallion, Watch It Now, vanquished the field following two workouts, much to the pleasure of those in the stands.


Photo courtesy of Jerry D. Sizemore

Photo courtesy of Jerry D. Sizemore

There was a long hush as darkness fell on the arena and the spotlight swept the field, glistening off of sweaty hides and glittering bits. That hush ended in a roar as the announcer called out the number of the new World Grand Champion: Watch it Now! And everyone was watching -- and jumping to their feet and shouting as trainer Jimmy McConnell took the slick black stallion around the ring under the spotlight.
 

Watch It Now, aka The Titan, and You Watch It, is a 6 year old black stallion who was bred in Florence, Alabama by Jack Littrell and Steve Roberts and foaled 3/13/2003. In 2004, he was owned by Mrs. Jeanne Hyneman of Memphis, TN, and in 2005, became the property of Joe Barnes of Pigeon Forge TN, and Joe and Cena Martin of Shelbyville, TN. In 2008, part ownership in the horse was sold to Sherry Holland & Mary Dell Kilgore of Northport and Decatur, Al. The spring of 2008 saw him sold to Bill Johnson of Waterfall Farms in Atlanta, GA.


2009 World Grand Champion Watch It Now with Jimmy McConnell and
Owners William and Sandra Johnson.
  Photo by Avalon Photography


WIN shows off his World Grand Champion disposition
with a young fan.
Photo courtesy of
Bradley Dick

Professional horse trainer Jimmy McConnell of Formac Stables in Union City figures hes been to the annual Shelbyville horse show more times than he can recall. Id say at least 22 or 23 years straight, he said. It was the third title in the past five years for McConnell, who also won in 2004 on The Black Night Shade and in 2007 aboard Master of Jazz.

Watch It Now, nicknamed WIN,  was sired by 1995 3-Year-Old World Grand Champion, The Skywatch, and is out of Bo-mars Pride of Jubilee. Many know the stature and importance of The Skywatch and the many champions he has sired, but WIN's dam line is also quite impressive. Bo-Mars Pride of Jubilee was a former show mare currently owned by former trainer and Celebration judge Jack Littrell and was shown by Dr. Burris Boshell of Alabama. Though not a World Champion, she was a very consistent show mare. Her 3 offspring by The Skywatch are The World Grand Champion Watch It Now, A World Champion Sky Walk and a Reserve World Champion Another Sky Walk.

 


Watch It Now with Trainer Jimmy McConnell up. 
Photo by
Shane Shiflet

Watch It Now on His Victory Pass as the
2009 Tennessee Walking Horse World Grand Champion
with Trainer Jimmy McConnell up.  Photo by
Shane Shiflet

As a 5-year-old, Watch It Now won three championship classes in 2008. Last year, he also took two fourths at the Celebration, including one in the 4-Year-Old World Grand Championship class. He was reserve champion in the A Section of the Aged Stallions 15.2 and over class at this year's Celebration.


Photo courtesy of
Bradley Dick

WIN, on the field at MTSU.
Photo courtesy of
Bradley Dick
Watch it Now is owned by Waterfall Farms and will join their stallion lineup.
If you wish to print off this pedigree, click HERE to load a black and white copy.
If you have a story or photos of Watch It Now that you would like added to this page, 
please forward them to Walkers West.

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