CH The Daily Lottery

Photo courtesy of Brooke Jacobs/USEF Archive
(2004 – )
Owned by High Hickory Farm
Inducted: 2013
Gabe and Elizabeth Deknatel of High Hickory Farm took a gamble on CH The Daily Lottery when they purchased him in 2009, and they're now reaping the rewards. The winner of multiple Grand Champion titles, The Daily Lottery has made an indisputable mark on the American Saddlebred show circuit, dominating the amateur five-gaited division with Gabe Deknatel in the irons.

"You could always see that incredible energy," Deknatel said. "If there were any doubts, it was that he would be too strong, too energetic, too wild"¦ And that has been the challenge of working with him. His being great actually means trying to rein him in to some extent."

Deknatel and The Daily Lottery began their partnership with wins at the 2009 UPHA/American Royal National Championship Show, taking both the qualifier and championship class of the amateur five-gaited division. The Daily Lottery's trainer, John Conatser, brought him back to compete in the overall five-gaited championship, where he again was victorious. Those wins kicked off an incredible streak for The Daily Lottery and Deknatel: from late in 2009 until August 2012, the pair was undefeated in amateur five-gaited competition.

During this streak, CH The Daily Lottery collected Grand Champion titles at prominent shows all over the country, including the Kentucky Fall Classic, the Bonnie Blue National Horse Show, the Midwest Charity Horse Show, and the Kentucky State Fair World's Championship Horse Show. He earned recognition in 2011 as the United Professional Horsemen's Association (UPHA) Overall Saddlebred Five-Gaited Horse of the Year, an honor he repeated in 2012.

At the 2012 National Horse Show in Lexington, Kentucky, The Daily Lottery and Deknatel put on a crowd-pleasing performance to claim the $1,000 Five Gaited Amateur Stake. Two days later, they followed it up with a victory in the $1,500 Five Gaited Amateur Championship.

The 2012 Kentucky State Fair World's Championship Horse Show marked an epic showdown between CH The Daily Lottery and CH Courageous Lord, two stars of the five-gaited divisions. Both horses had accumulated numerous championships, but they hadn't competed head-to-head since the 2009 Five-Gaited National Championship, when The Daily Lottery had walked away with the victory with John Conatser aboard.

At their 2012 meeting, in the $3,500 Amateur Five-Gaited Championship, judges chose the two horses for a workout to determine the winner, and they dueled for victory in front of an enthralled crowd. Courageous Lord edged out The Daily Lottery for the win, but the crowd gave The Daily Lottery a standing ovation for his valiant effort.

Let me win, but if I cannot win, let me be brave in the attempt, the creed of the Special Olympians, was also the creed of The Daily Lottery that day. Even against the best in the world, The Daily Lottery refused to falter.

"He's incredibly game and ambitious, and he has a huge heart," said Deknatel. "He's got an incredible amount of energy, but it's all put into going forward and working hard. He's very ambitious about going out there and doing his thing."

The Daily Lottery impresses spectators with his striking good looks, speed, and big, flashy gaits. His consistency and work ethic have allowed him to rise to the top of his discipline. He seems to know when it's show time, staying relaxed at home to save his energy for the big moment.

"He's very laid back in his stall before he works," Deknatel explained. "You wouldn't look at him and recognize that he was going to be a great show horse. He's there half asleep most of the time. He does like being handled and being scratched and petted."

"He is a truly great horse, and they don't come that often," Deknatel went on. "Great horses are hard to find. If you get one that you get along with "“ it's lucky and it's a blessing and it's an incredible experience to be around such an excellent athlete and such an interesting personality, and he's got both of those in spades."