Nelson Vivas has been riding cutting horses for only three years, and had only three RIDES on Playboy Is Smooth when he won the Super Stakes Amateur Derby!
Amateurs, if you’re looking for a new champion to celebrate to remind yourself that great success is possible even for those of us who don’t make a living in the saddle, look no further than Nelson Vivas.
Vivas, a native of Venezuela who now calls Redland, Florida home, was introduced to the sport of cutting just three years ago by his friend, fellow amateur David Taurel. A lifelong rider, Vivas quickly took to cutting and its unique thrills, to the point that he purchased a couple of acres to keep his cutting horses at home.
To make this fairy-tale story even more unbelievable, this featured performance in the 2018 Super Stakes Amateur Derby was Vivas’ third ride on Playboy Is Smooth. It does help that Playboy Is Smooth is a futurity champion himself, but as anyone who’s ever cut on a cow knows, it takes a true partnership between horse and rider to avoid eating a lot of arena dirt. This is clearly one combination that works right out of the gate.
“I always keep my animals,” Vivas chuckled in the above interview. “I know I’m supposed to sell them, but I always keep them.”
A man after our own hearts. When you have a horse like Playboy Is Smooth, you hang on tight.