Appaloosa Stallion

Registration:  ApHC #T180530
Foaled:  April 13, 1973
Died:     August, 1994
Color:    Chestnut

Goer - "Love At First Sight"
(courtesy Appaloosa Journal)

From the time Tom Simmons of Herald, California, saw Goer, he knew he had to have the colt. Goer, foaled April 13, 1973, was purchased under the condition that Simmons would actively promote the loud-colored youngster by Go Bay Go and out of Miss Bar Heels (AQHA). Simmons brought Goer, along with the colt's dam, to his Herald, California, ranch where he began preparing Goer for competition.

Goer's first year on the show circuit was nothing less than exceptional. With George Minic leading, Goer won his class at the Denver Stock Show and went on to win the Southwestern International, the California State Fair and the Grand National Livestock Show. His two-year-old season was just as impressive, standing grand champion at the Wyoming State Fair, GEAR, Kansas State Fair, Tulsa State Fair, Mid-Con, Chicago International and Grand National Shows.

Goer continued to win big his three-year-old year, logging championship stallion honors at the Fort Worth, San Antonio and Houston Livestock shows, and with reserve honors in Denver. With Ted Turner leading, Goer wrapped up the National Show three-year-old stallion championship in time to return home and finish his breeding season.

1976 also marked a turning point in the management of Goer. Simmons was able to devote his efforts full-time in the horse business, and Dick Kennedy purchased half interest in Goer. This was the beginning of Simmons-Kennedy Ranches. Unfortunately, Kennedy's wife was diagnosed with cancer, and although he maintained an interest in Goer, Simmons became Goer's primary manager.

Within two years, business was booming at Simmons-Kennedy Ranches. Goer had made a name for himself as a premier sire due to the success of National Champions Gojak, Tony Lama and My Daddy's Tuff.

"We just started raising National and World champions," Simmons said in a December 1993 Appaloosa Journal interview. "It wasn't unusual to get two, three, four World or National champions at one show. Of course the breeding contracts just rolled in."

It wasn't long before Goer's popularity was growing faster than Simmons could keep up with. Simmons soon realized that by selling Goer's get, rather than showing them himself, he could supply the demand for Goer's colts, and he didn't beat the competition -- ultimately potential customers. In 1980, 1983 and 1984 Goer won the National Show's get of sire class and both the National and World Show's titles in 1985.

"...for years we had more business than we could handle and in the horse business, that's quite a position to be in," said Simmons in the 1993 interview.

But in 1994, just as a new partnership was developing between Simmons and Jim and Karol Nylund, who had replaced Dick Kennedy, disaster struck. Goer broke his leg in a breeding accident.

While teasing a mare, who was safely within the confines of her stall, Goer reared back when the mare kicked out. The mare never made contact with Goer, but his reflex reaction resulted in his left front leg nicking a feeder.

"It must have been the angle of the impact, not the force that was responsible," said Simmons in a November 1986 Appaloosa Journal interview. "The wound was just a little cut about an inch long and not even deep enough to bleed." However, x-rays revealed that Goer had sustained a 5-inch long diagonal and vertical hairline fracture. He was given a 50 percent chance of recovery.

Confined to his stall for eight weeks with his leg immobilized, Goer's breeding season had to be cut short, but this was a small price to pay for the full recovery of this influential stallion. The confinement was followed by an exercise program to rebuild Goer's muscle tone and stamina.

Goer stood at Nylunds' Rainbow Ranch in Colorado until 1992 where he continued to sire winning get. He was then sent to Dennis and Mary Lynn O'Leary's in Illinois where he stood his last season. Some of Goer's most influential get include Goever, King Goer, Go-You-Er, Go For Me, Goers DBL Bright and O'Hara -- all Appaloosa Horse Club champions -- and She's Awesome and Spec-To-Go -- Appaloosa Horse Club champions and versatility champions.

In all, Goer sired 722 registered foals, earning himself the title of all-time leading sire. A leading sire of medallion winners by age 10 and a bronze medallion winner himself, his progeny have won more than 48 bronze, two silver medallions and 180 ROMs. In 1995, Goer joined The Executive, Rock Star and Roman's Straw Man to become one of only four stallions to ever receive the Appaloosa Horse Club's performance sire award. At that time, Goer's get had earned more than 7,300 halter points and 1,600 performance points.

Simmons said in the November 1986 interview following Goer's accident, "We just hope that when his time does come, it's the result of old age -- not an accident -- and that by then he will have made an incredible mark on the Appaloosa breed and be respected and remembered long afterwards."

Goer's impact on the breed has far exceeded all of Simmons' expectations and the influence this great stallion continues to exude is legendary.

In August of 1994, at age 21, Goer passed away due to natural causes at O'Leary Farms. He was inducted into the Appaloosa Horse Club Hall of Fame in 1994.

{This article, by Robin Hirzel, and accompanying photograph were originally published in the Appaloosa Journal, December 1997, Vol 51, No.12, "Legends Goer Love at first sight" and are used here by permission.}

Copyright © 1997 Appaloosa Horse Club. All rights reserved.

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