Guy Ray Rutland

Guy Ray Rutland

Born in 1917 north of Okemah, Oklahoma, Guy Ray Rutland wanted to grow up to be just like his dad, a rancher, whose only duties were to saddle a horse and ride around all day—or so he thought.

He married his wife Millie on October 15, 1938, and worked as a short-order cook afterward to make a living. He was a dedicated family man with three children: Cliff, Becky, and Jeff.

In 1946 he bought Gold King Bailey as a yearling; this colt turned out to be the foundation of the Rutland Ranch bloodlines. Many acclaimed this colt to be “one of the best.” In fact, in 1948, Gold King Bailey appeared on the cover of The Ranchman, the major livestock publication of the time.

Primarily a cattle rancher, Rutland would haul good-looking palomino horses to Indiana and bring automobiles back. After depositing some of the checks from the sale of these horses, his banker suggested that he “sell those cows and buy more horses,” and that’s exactly what he did.

In 1950 the Rutlands moved to Independence, Kansas, and began to build a broodmare band with daughters of Overtime Leo, Joak, Poco Bueno, Royal Bar, Leo, Zan V, Oklahoma Star, Tonto Bars Gill, Star Bright Moore, Levan, Red Bee Moore, Chicaro Bill, Vandy, Bert, Hard Twist, Wimpy, and many others. The building of this select group continued into the 1960s.

In 1963, Rutland offered to sell a weanling named Pacific Bailey for $400. Luckily, no one took him up on the offer. In 1964 Gold King Bailey died, and only three months later so did Gold Pacific; the young Pacific Bailey was selected as the replacement sire for the ranch. In 1965 Pacific Bailey, an AQHA Champion, was a stakes winner of four futurities with 14 firsts and 3 seconds from 19 starts. Although he didn’t get to run in the All-American Futurity that year, he had outrun four of the top five finishers earlier that year. In November of his two year-old year Pacific Bailey set an AQHA record for 300 yards; he went on to become one of the great sires of the breed, siring race, halter and performance horses.

Not only did Rutland become an AQHA Leading Breeder of Race Winners in 1967, he also held his first annual production sale. These sales became a nationally known annual event.

During his lifetime, Guy Ray Rutland was named a leading Breeder of Race Winners with Most Wins, The Leading Breeder of Point Earners with Most Performance Points, 4th Leading Breeder of Race ROM Qualifiers of All Time (1945-1970), a Leading Breeder of 1970 Halter Class Winners, a Leading Breeder of Show ROM Horses, and a Leading Breeder of AQHA Champions.

The 1970s were also notable for Rutland in many ways. In 1971 Rutland sponsored the First Rutland Ranch Futurity and Derby, run in Kansas. The first production sale held in the new mare motel—a one of a kind facility—took place in 1972. This facility had overall dimensions of 320’ by 252’ and had 148 permanent stall measuring 16 x 16 with automatic waterers and infrared heating; the building also housed an arena where the sales were held.

Rutland was often called “a walking dictionary of horse pedigrees.” He adopted a proverb that was published in his first sale catalog and all succeeding ones, and soon became part of his advertising: “Make New Friends. . . Keep the Old. . . One is Silver. . .the Other is Gold.

Throughout the years Guy Ray Rutland stood some of the greatest stallions in AQHA history including Gold King Bailey, Gold Pacific, Pacific Bailey, Star Bright Moore, Gold Chip Bailey, King Leo Bailey, Carrara Marble, Bar Money, Jet Stop, Mr Smooth Pac, Joyful Hope, Deal the Cards, and Native Arrow.

Rutland’s legacy has continued even after his death in 1988. In 2000 the Rutland Ranch received the prestigious Legacy Award from AQHA for over 50 years of continuous breeding of American Quarter Horses: Rutland had registered Gold King Bailey in the National Quarter Horse Breeders Association before the AQHA was formed.

Guy Ray Rutland was inducted into the Kansas Quarter Horse Hall of Fame for his outstanding contributions to the Quarter Horse industry and his dedication to the American Quarter Horse.