June 2007
Rising From The Ashes – Rainbow 1 Ranch  
Peppy Sol Anson
Rising From The Ashes – Rainbow 1 Ranch
By Marilyn E. Short
Like the mythical phoenix, Rainbow 1 Ranch rises from the ashes, time and time again. David and Susan Fuqua have raised Quarter Horses for 27 years and have lived through extreme highs and severe lows, but with faith, hope and good friends they persevere.

Rainbow 1 Ranch was a natural offshoot of Rocking One Ranches that belonged to Dave’s family. Between Susan’s family and Dave’s, they are both fourth generation ranchers. Dave recalls a saying his Grandfather used to tell him, “You can tell all there is to know about a man by the friends he keeps and the horse he rides.”  That says a lot about the “old rock” Texans” like Dave and Susan.

Susan & Dave started their combined operation in Yoakum, Texas.  Dave’s “day job” required a move so they bought raw land in Lockhart, Texas (123 acres with 200 lease acres) and started R1R from scratch. At that time, Susan was pregnant and together they built fences in the heat of the summer. In fact Susan was riding a horse less than12 hours before their daughter Nita was born…talk about old rock Texans!

One of the first major obstacles for R1R was a freak accident where Dave lost his leg.  A little mare was sold to the Fuqua’s as a “kid horse”.  The mare threw a bucking fit and Dave thought he could step off.  The mare lunged and bucked as Dave swung his leg over her tail and caught his ankle, literally kicking his foot off.

In July of 2004 R1R experienced another devastating event.  Susan and daughter, Nita walked out to the barn to work horses after the heat of the day and found 2 of their yearling colts dead in the pasture.  After checking the rest of yearlings they found the other 6 were standing or lying around, and knew they weren’t well at all.  Deadly blister beetles were found in their alfalfa. 

Good veterinarians certainly helped save the rest of R1R stock, but good friends pulled together quickly.  Friends helped treat horses, took samples from stock tanks, arranged for a backhoe, and raked up blister beetles.

“It’s the adversity in life that tests us, but always brings out the best in friends,” said Dave.

In 2004, Dave and Susan found 300-acres of raw land just outside of Stockdale. The temptation to have water available for irrigation of hay and alfalfa, no rocks, and the opportunity to fit another ranch into a show place prompted another “do-over”.  It took many months and long hard days, but they moved a hot walker, a 6-stall barn, approx 100 goats, two stallions, 20 brood mares and 25 years of accumulated junk in 2005…R1R was born again. The ranch has 3 barns with a total of 30 stalls, round pen, arena, coastal fields and a beautiful new house.

Some believe the Fuqua’s faith is being tested…they might be right.  Last year a careless motorist threw a cigarette butt out their vehicle window and almost 50 acres of hay were torched.  Luckily Susan and Dave had someone working a bulldozer on the property that day and he quickly cut a few strategic fire lanes and opened a few gates for the horses.  “We’re lucky we didn’t lose the whole kit & caboodle,” said Dave.  “All of the weanlings had a ball running free.”

The Fuqua’s collect their stallions for both A-I at the Ranch and for shipped semen and have a fully equipped breeding lab on the ranch. They will also collect, A-I on premises and ship semen for their customers.
Smooth Blue Snippy
Roan Yearling
Smooth Blue Snippy

R1R stands two Foundation bred stallions, Peppy Sol Anson and Smooth Blue Snippy.  Anson’s titles in the National Reining Horse Association are many. Anson is 88% NFQHA and is by Solanos Peppy San by Peppy San Badger and out of Too Tall Tess, NRHA World Champion Producer and AQHA Superior Producer.  Anson has sired many NRHA and NRCHA money earners, along with AQHA point earners.

“Anson is the coolest thing on four legs!” said Susan.  “His personality is so mellow but he still has fire in his belly. Last fall a friend was tuning him up and slid him 25 feet in keg shoes. He is still sound at 18 years old and there are rumors Anson & a one legged guy are going to team up for a local SHOT show.”

Smooth Blue Snippy, AKA “Boo” is an 89% FQHR Blue Roan stallion. Boo has been producing 90% roan foals, mostly blue or bay roan.  He was in training with Randy Holcomb for roping training and really doing well. Dave and Susan brought him home for breeding season and unfortunately, he broke a bone in his foot while he pawing while he was tied up.  Unfortunately the injury was severe enough to end Boo’s roping career. “We were afraid we would have to put him down at the time,” said Susan.  “On the ranch he runs and plays and doesn’t look lame, but we aren’t taking any chances.”

Like the mythical phoenix, Dave and Susan Fuqua of Rainbow 1 Ranch have a vision for the future and are an inspiration to the rest of us.  The Fuqua’s don’t know the word quit.  With enthusiasm and years of horse knowledge, R1R is a thriving Quarter Horse venture.

For more information you can contact Dave and Susan at (830) 996-1105 Ranch or (210) 218-4511 Cell or visit: www.rainbow1ranch.com.


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