History of Sunspot Revel


Sunspot Revel F-1904 

Appaloosa Heritage Articles

Charles O'Bryant III
456 Waynick Road
Reidsville, NC 27320


This is my tribute to the famous stallion Sunspot Revel produced by the Cannons. Sunspot Revel was an outstanding Appaloosa whose life I have had the fortunate opportunity to share through one of his own sons. My father's contact with Ralph Cannon 20 years ago resulted in the breeding of several of our mares to Sunspot Revel. The breeding of our mare Skip A Rue's Moon resulted in the birth of our stallion Sunspot Pete in April 1982. Correspondence with Ralph and Joyce Cannon and a visit to their home in Spruce Pine, North Carolina has allowed me to learn valuable information about the origins of the Sundance 500 International organization, Sun Appaloosas and Sunspot Revel that I think should be shared with Appaloosa lovers around the world.

...written by Charles O'Bryant III


Sunspot Revel Postcard

Sunspot Revel F-1904 was born in a puddle of water after a snow storm on Lookout Mountain, Colorado on May 16, 1957, sired by Revel Junior F-1728 and out of Rocking Chair Sun Dance F-587. In June 1957 the Cannons took Rocking Chair Sun Dance  and Sunspot Revel to the big Estes Park show of the Mountain and Plains Appaloosa Horse Club. The amateur Cannons did well for their first time and Rocking Chair Sun Dance received Reserve Champion Broodmare and their leopard colt placed fourth place. George Hatley registered the colt that day at the show, but when his registration papers came in the mail, it listed Sunspot Revel F18xx sired by Revel, his grandsire. The certificate was returned to Moscow for correction. When the new registration certificate came back, Sunspot Revel was registered F1904. The recent stud book had already gone to press ending with F1899. He was 3 years old when trainer Monte Foreman came to Lookout Mountain in 1960 and started his performance career.  Ralph Cannon began training and working with Sunspot Revel, but Sunspot Revel quickly required more expertise from a rider.  Six weeks later, in Jan 1961, Monte rode Sunspot in his first show and made him the first Appaloosa ever to win a ribbon in the all breed Western Pleasure event at the Denver National Western Stock Show. Sunspot Revel placed 3rd in the Men's Western Pleasure Class.  His most successful major regional show at Estes Park in 1961, he won a red ribbon at halter, 8 blue ribbons in performance and the Grand Champion Performance Horse trophy. 

TSunspot Revel at his first show with Monte on board and Ralph standing in fronthe photo with Ralph in front of Sunspot Revel and Monte on board is only one of few photos ever taken of Monte Foreman on Sunspot Revel.  With that photo, Ralph began the promotion of his Sundance F500 and Colorado Rangerbred stallion Sunspot Revel. The Sun Appaloosas program rapidly gained notoriety with Sunspot Revel's performances in the many western events and shows around Colorado. It also sparked Ralph's dream of an organization for Sundance F500 bloodline leopard breeders.

From 1961 to 1963, Ralph, along with Mike and Gary Foreman, traveled with Sunspot Revel to shows in Colorado, Idaho, Missouri, New Mexico, Nevada and Texas. Sunspot Revel was Grand Champion Performance Appaloosa of the Mountain & Plains Region in 1961 and Reserve Champion in 1963. The diversity of the Sundance F500 bloodline could be seen in Sunspot Revel's performance in Western Pleasure, Trail, Reining, Costume, Calf-Roping, Stake Race, Stump Race and Rope Race. At the Denver Western Stock Show, Sundance 500 bred Appaloosas won three of the first four ribbons-Sunspot Revel, his first son, Red Sun, and Patchy Jr's Mokena. Sunspot Revel also raced in 1961 and 1962 and helped establish Appaloosa racing in Colorado. Sunspot Revel had 5 wins in 10 starts during his 2 year racing career. 

Twelve photos were given to me by Ralph Cannon and the text below the photos are his descriptions.  The last black and white photo of Sunspot Revel is from Wayne Wyant's personal collection.  Ralph Cannon and Wayne Wyant were the two original founders of the Sundance 500 Breeders organization which was conceived in 1963-1964.

Sunspot Revel at 2 months old in 1957, with dam Rocking Chair Sun Dance and Susan Cannon Sunspot Revel F-1904 in pasture at 3 months with 17 year old Susan Cannon Sunspot Revel on the magazine cover of Rocky Mountain Horseman as a 2 year old in 1959, with Mrs. Monte Montana, Jr. and an Australian Shepherd puppy
Sunspot Revel photograph by professional horse photographer Guizetti in the 1960's Sunspot Revel at 3 years old in November 1960 ready to start training with Trainer Monte Foreman Sunspot Revel in the fall of 1961 in a pasture on Lookout Mountain in the Rockies overlooking Denver and Golden Colorado
Mike Foreman riding Sunspot Revel in Trail Class for the last time in 1963, in the World Championships at Las Vegas, Nevada Sunspot Revel and Monte's son Mike July 1961 had just won 7 blue ribbons in performance, a 2nd place red ribbon at halter, and Grand Champion Performance Horse at the prestigious Estes Park Appaloosa Show of the Mountain & Plains AHC.  Sunspot Revel finished the year as Grand Champion Performance Horse of the Mountain & Plains AHC, so he went to the World Championships at Sedalia, MO that fall where he had a chance to meet his sire Revel Jr. Monte Foreman on Sunspot Revel in January 1961 just after they had won 3rd in Colorado Men's Western Pleasure at the Denver National Western Stock Show.  The first time an Appaloosa had ever placed in this event.  Two years later Appaloosas won 3 of 5 ribbons in this event, Sunspot Revel, his first son Red Sun and another Appaloosa of Sundance breeding.
Sunspot Revel and Mike Foreman in rough pasture on the Monte Foreman Ranch near Elbert, Colorado in 1962.  This season Gary Foreman did the showing, started Sunspot Revel in racing, and was both his race trainer and his jockey, whenever a licensed jockey was not required at Colorado 'brush tracks'. Sunspot Revel running free with his band of mares in his 300-acre pasture on Rocky Cliff Ranch near Elizabeth, Colorado in 1968 Ralph & Sunspot Revel
Joyce Cannon & Sunspot Revel - 1961 Ralph Cannon & Sunspot Revel - Fort Worth Nationals 1961 Starlight III & Joyce Cannon 1961
Joyce Cannon & Sunspot Revel
Ralph Cannon & Sunspot Revel
Fort Worth Nationals - 1961
Starlight III & Joyce Cannon

The following is the photo of Sunspot Revel used for most Sundance 500 Breeders Association ads published in the Appaloosa News

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