Esters Little Klu
Esters Little Klu
Dynamite comes in small packages. Esters Little Klu was dynamite.
“She wasn’t real big, but she was a good-looking mare,” says Robert Driggers of Anthony, New Mexico. “But it wasn’t Quarter Horse conformation or Thoroughbred conformation. You could look right at her, and if somebody told you she was a Thoroughbred, you’d believe it. And if somebody told you, well, that’s a Quarter Horse, you’d believe it.”
She was a Thoroughbred. A daughter of the Olympia stallion Big Klu, Esters Little Klu was bred by Dan L. Williams and foaled April 16, 1968, out of the Eternal Reward mare Little Ester.
Bred to 12 different stallions, Esters Little Klu produced 15 American Quarter Horse foals that earned $230,023 on the track. One of her best was the 1973 Bunny Bid mare Ester’s Bunny. Bunny produced the Jet Creek mare Splashing Bunny, the dam of Splashing Fortune. Bred to Stoli, Splashing Fortune produced Stolis Fortune, the dam of the richest Quarter Horse in history, Ochoa, who was foaled in 2009 and went on to earn $2,781,365 on the track.
Robert and Del Rae Driggers bought the gray mare in foal to Easy Toro at the 1985 Heritage Place Fall Mixed Sale from E.L. Weber of Anadarko, Oklahoma for $6,000.
“We had seen some of her colts run, and we were familiar with one of her daughters that had produced runners,” Robert says. “They were all running in Oklahoma, very early in the year as 2-year-olds, and they all were really fast. She had a few Thoroughbred foals, too, but they weren’t big-time horses, no black-type horses, and none of them really produced anything.”
Others noticed Esters Little Klu.
“You know how you just get the feeling about something?” asks Ben Hudson of Track Magazine. “That was her. There wasn’t anything particularly outstanding about her, she was no great looker or anything, but I just had the feeling that she was the real deal”
Esters Little Klu foaled champions Feature Mr Bojangle, Six To Five, Jumping Tac Flash, Splash Bac, and Carters Cartel.
In addition, other major winners that trace to the Hall of Fame mare include Gun Battle, full siblings Tac It Like A Man and Flash First, and Major Rime.
"None of this would have happened had I bought Esters Little Klu,” Ben admits. “Robert Driggers, a true horseman, bought her. Her family gave him another graded stakes winner in 2018.”
Esters Little Klu died in June 1995. “Esters Little Klu,” says Ben, himself an American Quarter Horse Hall of Famer, “most definitely belongs in the Hall of Fame.” She was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 2020.
Biography updated as of August 2021.