What is a Barrel Race?
A barrel race is simply a timed race in which racers and their horses make a cloverleaf pattern around 3 barrels placed in the arena. There are a few variations in the distance between the barrels depending on the type of the barrel race regulations being followed, The usual distances between barrels are 90ft between barrel 1 and barrel 2 and 105ft between 1 and 3 and the same between 2 and 3 established by the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association and National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association.
Off to a quick start!
Competitive Barrel Racing originally began in Texas as a rodeo event for women while men roped or rode bulls and brocs. The barrel race was an event designed to demonstrate the relationship between rider and horse as the results were determined by the rider’s outfit and skill to maneuver the horse around the designated pattern, but with the development of the WPRA in 1948, by 1949 the barrel race would soon change gears to be all about speed as it became a timed racing event. Nowadays barrel racing is a staple in the rodeo community and has many jackpot events which allows riders of all ages, genders and professions to participate!