CBRA Barriere Barrel Bash coming to the North Thompson Agriplex

Officials say they expect over 750 entries at the three day event in Barriere, B.C.

The Canadian Barrel Racing Association (CBRA) say this year their spring fling will be at the North Thompson Agriplex in Barriere, B.C., May 9 – 11, and their finals for the season will be in Chilliwack, B.C., on Sept. 25 – 28.

“Both events will be drawing competitors from across Western Canada and North Western USA,” says a CBRA rep. “As these are multi-day events, the competitors and their families will be spending several days in those communities and will have ample opportunity to visit the shops in the area.

“We’ve hosted several successful events of this size over the past 18 years and expect over 750 entries over the three days of each event.”

The closing date for contestant entries in the Barriere event is April 25 to avoid late fees, and it is expected that a number of area and North Thompson Valley riders will be competing for over $2,500 in added purses.  There will also be a saddle given away to one of the average division winners.

Prizes will be awarded on an average over two days (Saturday and Sunday) for the Open, Youth, Senior and Novice. All Peewee contestants will receive awards.  Awards will be issued half-an-hour after the race.

For anyone interested in watching the races, here is the posted schedule of events:

* On Friday, May 9, SLACK will start at 5 p.m., and the Open race will directly follow.

* On Saturday, May 10, races will start at 9 a.m., with Peewee’s, Open, Youth, Senior, Novice, and Poles.

* Sunday, May 11, races will get underway at 8 a.m., with Peewee’s, Open, Youth, Senior, Novice, and Poles.

Anyone interested in entering, or finding out more about the CBRA, should go to:  www. http://canadianbarrelracing.com

What is barrel racing?

In barrel racing, the fastest time will win. It is not judged under any subjective points of view, only the clock. Barrel racers in competition must pay attention to detail while maneuvering at high speeds.

The standard barrel racing patterns call for a precise distance between the start line and the first barrel, from the first to the second barrel, and from the second to the third barrel. The pattern from every point of the cloverleaf will have a precisely measured distance from one point to the next.

Precise control is required to win. The rider is allowed to choose either the right or left barrel as their first barrel but must complete the correct pattern, allowing for turn changes depending on whether they are on the right or left lead. Running past a barrel and off the pattern will result in a “no time” score and disqualification. If a barrel racer or her horse hits a barrel and knocks it over there is a time penalty of five seconds, which usually will result in a time too slow to win.

Barrel-racing horses not only need to be fast; but strong, agile and intelligent as well. The strength and agility are needed to maneuver the course in as little distance as possible. A horse that is able to “hug the barrels” as well as maneuver the course quickly and accurately follow commands, will be a horse with consistently low times.