Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Chasin a Dream

"Chasin A Dream"

I remember being a kid at a camp where you got your own horse for the summer called Rawhide Ranch. We were all city kids who just loved horses! We had gymkhana days and rodeo days where we go to show off our riding and horses abilities. I loved racing those barrels. So when the opportunity presented itself for me to do a linocut of a barrel racer I was "chomping on the bit."
So here she is! My Rodeo Queen of the Barrels.

I loved doing this print and my collectors seem to love it too! Order yours today at


Barrel Racing originally developed as an event for women. While the men roped or rode bulls and broncos, women barrel raced. The exact dates and details about its developments are currently not officially known. However, it is believed that Barrel Racing first came to light in Texas. In 1948 a group of women from Texas looking for a home for themselves in the sport of rodeo decided to form an organization called the WPRA. It was initially called the GRA- girls rodeo Association. There were only 74 members with only 60 approved tour events. This was the first rodeo association developed exclusively for women. In 1981 the GRA officially became the WPRA.

A Modern Event

Barrel Racing is a timed Rodeo Event. The fastest time is what matters most. Cowgirls compete in an arena against one another as well as the clock. Barrel Racing requires extreme cooperation between horse and rider.

For the event, the arena is cleared and 3 barrels are placed in marked locations at specific distances. The riders enter the arena at full speed to quickly round each barrel in a cloverleaf pattern and exiting where they entered. A 5 second penalty time is added for knocking over a barrel. Ripping through the arena and the course leaving every barrel standing is a Barrel racers goal.

A stopwatch or electronic eye is generally used to time for accuracy and equality to all contestants. The time is registered down to a hundredth of a second. Generally a winning time is 13-14 seconds! But varies on the size of the arena. The riders time depends on several factors. The horses physical and mental condition, the rider's horsemanship abilities, and the quality of the ground/footing of the arena (the depth, content-sand/dirt/stone, evenness etc.).

Thrilling to watch, cheer and participate in!
Thanks for reading