A popular cowgirl sport is the barrel race. This rodeo event is where the horse and rider attempt to complete a clover leaf pattern around set barrels in the fastest time. the barrel race combines the horse's athletic ability and the horsemanship skills of a rider in order to safely and successfully maneuver a horse through the pattern.
Though both cowboys and cowgirls compete at the youth level, and men compete in some amateur venues, in collegiate and professional ranks, it is primarily a rodeo event for cowgirls.
In the 1900's when the women began to compete in the rodeo's they excelled at horse racing, trick riding and relay. Their weight was an advantage and, due to their gentler nature, the females seemed to have a closer kinship with the horses.
Gail Hughbanks Woerner wrote an in depth history of barrel racing. Her history begins with Faye Blackstone, a trick rider in the 1930's. Read the story below.......
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