Alex Lang

Alex Lang

On Thursday, Jan. 26 contestants were welcomed with a kick-off race where 76 entries paid the modest $20 entry fee to get a run in and warm up for weekend action. On Friday, the contestants numbered 227, followed by 628 on Saturday and 567 on Sunday. A stick horse race for the kids was held on Sunday with Spring Pennington and Bailey Killingsworth taking home trophy buckles in the 2-4 age group race. Biloxi Shultz and Dalton Nicholas poured on the speed to win buckles for the 5-7 age group. Not only was each contestant awarded a Jurassic Classic shirt and coloring book, but spectators were treated to some good, wholesome family fun in the process.

When the action turned to the adults, several big-name veteran barrel racers stole center stage. Martha Wright took top honors on Thursday night with a 14.787 aboard Famous Lil Dasher.

Jana Bean stopped in on Friday’s race before heading to the famed Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo to run later that evening. Bean’s winning time on Friday of 14.993 was the only 14-second run of the night and was worth $576. Bean rode “Easy” to the win, edging Judi Reed and Captain Bully’s 16.008 in second.

Stevi Hillman took the spotlight on Saturday night, besting 627 other barrel racers with one of two 14’s run during the course of the day. Hillman’s 14.722 aboard Ima Royal Design was posted when she ran at draw number 240 (last on the ground), and just edged Jamie Steiner and “Dirty,” who finished a close second on Saturday with a 14.987. Hillman banked $1,059 for the win. The 2D on Saturday went to Gin Berry aboard Parrot Fame, the 3D to Caye Caves aboard Sandia Dashe, the 4D to Teresa McClendon on Bailey Doc Malbec and the 5D to Denise Blackwell on Plainman. All “D” winners received custom trophy buckles and other prizes courtesy of Classic Equine.

Sunday’s event saw a group of high school girls race to top placings in the 1D. Alex Lang ran a 14.918 on Casino Bambino followed by Jordan Robinson of Oklahoma running a 14.949 on This Blondes Loaded for 2nd in the 1D. First place on Sunday paid $962. Sierra Stoney took the 2D buckle home on Perks Master Hand along with $738. 3D honors, a beautiful trophy buckle and $641 went to Melissa Rawlings on Peanut with a 15.918. Kellie Weaver won the 4D on Sunday and Mica Rucker’s 16.924 second-run took home $321 and the 5D buckle.

Stevi Hillman

Stevi Hillman

Saddle winners were drawn from all money winners from the Saturday and Sunday races.  The 5D saddle winner was drawn first, with Jill Yates taking home a beautiful Cowboy Classic saddle. The 4D saddle winner was Haley Jochims, the 3D saddle went to Debbie O’Neill, Megan Reichert took home the 2D saddle, and the 1D saddle went home with Carley Richardson.

No one in attendance will soon forget the unfortunate loss experienced on Sunday by barrel racer Karen Wyatt from Salado, Texas, whose horse Dashton, 15, had to be euthanized. Wyatt was awarded the Julie Swanson Memorial Buckle to honor the memory of the great barrel racer who recently lost her battle with lymphoma. A more gracious lady cannot be found than Wyatt, who even in her time of pain expressed her thanks to those who helped her through the situation.


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