The Breeders Elite Incentive Sweepstakes Futurity and Derby Race kicked off its second annual event at The Cooperators Agrim Centre in Rimbey, Alberta, Canada, from August 6-7. The Breeders Elite Incentive was founded by Christine Drisner and Helen Nowosad with the goal of broadening opportunities for owners of Canadian horses to increase their earnings. The partnership expanded to include a third member, Colin Balan, before the running of the first event in 2021.
“My friend Helen and I were talking about the barrel horse industry in Canada. We knew it could be better, and we wanted to see more opportunities for breeders and owners to increase the dollar value behind their Canadian horses,” Drisner explained. “We know we have some really nice horses in our country, but they haven’t had the opportunity to run for the same kind of money as the horses in the United States at races like the Pink Buckle.”
Drisner says in addition to offering Canadian horses the chance to run for a larger payout, she and Nowosad wanted to recognize the importance of the role that mare owners play within the industry.
“Most incentive programs are based around the stallions, and we wanted to create something different — we wanted to recognize the mare owners and reward breeders as a whole package,” Drisner said.
The Breeders Elite Incentive enrolls a breeder’s program in its entirety, covering all of the mares and any stallions a breeder may own. Stallion ownership is not required for incentive enrollment. Nominations are due in the same year the incentivized money is paid out.
Breeders Elite Incentive Futurity Sweepstakes Champion Robyn Hoover and Perks Of Crime
Robyn Hoover turned in a 14.811 aboard 2017 mare Perks Of Crime to win the Breeders Elite Incentive Futurity Sweepstakes, earning $24,666. Hoover, who purchased “Rumour” as a 3-year-old from her parents, says she knew the young mare was talented almost immediately.
“She was easy to pattern from the very beginning, and she took to the barrels naturally,” Hoover said. “I sold the 3-year-old I had at the time to buy her, because I had a feeling she was going to be good. She was so smooth — everywhere we went, she took everything on so easily.”
In addition to her natural abilities, Hoover says Rumour excels because of the amount of try she brings to every run.
“She really has a heart for the sport,” Hoover said. “If I make a mistake, she tries that much harder to make up for it. She just loves it so much.”
Rumour’s talent, try and ability to take on whatever is thrown at her in stride came in clutch for Hoover during Sunday’s Futurity Sweepstakes.
“I wasn’t able to be at the event Saturday, so we didn’t get to make a competition run until the actual Breeders Elite Incentive Sweepstakes on Sunday,” Hoover said. “Thankfully, my mom knows how I like Rumour to work, and she was able to exhibition her for me. I felt confident she would run well in there, and she didn’t let me down.”
Hoover says she’s still in disbelief after her win.
“It didn’t really hit me at all until about a week after the run — it was such a surreal feeling, and I’m still processing,” Hoover said with a laugh. “There were a lot of tough horses. I feel really grateful to have brought the win home.”
Hoover thanks her parents, Dean and Jackie Hoover, her aunt and uncle at Woody’s Custom Saddles, Milt Rigetti Farms and Sky’s the Limit Performance Horses, all breeders who are supporting The Breeders Elite Incentive, and founders of The Breeders Elite Incentive.
The Breeders Elite Incentive Futurity Sweepstakes Divisional Results
1D—Robyn Hoover on Perks Of Crime, 14.811, $24,666
2D—Christine Prisoner on The Legendary Iceman, 15.537, $6,166
The Breeders Elite Incentive Derby Sweepstakes Divisional Results
1D—Jalaine Henry on Frenchs Lil Lady, 14.772, $11,551
2D—Dawnette Rolling on Shesa Red Wolf, 15.475, $2888
For complete results, visit facebook.com/thebreederselite.
For more information on the Breeders Elite Incentive, visit thebreederselite.com.