March 8, 2020 — Arlington, Texas — Stevi Hillman and Cuatro Fame claimed RFD-TV’s The American barrel racing championship for $100,000.
Hillman and “Truck” earned their bid to The American via a top 10 finish in the 2019 Women’s Professional Rodeo Association. This year is Hillman’s third trip to The American but first time to qualify for the Final Four, as well as the first year she called on her main mount Truck in AT&T Stadium.
Hillman says that’s due in part to the change in arena and pattern setup with the addition of an alleyway.
“He’s a very special horse. I’ve wanted to run him here every year I’ve been here, but the alley situation I haven’t been able to run him, because he takes a minute to stop,” Hillman said. “I was so grateful to see the alley.”
She adds that the offset pattern was a minor challenge but nothing she or Truck hadn’t tackled before.
“Rodeo brings challenge no matter where we’re at. We run into a lot of challenges rodeoing and crooked patterns, so to me it was just I get to run my rodeo horse and go in there and he’s going to find a barrel,” Hillman said. “I really liked that we had an alley instead of a quick stop, so I was thankful for that.”
Hillman has more than $907,900 in Equi-Stat reported lifetime earnings and just added $100,000 with The American championship. Truck has led Hillman to four National Finals Rodeo qualifications and earned more than $383,263 in Equi-Stat reported lifetime earnings. Hillman made the tough decision to leave the 2007 bay gelding at home for the 2019 NFR giving him a rest from competition. Hillman said that break set him up for the win at AT&T Stadium.
“Last year I tried to pick and choose where to run him. I’ve had him for about six years now and he’s been my constant. He’s made the NFR four years in a row now. It’s Truck’s world, we just live in it, so keeping him happy is our whole goal,” Hillman said with a chuckle. “I’m so thankful for Jason and Melissa Mouton for allowing me to be his jockey and part own him.”
The Weatherford, Texas, cowgirl came into The American on Saturday for the first round and ran a 15.504 to finish second and advance to the Round of Eight on Sunday. Truck was dialed in and never made a false move on the unorthodox pattern in the Round of Eight. He turned in a 15.457 to top the round and take the lead in the aggregate with a 30.961, which punched Hillman’s ticket to the Final Four. With high stakes in the Final Four, Hillman and Truck didn’t take a safe approach. They came into the arena gunning for the win and clocked a 15.405 for the championship.
Hillman says the win is special for many reasons, but her main mount is a major reason to be thankful.
“God has us on this crazy journey, and it’s been fun—it’s been a lot of ups and downs—but it’s been worth it for sure,” Hillman said.
Results from the long round of 20 on March 7 can be found here.
Results from all events can be found here.
Recap and results from The Semifinals can be found here.
RFD-TV’S THE AMERICAN RESULTS
- Stevi Hillman, Cuatro Fame, 15.405, $100,000
- Dona Kay Rule, High Valor, 15.472, $25,000
- Wenda Johnson, Macgyver Moonflash, 15.763
- Kassie Mowry, Epic Guy, 16.344
Final Four Qualifiers—Aggregate
Round of Eight time, aggregate on two
- Stevi Hillman, Cuatro Fame, 15.457, 30.961
- Wenda Johnson, Macgyver Moonflash, 15.744, 31.114
- Dona Kay Rule, High Valor, 15.711, 31.267
- Kassie Mowry, Epic Guy, 15.548, 31.308
Round of Eight Results
Round of Eight time, aggregate on two
- Stevi Hillman, Cuatro Fame, 15.457
- Kassie Mowry, Epic Guy, 15.548
- Emily Miller, Namgis D 33, 15.708, 31.351
- Dona Kay Rule, High Valor, 15.711
- Haley Wolfe, Iron Eyes Rio Bravo, 15.734, 31.626
- Wenda Johnson, Macgyver Moonflash, 15.744
- Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, Kisskiss Bangbang, 15.745, 31.390
- Sabra O’Quinn, Slicks Lil Amigo, 16.012, 31.878