Although barrel racing may look less harrowing than some other rodeo events, it certainly is not for the fainthearted. The horsemanship skills and competitive drive in this fast and furious event make it a crowd favorite.
In barrel racing, the contestant and her horse enters the arena at full speed. As they begin the course the horse and rider trigger an electronic eye that starts the clock. The racer rides a cloverleaf pattern around three barrels positioned in the arena, and then sprinting back out, trips the eye and stops the clock as she leaves.
The contestant can touch or even move the barrels but receives a five-second penalty for each barrel that is overturned.