Rodeo Barrel Racing Tips : How to Look for a Barrel Racing Horse
Articles Blog

Rodeo Barrel Racing Tips : How to Look for a Barrel Racing Horse

August 18, 2019


Hi, I’m Holly Heidemann and today on behalf
of Expert Village we’re going to talk about what to look for in a barrel horse, not only
confirmation, but attitude and some other things that sometimes take you a little longer
to find out then what you went, when you first meet your ride. This is Bailey and he is an
eight year old quarter horse. He does not by any means have perfect confirmation, but
he has a lot of things that I do look for in a barrel horse. He is my current barrel
horse that I’m currently competing on. The biggest thing that is his detriment is when
looking at this horse he has a very long head. However, as we’ll talk about there are some
conformational faults that I will overlook if the horse is a performer. This horse is
one that I raised and did not sell because of his long head and it turned out very good
for me because he’s been an excellent barrel horse. If you look at Bailey’s neck, it’s
rather short and you’ll notice that standing here his head is rather high – also a fault,
but one that I can use some different equipment to kind of overcome and so you’ll see that
when we get to the equipment portion. What I do with a horse that has a confirmation
fault like that to kind of make up for that in a way. What he does have that’s excellent
is he has nice, nice sloping shoulder, he has very short cannon bones which is the area
from the knee to the ankle, he has really a nice slope to his pastern. If you look at
his back, it’s very short on top; his underline is very long underneath, that makes for a
strong back and he can really get with it and run and stretch out because of how long
he is underneath. We’ll go around to the back of Bailey and take a look at his back end.
One of his other faults, he does fidget a little (laughing). But if you look at his
back end, I want you to notice how if you look at his hip and how it flows to his tail
he has a really nice low tail set. And what that usually goes along with is a really long
line down his buttocks, down this way, into his hock. I, I like a really long line to
there. Which means his hocks are going to be set very close to the ground. What that
does is it allows him to power out of his turns, it makes it much easier for him to
get down and in the ground, and to be able to push out of a turn. If he were to have
a flatter behind up here and a tail set higher, it’s more like a shelf. Those kind of horses
usually have a harder time getting down in the ground for there turns. They have a tendency
to, to not be able to really gather before they start to run toward the next barrel which
we’ll talk about in our lessons in a few moments. So those are the things that Bailey has that
are very, very good. His faults we’re going to overcome because one thing that Bailey
has that goes with what I look for in a barrel horse is an excellent disposition. He is very
fidgety, which a lot of barrel horses are, they have to have an, a fire to have a desire
to run. What he does have though that’s very good is he’s extremely focused. When he gets
in the arena he’s very focused on his job and horses that are great barrel horses really
love to do it. If you come by a horse that is, is not enjoying their job – they’re not
going to be very good at it. So that’s really the number one thing I look for in a barrel
horse beyond confirmation is they have to have the desire to do this job. You can tell
that pretty soon after you start to work them. So Bailey is an excellent prospect, I have
some that are better conformed, but like I said his disposition and attitude and, and
his desire to do this job really fills in for some of his faults.

Only registered users can comment.

  1. You reading it off a paper.. Kinda makes it seem like ya don't know what your talkin about… If someone was tryin to sell me a horse I'd be scepticual if they started readin to me off a paper

  2. @Shazamm17 i agree. i used one on my barrel mare and she spooked and it rubbed off her hair. it made me so mad! so i switched to a nylon one, or her leather one. plus it takes more time doing it up. hahah.

  3. i have a reg AQHA mare she is out of Peppy sanbadger she just turned 3 has not filled out and her withers have not caught up to her hind end she is a late bloomer should mature at 14.2-14.3 prob a pony her whole family is filled with bulldog looking QHs im 5 ft 4 and about 150lbs i was told im to big for her. she runs the barrels etc just fine she should fill out soon am i to big for her?

  4. i also raised my barrel horse well we were raised together when my dad got her for me she was a yearling and i was three and she really loves to run the barrels and is bread to barrel race and run

  5. She is right. I have a few barrel horses. Some love it and some hate it. For example, JR hates barrel racing. We always place low when I ride him. Dizzy however loves running. I place very high with her. This year we actually won at my home town rodeo that had 33 other barrel racers.

  6. @Barrelracer4life8 -No, you are not at all too big for her. My stepdad is 5'8 220lbs and his horse is a 14.1 hand quarter horse mare. (Pony size!) &she is just fine carrying his weight. She is pretty stocky (bulldog) built too. Horses are very strong , don't worry about it 馃檪

  7. that's the #1 thing to succeed in any discipline…. the horse's desire to excel and succeed … a horse that is "on your side" is the only horse to ride… if he's not with you , then he needs to find something else to do… there is another " job" out there waiting for him that he can excel at …. you can't force a horse to become a champion in any discipline

  8. Questions- are Arabians good barrel racing horses, is it good to have long legged ones? What is good preperation before a race.like massage for horse or excerises what's best for hoof tack?

  9. Theres different ways to find a good barrel horse thats talking about the pros who all dont give horsemanship like her shes all about showing she prob dont give horsemanship

  10. I'm just now starting up from barrel racing after 2 years, My horse got put down after she broke her leg. We did a lot of barrel racing, and jumps. I need some help with getting back into barrel racing. Please help!!! Email me at [email protected] with some tips. THANKS!!!

  11. I know what she means when she discussed Bailey's hip, but I really do wish that she had pushed him back into the light. Its hard to see the slope of his hip in the shade. Love the videos though!

  12. is it possible to barrel race a T.W. im training one to ride bareback and i want to see what else i can do with her..

  13. She used to be a halter show, so her neck and sloping shoulders are beautiful. She has huge muscles, and a short strong back. Low tail, and short cannon bones. 10 year old Ouarter mare. Can't wait till I get to compete with her 馃檪

  14. I am a younger rider, (very experienced though) and I love your tips already. I'm just starting pole bending or barrels. This will be so fun! Thanks for your lovely videos!

  15. my horse may not meet all the expectations but I will never ever replace her. she may be stubborn and sassy but I love her great vid. but I'm still gonna barrel race her haha XD

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *