Behind-the-scenes at the Calgary Stampede

The recently concluded 100th Calgary Stampede, with its invitational, tournament-style format, featured the top five 2011 Canadian barrel racers, the top 10 World contenders and five wild card picks. The 20 athletes are divided into two four-day pools where they compete for a daily $17,500 purse per event.

The top four money winners in each pool advance to Showdown Sunday. The remaining six competitors in both pools have one more chance to qualify for the Sunday Round of 10 by competing on Wild Card Saturday – the top two in each event from this round join the previously declared eight contestants for Sunday’s Showdown. This year, the 100th Anniversary of the Calgary Stampede, rodeo prize money topped the $2 million mark with over half that money awarded on the final Sunday, termed Rodeo’s Richest Afternoon.

Sunday is essentially a one shot, go-for-broke performance with winners taking home the Calgary Stampede Championship, a beautiful bronze commemorating the victory and $100,000.

Don’t miss the September issue of Barrel Horse News where you can read featured coverage of Sue Smith and Real Claim To Fame’s Calgary Stampede barrel racing victory. Until then, enjoy a sneak peek behind the scenes!

Britany Fleck and Rootie prepare to make their run during Pool A competition.













Pool A competitors Jane Melby, Joleen Seitz and Traci MacDonald.











Benette Barrington Little and Lisa Lockhart.












Molly Powell and Lauren Byrne.










Pool B barrel racers.









Lee Ann Rust and Molly Powell.
























Lee Ann Rust and Molly Powell.