Nellie Miller Wins 2017 WPRA World Champion Barrel Racer Title, NFR Aggregate Championship

Nellie Miller and Rafter W Minnie Reba made 10 clean runs at the 2017 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo to steal the 2017 Women's Professional Rodeo Association World Champion Barrel Racer title and the 2017 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo Aggregate Championship.

By Blanche Schaefer

NellieMiller Rd10 webNellie Miller and Rafter W Minnie Reba stayed clean in all 10 rounds to seal the 2017 WPRA World Champion Barrel Racer title and the NFR Aggregate Championship. Photo by Kenneth Springer. December 16, 2017 -- Las Vegas, Nevada -- Cottonwood, California, cowgirl Nellie Miller and her homegrown mare Rafter W Minnie Reba stormed into the Thomas & Mack Center arena, making 10 clean trips through the cloverleaf to earn the 2017 Women's Professional Rodeo Association World Champion Barrel Racer title as well as the 2017 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo Aggregate Championship. Miller and "Sister" ran a 13.85 in round 10 to finish out an aggregate of 137.32 on 10 runs, narrowly defeating Ivy Conrado and KN Fabs Gift Of Fame's 137.40, which placed second in the aggregate. Miller, Conrado and Lisa Lockhart on An Oakie With Cash ("Louie") were the only three cowgirls to stay clean all 10 rounds. All three barrel racers stayed on the same horses the entire NFR.

Miller entered the Finals ranked No. 3 in the world. It was her second NFR after a qualification in 2010 aboard Sister's half-brother "Blue Duck." Her $177,962 in 2017 NFR earnings skyrocketed her past former No. 1 cowgirl Tiany Schuster, who had held the No. 1 position since October 2016. Hailey Kinsel and DM Sissy Hayday (also dubbed "Sister") finished as reserve world champions after an impressive $189,385 in NFR earnings boosted Kinsel from her pre-Finals position of No. 5 in the world. Schuster finished the season at No. 3 in the world with $285,339 in earnings, bolstered by $34,962 in NFR earnings.

Miller's Sister is a 2008 blue roan mare by KS Cash N Fame and out of Miller's high school rodeo mount Espuela Roan by Blue Light Ike. Miller's father, Sam Williams, raised and trained the mare. Miller began riding Sister two years ago and has seen much success rodeoing on her, including a reserve placing at the 2017 Calgary Stampede. Sister was also voted the 2017 AQHA/PRCA Barrel Horse of the Year and the WPRA Horse With The Most Heart. For more on Miller and Sister's background, read their profile here.

Watch Nellie Miller's interview about her first world championship here: "2017 World Champion Barrel Racer Nellie Miller"

World Standings:
1, Nellie Miller, $308,498
2, Hailey Kinsel, $288,92
3, Tiany Schuster, $285,339
4, Amberleigh Moore, $240,806
5, Ivy Conrado, $232,521
6, Tillar Murray, $203,904
7, Lisa Lockhart, $203,550
8, Stevi Hillman, $199,619
9, Kassie Mowry, $189,047
10, Taci Bettis, $162,446
11, Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, $161,173
12, Kathy Grimes, $150,978
13, Sydni Blanchard, $144,516
14, Kellie Collier, $108,146
15, Kimmie Wall, $86,294

Final Aggregate Standings on 10 Runs: HaileyKinsel Rd10 webHailey Kinsel and the incredible DM Sissy Hayday finished the season at No. 2 in the world after a stellar showing at their first NFR, including breaking the arena record of 13.37 with a 13.11 to win round three and clocking a 13.17 to win round 10. Photo by Kenneth Springer.
1, Nellie Miller, 137.32, $67,269
2, Ivy Conrado, 137.40, $54,577
3, Lisa Lockhart, 138.12, $43,154
4, Tillar Murray, 142.89, $31,731
5, Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 144.01, $22,846
6, Hailey Kinsel, 144.95, $16,500
7, Kathy Grimes, 149.55, $11,423
8, Kellie Collier, 153.08, $6,346
9/10, Tiany Schuster, 154.36
9/10, Kassie Mowry, 154.36
11, Amberleigh Moore, 156.49
12, Sydni Blanchard, 164.97
13, Stevi Hillman, 176.05
14, Kimmie Wall, 177.92
15, Taci Bettis, 128.05* on nine runs

Round 10 Results:
1, Hailey Kinsel, 13.17, $26,231
2, Sydni Blanchard, 13.39, $27,031
3, Amberleigh Moore, 13.42, $15,654
4, Taci Bettis, 13.54, $11,000
5, Ivy Conrado, 13.60, $6,769
6, Lisa Lockhart, 13.76, $4,231
7, Nellie Miller, 13.85
8, Tiany Schuster, 13.92
9, Kathy Grimes, 13.97
10, Tillar Murray, 14.00
11, Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 14.08
12, Kellie Collier, 14.25
13, Stevi Hillman, 14.35
14, Kassie Mowry, 18.49*
15, Kimmie Wall, 21.83**

*denotes penalty

Total NFR Earnings:
1, Hailey Kinsel, $189,385
2, Nellie Miller, $177,962
3, Ivy Conrado, $154,340
4, Amberleigh Moore, $120,000
5, Tillar Murray, $117,885
6, Lisa Lockhart, $107,096
7, Kassie Mowry, $73,885
8, Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, $68,244
9, Taci Bettis, $65,423
10, Sydni Blanchard, $53,154
11, Kathy Grimes, $39,192
12, Tiany Schuster, $34,962
13, Kellie Collier, $24,808
14, Stevi Hillman, $13,667
15, Kimmie Wall, $10,000

Tags: WPRA, National Finals Rodeo , NFR, WNFR, WPRA World Champion, Wrangler National Finals Rodeo , Wrangler NFR, World Champion, Hailey Kinsel, DM Sissy Hayday, AQHA/WPRA Barrel Horse of the Year, Nellie Miller, , Rafter W Minnie Reba, Sister