1. Where did you learn to ride? How long have you been riding? What was your first horse?
When I was eight years old I joined the local 4-H club on a pony my parents had bought for me. Through 4-H, I had the opportunity to explore several disciplines and expand my horsemanship skills. I rode in both Western and English events.
2. When and how did you become interested in barrel racing? Did you have a teacher?
As a teenager I became more focused on the speed events, joined High School rodeo, competed in the local gymkhanas and bought my amateur rodeo cards in Manitoba and Saskatchewan. I have had several teachers over the years too numerous to mention them all; a couple that have been very influential are Paddy White and Judy Myllymaki. I am a book and video enthusiast; I have gained lots of knowledge from the books and videos produced by successful barrel racers.
3. How long have you been competing?
Since my early teens.
4. Tell us about your horse... name, stable name, how old, big, breeding, colour, sex, where your horse came from, training background, how long you've owned him etc...
My horse Chics Easy Bug, aka Aero, is a 15.3HH black gelding. I bought him as a three year old from Jodi Hart. At five this was his first year of competition, he competed at three futurities, ten rodeos and several jackpots. He is by Fast Moon Chic out of Bare Necessities by Bugs Alive in 75. Aero has been a very willing horse to work with, he is easy going and very trainable, barrel racing has come natural to him.
5. What other horses do you have on the go? Young prospects?
I have a 12 year old mare that has been competitive in the rodeo arena. I qualified for the CFR in 2006 on her.
As for young horses, I have two three year olds, a Fast Moon Chic gelding and a Millionaire Playboy x Bare Necessities by Bugs Alive in 75 mare. Also, two Major Bonanza two year olds and an Avid Dash/Blushing Bug yearling.
6. What other things occupy your time? School? Work? Hobbies? Family?
I keep pretty busy between working full time as a Financial Planner for Cypress Credit Union in Maple Creek, rodeoing and riding the young horses.
7. What are your future plans & goals?
I plan to continue to compete at the CPRA level, working towards another CFR qualification. Balancing this with the young horses I plan to train and futurity and derby in the future.
8. What do you consider the biggest challenges and benefits of barrel racing?
In Canada barrel racing has grown significantly over the last several years, we have more opportunity now with bigger jackpots, numerous futurities and traditional rodeo events. Barrel racing is one sport that can easily turn into a life long passion; you are not limited by age or ability as to when you can start or how long you can continue to compete. As with any sport there will be challenges, each challenge in some way can present an opportunity.
9. Do you have a favorite barrel racer that you admire? Tell us why.
I have admiration for barrel racers who can achieve success on numerous horses in different venues. Barrel racers with strong programs and solid horsemanship skills top my favorites. Among the many are Debbie Renger, Charmayne James & Sherry Cervi.
Any other comments you'd like to add.
I would like to thank Sandy Ridge Stallion Station for offering this great incentive program. Their breeding program has and will continue to have a positive influence on barrel racing.