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What Qualities Do WPRA Cowgirls Look For In Barrel Horses?

Ivy Conrado-Saebens, Ivy Hurst, Jackie Ganter, Lisa Lockhart, Nellie Williams-Miller, and Shali Lord all had one trait in common...

December 27, 2019

Sally Rodeo Live interviewed some of the top WPRA cowgirls to ask them what qualities they look for in barrel horse prospects. Ivy Conrado-Saebens, Ivy Hurst, Jackie Ganter, Lisa Lockhart, Nellie Williams-Miller, and Shali Lord all had one trait in common.

Check out what these cowgirls had to say below…

Sally Rodeo Live: “When shopping, what areas of conformation turn you off? What points of conformation do your prospects absolutely must have?”

Ivy Conrado-Saebens. Photo courtesy Bull Stock Media.

Ivy Conrado-Saebens: “Conformation plays a big role in longevity but not in winning. It’s the size of the heart when it comes to rodeo. Now if i’m buying for resale that’s a different story.”

Ivy Hurst. Photo courtesy of ThisIsReno.

Ivy Hurst: “I do love good conformation! But I agree with all the other girls. It’s the size of the heart! You just have to feel it! It’s not something you can see. I like a horse with a lot of forward motion and not a lot of “up and down” when the travel.”

Jackie Ganter. Photo by Kenneth Springer.

Jackie Ganter: “I like big, stout horses, I feel like I ride them better than little horses. I think you can nit pick conformation all day long but I’ve seen a lot of outstanding barrel horses of all shapes and sizes but I’ve never seen a great one that lacked heart and some attitude! If you have a horse that’s determined to be a winner their build probably isn’t going to stop them.”

Lisa Lockhart. Photo by Billie-Jean Duff.

Lisa Lockhart: “I’ve ridden various kinds of horses, all having different conformation, size, etc. Of course it’s ideal to have good conformation, but more than anything a horses heart and desire to please along with God gifted athletic ability are true game changers!”

Nellie Williams-Miller. Photo by Billie-Jean Duff.

Nellie Williams-Miller: “The first thing I notice when I walk up to a horse is their eye.  Conformation is important but I think a lot of things can be overlooked if the horse has a good willing attitude.”

Shali Lord. Photo by Greg Westfall, from WPRA.

Shali Lord: “I think you can look for great confirmation and papers but they have to have a big heart and a desire to be a barrel horse.”

When it comes down to it, heart makes a champion. For more rodeo news and stories with cowgirls, check out Sally Rodeo Live on Facebook and Instagram.

Meet the barrel horses owned by Jackie Ganter! Click here.

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