Sixteen cowgirls competed in the Southwest Barrel Racing Association event Saturday at the Montezuma County Fair.
Organizers said the rain kept more riders from attending, but when the races began the rain had stopped.
The wet arena grounds were groomed between runs, which created fast conditions, competitors said.
Barrel racing is a straightforward sport, said SWBRA director Lacy Joe Barnes. Racers are timed to go around three barrels in a cloverleaf pattern, and the fastest times win cash prizes.
There is an overall winner and three time-added brackets to provide opportunity for riders to win money and points.
Charlee Karsten, 11, of Bears Ears, Utah, won first place with the fastest overall time of 15.925 seconds on her horse Cruise Control. She won $189 in the open division and also won the youth division, which earned her $55.
“It’s all about working with your horse and trusting your horse, then it just depends on whether everything goes right,” said Karsten. “I’ve been barrel racing my whole life.”
In the 2D category, Becky Short was first with 16.526 seconds, earning $162.
In the 3D category, Terye Penrod was first 16.953 seconds, earning $108. In the 4D category, Katie Taylor was first with 18.182 seconds, earning $81.
SWBRA puts on about 30 races per year in the Four Corners. This is its third year at the Montezuma County Fair. For more information, check out their Facebook page.