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Calgary cowgirl sweeps ABRA Finals in Ponoka

Event sees more open entries than ever before

Becky Ring of Calgary on her horse Wynot swept the 27th annual Alberta Barrel Racing Association (ABRA) Finals from Aug. 21 to 27, at the Calnash Ag Event Centre, winning both the 2023 Open High Point and 1D Short Go champions.

The duo cashed in over $4,000 and won two saddles as well as a breeding fee and other sponsored loot.

Ring got Wynot about four months before the finals and it was a fairly quick partnership.

“It took a little while but we’ve clicked and it’s pretty awesome,” Ring told Alicia Erickson in an onsite interview.

On her social media, Ring said Wynot is the most talented horse she’s ever ridden.

“He has an incredible amount of heart and try and goes to work every time he enters the arena. His speed and power make up for my mistakes.”

In the short time they’ve been together, they’ve won just under $10,000, four buckles, two saddles and more.

“We also left a lot of money on the table while figuring each other out,” said Ring. “Our journey is only just beginning and I am so excited for our future.”

Ring and Wynot won the 1D Short Go with a slick 17.134.

The 2D Short Go Champ, Trinity Keebaugh on Alive and Famous, followed that time with a close 17.845.

The rest of the short go champs were:

- 3D Short Go Champ Erin Grundy on Truckle n Sixes CS;

- 4D Short Go Champ Paige Sibbet on Crimson Sun; and

- 5D Short Go Champ Shaun Rathy on Peppy Two Twist.

The 27th anniversary event saw about 1,300 contestants and around 40 vendors flock to Ponoka for the week-long event.

ABRA public relations spokesperson Tamera Campanelli said the event ran wonderfully and was well-attended with the most open entries they’ve ever had.

“The numbers keep growing,” said Campanelli. “We love being at the Calnash.”

All proceeds from the finals go towards the association’s expenses for the event and prizes.

Every year, ABRA collects $5 for every hat that comes off in the arena and donates it to a charity. This year, ABRA raised $700 for the Alberta Children’s Hospital.

Always growing and moving forward, the association is already in the early planning stages for the 30th anniversary finals and considering options for that milestone event.

READ MORE: Over a 1,000 barrel racers descending on Ponoka for ABRA Finals

Emily Jaycox

About the Author: Emily Jaycox

I'm a reporter for Ponoka News and have lived in Ponoka since 2015.
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