Texas Athletes & Equine Partners dominate the week in Oklahoma City, capturing four of the Top 5 positions in 1D Race
As a week of high-energy barrel racing came to an end at the 20th anniversary of BBR’s (Better Barrel Races) World Finals in Oklahoma City, Victoria Procter (Ledbetter, Texas) and her equine partner “NNN Sixums Firewater” rocketed to the top of the BBR 1D standings to clinch the event win.
Acquired in 2022 by Teton Ridge, a multi-platform western lifestyle and entertainment company devoted to elevating the western way of life, BBR is part of the company’s growing western community and leads the industry hosting the largest and highest paying divisional world finals, exclusive to barrel racing, in the western sports industry. With just under $900,000 in prize money on the line in 2023, the event spanned multiple days and three arenas, featuring more than 2,200 horses and 6,700 competitive runs.
“The 2023 World Finals was, as always, a very exciting week, not only for Better Barrel Races and Teton Ridge, but for our membership and the western and equine sports communities,” said Ross Wright of BBR. “Celebrating the 20th anniversary of this event was so special and saw the second highest number of athlete entries in history combined with a larger purse of payouts than ever before. To see the organization and our finals expand year-after-year showcases the growth and support of the industry by new audiences. The dust has barely settled in the arena, and we are already planning our 2024 World Finals for April 23-28 next year.”
After a run earlier in the week of 15.538-seconds during the Visit OKC qualifying race, Procter’s second run 15.807 time in the SmartPak qualifying race was less than ideal. The first run, where she placed 16th, punched her ticket into the Classic Equine Championship Round alongside 323 other qualifying athletes.
With a round sweeping time of 15.184-seconds in the final round, Procter collected her first BBR world title.
For photo highlights of the 2023 BBR World Finals in Oklahoma City, including Procter’s 1D winning run, courtesy BBR, click here.
Occurring in Oklahoma annually since 2004, more than 2,000-barrel racers from across the country, including 20-year-old Procter, put it all on the line to compete in the prestigious event’s 20th installment held at the Oklahoma State Fairgrounds.
As the elevated competition played out, close on Proctor’s heels with an electric second-place finish overall in the 1D was fellow Texan Kylee Scribner (Azle, Texas) and equine partner “Firewater Cartel.”
After a second-place qualifying run time of 15.354-seconds in the SmartPak qualifying race, Scribner qualified into the Championship Round.
Scribner finished the final round with a time of 15.202-seconds.
Out of the remaining three athletes in the Top 5 of the time-honored event, two more hailed from the Lone Star state alongside Proctor and Scribner – with one Floridian rounding out the champions.
Youth phenom London Gorham (Cotulla, Texas) and “Runnin’ With Wings” clinched third-place in the 1D with a championship round time of 15.247-seconds.
Earlier in the week 16-year-old Gorham had the fastest time of the week, a resounding 15.101-seconds, in her first-place run at the Coliseum qualifying race. Following up with a Top 10 finish in the SmartPak qualifier, Gorham sailed the dirt in 15.500 seconds.
Point, Texas resident DaCota Monk and partner “Slick Talking Lady” captured fourth place overall at the BBR World Finals 1D.
With a qualifying run of 15.782-seconds in the SmartPak qualifying race, she then recorded a 15.272-second time in the Championship Round.
Rounding out the Top 5 of the 1D title race, Megan Swint (Dunnellon, Florida) and “Zingzing Its Talent” advanced into the final round after her qualifying run of 15.513-seconds in the SmartPak qualifying race.
Speeding across the arena on the final day, she recorded a 15.307-second run.
In the 2D competition, Madison McCaffity (Omaha, Texas) led the field as the champion aboard equine athlete “Fueling the Flame.”
Coming in 33rd in the Coliseum qualifying race 2D with a time of 15.708, McCaffity advanced to the 2D Championship Round where she swept a stellar 15.695-second run.
Minnesota’s own Heidi Gunderson (Murdock, Minnesota) and her equine partner “Last Chance Fling” clinched the title of 3D Champion by outpacing her fellow competitors in the Championship Round at 16.186-seconds.
Lucinda Herrington (Palestine, Texas) championed the 4D title race with a 16.685 run in the final round. Earlier in the week she and her equine partner “Trixie” qualifying 16.869-second run in the SmartPak qualifying race landed her in eighth position.
The final champion of the week was Gloria Leopard (Purcell, Oklahoma), winning the 5D title aboard “Little Star O Heaven.” Qualifying in a 17.356-second run, Leopard catapulted the 3rd place initial finish into a first-place lead in the 5D after a 17.197 run in the Championship Round.
For a full list of BBR World Finals qualifiers, finalists and more, click here.
About Teton Ridge:
Teton Ridge is a multi-platform, wholly American-owned western lifestyle and entertainment company devoted to the iconic American western way of life. Teton Ridge’s Sports division was created with the singular focus of elevating classic Western sports and America’s western culture on the world stage, while broadening audiences around the globe as well as at home. In 2021, Teton Ridge acquired The American, the iconic event of the rodeo circuit, to continue to expand the audiences for rodeo sports and make it the world’s premier Western culture event. For more information about Teton Ridge, please visit tetonridge.com or @tetonridge on Instagram @tetonridgeusa on Facebook.
About Better Barrel Races
Since its inception in 2003, Better Barrel Races has paid out more than $112 million to competitors at its sanctioned events, with $10.4 million of that within the past year alone. With a membership list that embraces more than 19,000 members and 1,000 independent event producers hosting more than 1,800 races in 2020, they are a leader in the industry. In addition to the monumental number of events held throughout the year, Better Barrel Races hosts the largest and highest paying divisional world finals exclusive to barrel racing. With just under $900,000 in prize money and $75,000 in awards, the event spans four days and three competition arenas to feature more than 2,200 horses and 6,400 competitive runs. The exceptional team managing Better Barrel Races, that to date boasts more than 150 years combined experience in the barrel racing world, will continue to work alongside the team at Teton Ridge to advise, consult and assist with the historic partnership in order to become an unrivaled powerhouse.
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