The Regional Equine & Agricultural Centre of Huron (REACH) offered up their state of the art facilities as host for the National Barrel Horse Association (NBHA) Canadian Finals.
The NBHA came to Central Huron during harvest fest weekend on Sept. 27 to 29 with competitors travelling from all over Ontario, some from as far as North Bay, Windsor and Welland.
Quebec is the NBHA newest district in Canada, with competitors making the trip from the neighboring province to Clinton for the championships.
Record-breaking numbers in cash and prizes were awarded throughout the weekend, totalling $75,000.
Over $45,000 of that was paid out in cash, and another $30,000 was in prizes.
The event marked the largest in NBHA Canada history, and when the dust had settled organizers said that 1522 runs had been made over the three days of competition. They also had their largest Green as Grass Numbers, which is open to beginner riders who are getting into the sport.
Saturday’s Open 4D barrel race saw 219 horses run, and 90 Pole bending horses competed throughout the competition.
In total over 250 horses competed in the various events over the three days of competition.
To house the horses and their riders Central Huron Council approved REACH to set up a series of tents in their parking lots to handle the influx of riders.
In addition to riders taking home prizes, horses were nominated by members throughout the season and then members voted on the winner at the NBHA Finals for the horse with heart contest presented by Purina.
Doody was crowned the winner of the contest and the owners walked away with a full year of free feed.
For the top competitors, 16 saddles were awarded, and 46 belt buckles were given away.
The NBHA Canada is set to return in the spring of 2020 with their Spring Thaw Competition in May.
If you missed the NBHA Canada Finals, but would like to see what barrel racing is about, REACH Huron will be hosting the Ontario Barrel Racing Association (OBRA) finals happening from Oct. 18 to 20.