There’s team roping, calf roping, bull riding, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, bareback riding, tie-down roping — and then there’s barrel racing with cowboys and cowgirls coming from all over the world.
Let’s get right down to the barrel — and take note of the WPRA 2021 champions set to make a run in 2022. It’s no secret the bond between the rider and horse is critical to successful barrel racing. Learn more about the best of the best.
Hailey Kinsel. Three-time WPRA world champion
Hometown: Cotulla, Texas | WPRA Season Earnings: $113,528.59
Recent Career Highlights: 2018-2020 WPRA World Champion, 2020 Wrangler NFR Average Champion, Fastest Time and set NFR earnings record, two-time WPRA standard pattern rodeo record setter (Dodge City, Kansas, in summer 2020, broke it at Wrangler NFR in December 2020). 2021 Fourth of July WPRA high-money barrel racer. 2021 Champion Cheyenne Frontier Days, Amarillo, Texas; Fort Madison, Iowa; Kansas’ Biggest Rodeo Phillipsburg; Sheridan, Wyoming; Ogden, Utah; Livingston, Montana; Co-Champion Guymon, Oklahoma. 2020, 2019 and 2017 RFD-TV’s The American Champion. NFR Thomas and Mack Center arena record holder (13.11 seconds in 2017), 2017 WPRA Reserve World Champion, 2017 National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association Barrel Racing Champion, multiple pro rodeo wins.
Jordon Briggs. 2021 Champion Ellensburg Washington
Hometown: Tolar, Texas | WPRA Season Earnings: $102,618.20
Recent Career Highlights: Famous Lil Jet voted 2021 WPRA/AQHA Horse of the Year; Dodge City and Abilene, Kansas; Red Lodge, Montana; Laramie, Wyoming; Crockett, Texas; Fort Smith, Arkansas. Multiple 2021 pro rodeo reserve championships and placings. 2009 Wrangler NFR qualifier and round winner. 2006 Barrel Futurities of America World Futurity Champion (aboard 2009 NFR mount Frenchmans Jester), 2014 BFA Juvenile Futurity Champion (aboard 2021 back-up rodeo horse Frenchmans Future). Multiple futurity, derby, aged-event, and open wins.
Shelley Morgan. 2021 Champion RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo
Hometown: Eustace, Texas | WPRA Season Earnings: $94,229.33
Recent Career Highlights: 2021 Champion RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo, Estes Park and Greeley, Colorado; Casper, Wyoming; Elk City, Durant and Claremore, Oklahoma; Wichita Falls, Gladewater, Bay City, Mineral Wells and Huntsville, Texas. 2012 and 2015 Champion Texas Circuit Finals Rodeo, 2014 Year-End Champion Texas Circuit, multiple RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo qualifier, multiple Texas Circuit Finals qualifier, multiple pro rodeo and open wins, futurity money earner.
Jessica Routier 2021 Champion
Hometown: Buffalo, South Dakota | WPRA Season Earnings: $78,847.28
Recent Career Highlights: 2021 Champion Lawton, Oklahoma; Colorado Springs, Colorado; Aberdeen, South Dakota; Hastings, Nebraska; Wolf Point, Montana. Multiple 2021 pro rodeo reserve championships and placings. 2021 Year-End Champion Badlands Circuit. 2020 RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo average champion, 2017 and 2010 Badlands Circuit Champion, Fiery Miss West named 2017 Badlands Circuit Horse of the Year, multiple RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo qualifier. 2003 College National Finals Rodeo Champion. Multiple pro rodeo, open and aged-event wins.