Donna Beierbach and Katies Mine win the 2011 Silver Sage Barrel Futurity in Brooks, AB

by Shayna on July 18, 2011

This past weekend (July 15-16th) was the Silver Sage Barrel Racing Futurity and Derby in Brooks, AB.  The Futurity was won by Donna Beierbach on her mare Katies Mine aka Katie.  Here’s what Donna had to tell us:

Katie's Pedigree - click to enlarge

-Age?  5
-How long have you had Katie?  Bought her the fall of her 2 year old year.
-What is her background regarding training etc?  She was lightly started when we got her.  She was kind of a rammy little spitfire so we had Craig Reesor put a couple weeks on her in January of her 3 year old year.  She needed some flag work and ground manners re-established.  He does a phenomenal job getting their respect but still building confidence.  I took her to Arizona for a month that winter then ranch rode her.  She had nearly a year off while I had our daughter.  We use our horses extensively on the ranch.  Katie is bull whip broke, been to brandings, used to gather, sort and trail cattle etc.
-What is it you like best about her?  She is very gritty and quick footed.
-What is your riding/training style with this particular horse?  I just try to stay in the middle!  I need to ride two handed as far as I can up into the hole and try not to weaken and go to the horn too soon or she gets a tad bit too round.
-With her being as young as she is what do you do to keep her from getting too anxious or nervous?  Lots of flexing, bending and reverse backing exercises to keep her backed off.  She’s funny because you can sprint her wide open in the field then drop the reins on her neck and she’ll walk home on a loose rein.  I think it’s because the ranch work exposes them to all kinds of pressure situations and they become used to dealing with it.
-Can you describe how the runs were you made on her this past weekend in Brooks?  I had a bobble or two in each run.  The first run she stayed pretty round on the left 2 barrels and couldn’t get away from them as quick.  Her second run I really had to take her over to the first barrel – she was headed up the middle a wee bit too much but then the left turns were pretty snappy.  Then in the short go round she wanted to head over to the first too much and I sort of had to hold her off.  I tried to correct her without making a big, jerky move and ended up a bit behind leaving the first.  I was playing catch up across the pen over to second but luckily she was locked on and compensated for me.  It felt like her hind end ran a bit in that turn – like she didn’t get a firm hold of the ground to push off on.  She tried hard each run but hasn’t made very many competition runs yet so it feels like she’s still trying to find her groove.
-What kind of saddle do you run her in?  A Stoney with the medium tree.
-What kind of saddle pad do you use on her?  5 Star
-What bit(s) do you like to use in her?  Reinsman “Reining Horses Curb Gag” with a fat twisted mouth piece.  Sometimes an Eilliot/Myllimaki 3 piece twist with the #8 shank.  She’s very light and responsive and she’ll pack almost anything I put in there so I’ve used lots of different bits on her but seem to come back to those two.
-With being a mom and being as busy as you are how do you make time and manage getting your horses worked and rode?  The past few months with breeding season etc. it has been extremely difficult.  I have ended up riding the last 2 hours before dark most nights.  I’ve taken Katie along to the few rodeos we’ve been to so that I could get her worked at the rodeos the  night before or early in the mornings.  My husband is the most supportive person in the world and has helped out immensely so that I could get some saddle time in.  We have lots of help from his parents and my sister helps with the breeding too… it takes a village…
-Are there any other futurities you are going to enter her at this year?  The rest of the ones up here and maybe the Barrel Of Gold in Helena, Montana.
-What are your future plans with this mare?  I’ll just see where she takes me.  My life is crazy busy right now so the barrel racing is just a bonus and I’m really trying to just enjoy it without putting too much pressure on myself and my horses.

Donna told us that a ladybug landed on Katie’s back when she was saddling for the short go.  She said they are supposed to bring good luck so she  guesses it must work! And that it must, congrats and good luck Donna and Katie!

You can go here for a complete list of results when they become available.

Here is Donna’s second go run on Katie:




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