The Race Was Speedy In Ponoka

by Michelle on April 20, 2015

Barrel Bash Saddle

Short Go Saddle from the Barrel Bash

The 5th Annual Barrel Bash was held over the weekend of April 10-12 at the Calnash Ag Event Center in Ponoka, AB.  The entries were high and the payout was big.    There was a warm up race held Friday and the Barrel Bash runs on Saturday and Sunday.  Average times on two qualified riders for the short go where a saddle was first prize in each division.   There was a hefty payout in each round.  On Saturday, the pace was set by Renee LeClercq and Flirt For A Diamond with a 17.332 for $1102.50 and on Sunday Traci MacDonald and Copy N Paradise set the pace with the quickest time of the weekend for $1390.20 for their 17.044.

With the average times in place, riders came back to the short go with awesome prizes on the line.   Marci Laye and Unleashed Ta Speed set the splits for the other divisions with a 17.166, second in the short go was another LDS Unleashed offspring ridden by Kandi Horn.  Unleash Bently clocked in with a 17.193.    For complete event results check out the Barrel Bash facebook page.

We caught up with the Short Go Champion Marci Laye, to learn more about what makes this 1D saddle winning team tick.

What is your horse’s registered and barn name?
Unleashed Ta Speed. Aka Speedy

Click to enlarge Unleashed Ta Speed's pedigree

Click to enlarge Unleashed Ta Speed’s pedigree


-How long have you been running barrels on her?
I started her on the pattern in the fall of her 3 yr old year. I took her to the futurities last year as a five year old. This is her first derby year.

-What is the training background on this horse?
She is home grown and so Billy started her and after a couple of weeks I took over.

– How would you describe this horse’s running style?
She’s a very big mare (16.1+) yet she turns very tight and bendy. People are always surprised when they stand next to her, because she can turn like a small horse, they don’t realize how big she is watching her. She’s got a very big stride and is super turny.

-What is it you like best about him/her?
She just fits me! It’s like she’s an extension to my body, we just really mesh. She’s also a real people horse and has a real kind, goofiness about her that always makes me smile.

– Which run at the Barrel Bash stands out as your favorite and why?

From left to right.   Unleashed Ta Speed, Marci Laye, Kandi Horn and Unleash Bently.  1st and 2nd in the Short Go.

From left to right. Unleashed Ta Speed, Marci Laye, Kandi Horn and Unleash Bently. 1st and 2nd in the Short Go.

I was real happy with all my runs, as each one got faster. But my last one really sticks out. My friend Kandi Horn had run a 17.193 before me on one of our studs colts, Unleash Bentley and I had texted Billy to tell how excited I was for her! I really didn’t see me outrunning her, but told myself to get real committed on my run and see if I could improve on my last run. Speedy’s second barrel was crazy tight and fast! She felt the best she’s felt in a long time!

-How do you prepare for your runs with this horse (warm up etc.)?
She can get caught up in the action, so I long trot her outside away from everyone. Then I hand walk her for about 10-15 minutes prior to my runs.

-What are your plans for the rest of the year with this horse?
This is her first derby year and I have two other derby horses, so I’ll hit as many derbies as I can. I also feel that it’s time to introduce both Speedy and my other Unleashed filly, Hopes Unleashed to the rodeo world.

What kind of saddle do you use?
On Speedy I use a Raylee Racer and on Hope a Frontier.

-What kind of pad do you use?
SMX Air Ride Pads, by Professional Choice

-What kind of bit do you use?
On Speedy a Carol Goosetree, Double Gag Dr. Bristol long shank

– What kind of products, therapies and/or supplements do you use to maintain your horse throughout the year?
BOT products, soft ride boots, Sharp Edge Products (mare mix) Equitop Myoplast, and Seabuck Equine

-What was your goal and focus heading into the weekend?
We had Ian Zoerb put some new shoes on Speedy and make some slight changes, so I was hoping to see a marked improvement in her. I’m thrilled to say that Ian made a huge difference!

-If you were to share a barrel racing tip what would it be?
Be consistent! There’s no right or wrong style, so find one that fits your style of riding and stick to it. My favorite saying is “Patience is not about doing nothing. Patience is about doing everything you can. But being patient about the results.”

-What do you do when your aren’t barrel racing?
Running our breeding program, looking after the books to our water truck business and the best job….. being a grandma to our baby granddaughter Karsyn!

Marci would like to thank:
Lisa and Travis Gallais for hosting a top notch weekend of barrel racing and being so gracious to everyone! I can’t thank Ian Zoerb enough for making Speedy feel so great.  It was a fun weekend and it was made extra special by the top two spots in the 1D both being Unleashed offspring!

Click to watch a video of that winning run here

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