South Brawley Arena Hosts Barbara Worth Brigadettes Gymkhana

By
Chris Furguson
While Brawley is the home of the Cattle Call Rodeo, there are a number of smaller groups giving out performances every month
One of those groups is the Barbara Worth Brigadettes, who held their January Gymkhana at the KD Danch Arena south of Brawley.
More than 30 participants in five age groups participated in competition, which consisted of a number of disciplines, including Washington poles (or Pole Bending), barrel racing, keyhole racing and more.
Traditionally, a Gymkhana is an event designed to display precise and controlled actions along with teamwork between horse and rider at speed.  Gymkhana is a term used in the United Kingdom, the eastern US and California while most of the rest of the country uses the term “O-Mok-See,” a derivation of a Native American phrase meaning “Games on Horseback.”
Some of the events included:
• Pole bending, or “Washington poles” at this event, is a slalom-type event where riders race down a line of poles, weave back and forth between the poles, then race back to the start/finish line.  Fastest through the course wins.
• Keyhole racing has a rider go through a narrow entranceway, turn around in a circle, and race back without touching any lines.  Winners were based on time.
• Barrel racing, or cloverleaf racing, involves the riders maneuvering their horses around three barrels in a special pattern.  Winners were determined by time.
Additionally, Cattle Call Queen Danielle Standiford and Teen Queen Chelsey Roper were on hand at the start.  Roper was also competing .
The winners in each division were:
8 and under overall: Cleigh Nelson from Imperial.  Co-Reserve winners:  Molly Pole of Brawley and Ben Cartee of Holtville.
Ages 9 through 13 overall: Bayleigh Nelson from Imperial.  Reserve winner: Terzah Baker.
14-17 group winner was Chelsea Webster, a former Cattle Call Teen Queen and junior at Central Union High School.
The 18-39 winner was Lisa Constable of Brawley.
In the 40 and over age group, the winner was Dale Griggs of Brawley.
The Barbara Worth Brigadettes have been in existence since 1940 and hold several equestrian events throughout the year.