EXPO NM presents Jackpot Barrel Racing through April

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Barrel racers of all levels won’t have to wait for state fair or regional rodeo events to get their competition on.

EXPO New Mexico has begun hosting Jackpot Barrel Racing, where participants literally compete for the day’s jackpot. It takes place at the dairy barn located on the Fairgrounds. The jackpot available for each event is the money raised through fees for entry and exhibition runs on the day of the event, less minimal operational costs.

Entry fees are $25 per rider. Exhibition runs cost just $4 each, or three for $10. There is no admission cost for spectators and parking is free at Gate 6 (San Pedro just south of Lomas).

“One of the main concerns we’ve heard from the horse community has been about the footing in the dairy barn,” general manager Dan Mourning said. “So we sent our Operations crew in there and sifted through the dirt and worked it really well. They pulled out 26 50-gallon drums full of rocks, and then added new dirt and organics to achieve a good, deep footing. The result is the first brand new footing in this facility in as long as anyone can remember — certainly the last two decades.

“We’ve got some of the nicest horse facilities around on what is unquestionably some of the most gorgeous property in New Mexico,” Mourning continued, “and now we’ve got the footing to go with it, and an event designed to let barrel racers come out and practice and get a little competition under their belts. Opening up the grounds to more events is one of our main goals, and we think this is a great start!”

EXPO New Mexico’s Jackpot Barrel Racing takes place from 6 to 10 p.m. the third Thursday of every month through April. Stalls are available for a small fee. The Branding Iron Restaurant will be open. Call Wayne Epstein at (580) 320-9288 for more information.