By Amy Wilson
The past four years Pamela Capper has finished in the top 25 of the WPRA Barrel Racing World Standings. This year, she did even better and qualified for her first Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. Now that she’s in Las Vegas, she didn’t waste any time – literally – earning a trip to the South Point.
“I’m so excited I cannot believe it,” said Capper of her 13.75 second run. “I really had no way to expect this. Running up the alley I heard the 13-something announced and I knew it was good. It’s so thrilling.”
Capper tied the record for the fastest time in Round 1 with Mary Walker’s 13.75 in 2012.
The Cheney, Washington mom of three was riding Sheza Smooth Flight “Jesse”, the 14 year old brown mare she raised and trained herself. With plenty of confidence in her equine partner, Capper’s plan was to do the same thing she does at every rodeo, “I really wasn’t nervous at all. I knew my horse knew her job, so I just had to concentrate on doing mine correctly. I just needed to keep my hands correct and let her do her thing.”
Capper, along with the other barrel racers, showed their support for Nancy Hunter by wearing purple, which is the color for pancreatic cancer awareness. Earlier in the day, at the WPRA Star Celebration, they released gold and purple balloons to express their heartfelt thoughts and prayers for Hunter, as well as, their desire to continue the Glitter Like Gold night (Saturday 12/3) that Hunter so passionately promoted last year to help fight childhood cancer. More information is available on the Facebook pages, “NFR Glitter Like Gold 2016” and “Huntin’ For A Cure”.
Along with color-coordinating for great causes, the WNFR Barrel Racers are dressing for the chance to win the Jerry Ann Taylor Best Dressed Award. “I got an outfit for everyday. My daughter has decorated my clothes for me, and we’re out to try to win that,” Capper said while wearing a purple fringe outfit. You can vote for your favorite at wpra.com.
Following Capper’s $26,231 check for first place was Kimmie Wall, who placed second with 13.90. Jana Bean made a pretty run for third place with 13.93. Sherry Cervi started her 19th NFR with a time of 13.96 which was fourth place. Amberleigh Moore earned fifth place with 14.02, and Mary Burger’s 14.10 held on for the sixth place check.
Courtesy of WPRA