The Snowflake Pioneer Days Rodeo is unlike most rodeos, which typically close with bull riding. The annual two-night rodeo at Taylor Rodeo Park does feature bull riding, but as a prelude to its signature event, the World Championship Keg Race, a horseman’s version of musical chairs.
This year’s race had nine teams of horses and riders, all displaying nifty quick skills. Each round begins with riders seated. When the order to start is given, the riders quickly mount and ride to the opposite end of the arena to round a barrel and head back to the starting area. During this time, one or two “kegs” (in this case milk crates) are removed and any rider not securing a seat at the end of the race is eliminated.
This year’s World Champion is Hayden Bauer. Bauer has the option of moving on to the Navajo County Fair and Rodeo in Holbrook, which will present its inaugural keg race on Sept. 13 and 14.