Thursday, September 30, 2010

My Personal Life.

I want to tell you about one of my hobbies well, two actually, taking pictures and watching chuck wagon racing. They kind of go hand in hand. I love to take pictures and needless to say, most of them are of horses and wagon racing. My family has always enjoyed watching chuck wagon racing and would take us as kids. There are a lot of people from my home town who race and they are friends with them. But last year we decided as a family to sponsor a wagon. What is that all about? Well it cost a lot of money to race: you have to buy the horses, feed them, haul them everywhere, take yourselves and your family, feed yourselves too, and lose time off work. So the drivers sell advertising on their tarp and we and a bunch of others put money together and purchased a tarp for Logan Gorst. He is a young driver who not only drives but out rides too.
You may ask what is chuck wagon racing all about? I will try my best to explain it. A chuck wagon team consists of 4 horses (2 leaders and 2 pole horses) that pull the chuck wagon around

2 barrels in a figure eight formation then out on the track and the first team across the line (without penalties) wins the race. I should back up, each team also has two outriders (one to hold the horses and one to throw in the stove) What is a stove, you ask- 2 feed pails glued together to form a barrel shaped item that must be thrown into the wagon when the starting horn blows. The outriders must then also do a figure eight and run the race finishing within 150 feet of their wagon or they are penalized. The only exception to this team is when the drivers go to the Calgary Stampede there are 4 outriders, the extra two throw in tent poles. The whole idea of wagon racing goes back to the olden days when the cook would break camp and throw stuff in the wagon and race to town.
We have been helping out behind in the barns and so have learned a lot about the sport that you don't normally see. For example, these horses are treated very well, they get fed, watered, washed up, doctored up and bedded down before anyone else in the family. The same goes for the morning too. So there is a lot of work to do. The family that we help really care about their horses and you soon get to know each horse and his little quirks. It is hard work but a lot of fun too. This is very much a family sport with several generations involved. This season ended well for us, our driver qualified to compete in Calgary next year as did his dad. His dad also won top points for the season and the final race which allows him a new 2010 GMC truck.
If you have never had to chance to watch a chuck wagon race, why not try it, you might just get hooked too.

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