Justin Rempel

Justin Rempel

Riders dash to Houston gymkhana

Dozens of horses and their riders descended on Four Seasons Park in Houston this Saturday Sept. 17 for a jackpot gymkhana.

Dozens of horses and their riders descended on Four Seasons Park in Houston this Saturday for a jackpot gymkhana. A “gymkhana” is a day of high-speed races.

Hosted by the Pleasant Valley Horse Club, Saturday’s gymkana featured keyhole, poles, flag and quad races as well as the crowd favourite—barrel racing.

“It’s a lot of adrenaline,” said organizer Jonathan VanderMooren.

In the keyhole event, riders ran their horses into a keyhole shape marked on the ground, then raced out without crossing the lines.

In the poles race, they weaved through something like a horseback  slalom course.

Saturday’s gymkhana doubled as this season’s final invitational for northwest riders. The top two in each division of the Fraser Lake, Houston and Terrace horse clubs came in to compete.

The top three winners in each race took home cash prizes.

Saturday was Houston’s first time hosting the race in more than 10 years.