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The Faith Stock Show & Rodeo is hosting sanctioned Horse National Indian Relay Races, August 11-12, 2018.  Teams from Canada and the U.S. will compete. As part of the rodeo performances, a ticket purchase for rodeos or an all-inclusive Stock Show Button p

The Faith Stock Show & Rodeo is hosting sanctioned Horse National Indian Relay Races, August 11-12, 2018. Teams from Canada and the U.S. will compete. As part of the rodeo performances, a ticket purchase for rodeos or an all-inclusive Stock Show Button p

Horse Nations Indian Relay Races comes to Faith Stock Show & Rodeo


F.Ganje - August 2, 2018

FAITH, SD – When you visit with Calvin Ghost Bear about Indian relay races, the very essence of the emerging sport is apparent in how well-versed he is and how passionately he feels about an event that is steeped in his native culture.

Ghost Bear is among the organizers of the Horse Nations Indian Relay Races being held during this year’s Faith Stock Show & Rodeo, August 7-12, 2018.

“We call it America’s first xtreme sport,” he says.  “That’s disputable back and forth but you’ve got such events as the PBR and others identifying as ‘xtreme.’ When you look see the Indian relay, see the intensity, there is nothing like it, nothing comparable.”

Set for Saturday and Sunday, August 11-12, 2018 on the fairgrounds at the rodeo, Indian relay races are a team event of speed and skill. One rider, three horses, daring exchanges, and action packed non-stop excitement.

When you see the exchanges, the dismounts on mounts on the second and third horse, that’s what creates the excitement,” shares Ghost Bear. In Indian Relay, the lead can change at the snap of a finger.”

The Indian relay races are represented through the Horse Nations Indian Relay Council, a highly organized membership-driven entity representing teams in both Canada and the United States.  Ghost Bear says that interest is also now coming from Europe and Australia.

“There has always been Indian relays in the large and small tribal powwow’s and fair’s, he explains.  “But in the last eight to 10 years, it’s become more organized and the money is increasing. I remember when we ran a whole weekend for $500.  Now these teams will run for one weekend for prize money ranging from $10,000 to $40,000, depending on the location.”  He adds, “Now that we have an organized sport we have a schedule of accredited races with a membership comprised of American and Canadian teams.”

The relay team consists of four members and three horses; a rider, a mugger, (a person who brings the horse onto the track at the start of the race and gets the jockey safely on); a holder and a catcher. The four-legged team is comprised of the leader horse, intermediate horse and the finishing horse.

“There’s a lot of communication and coordination between team members as they position horses, getting them ready for the next exchange.”

Races, that include three divisions, Warrior, Chief and Maiden, are set for Saturday, August 11th at 2:30pm and Sunday, August 12th at 1:00 pm. It’s an accredited race with a $8,000 added money. The winning team earns a berth at the Horse Nations Indian Relay Races Finals in Walla Walla, WA September 21-23, 2018.

“The Calgary Stampede is now hosting Indian Relay,” he observes. “To get to the level where they bring you on at Calgary, they see the crowd appeal of the sport. And Pendleton Roundup, one of the oldest and most prestigious rodeos in the United States has added Indian Relay to its program this year.”

The athleticism of both horse and rider is on display during Indian relay races  during the Faith Stock Show and Rodeo, where championship-winning teams, great horses, and amazing horsemanship make for an action-packed sporting event.

For more information, go on line to www.horsenationsrelay.com and see more on Facebook.

Listen to the complete story ON DEMAND at www.kbhbradio.com



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