Barrels of fun

Joyce LeFevre returns to the rodeo

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Before she became a mother, Joyce LeFevre competed in rodeos. Now that her children are older and out of the house, she's back at it.

"I thought I'd like to try it again," she said. "I took a clinic in April and started competing in barrel racing."

LeFevre started com--peting in races sanctioned by the National Barrel Horse Association in the spring and came home with a state championship in the Senior 3D race.

Her times were in the mid-20s when she took her first runs in the spring, and she had improved into the 18s by last weekend at the State Finals in Brighton.

The Maybell resident learned right alongside her horse, Sassy. They trained together on the ranch on the outskirts of the town.

"I was pretty green, and so was my horse to start," she said. "You forget a little bit what it was like."

When she started to get the feel for the sport again, she started to put in some work to get better.

"I took me a while to get back in physical shape," she said. "I work at the post office (in Craig), so with full-time work, it was hard to train sometimes."

The term 3D means the third division. Each class is separated by increments after the fastest time.

The fastest ride of the weekend is considered 1D, then a half-second slower is 2D and one second slower is 3D, etc. The top times in each division are crowned champions.

This weekend, LeFevre will compete in the Region 10 Championships. She is going in ranked second in 3D.

"At states there are no previous rankings, so how you ride that weekend is what you get," she said. "In the region, it's based on points throughout the season."

The region consists of Gar--field, Rio Blanco, Moffat, Eagle, Pitkin and Routt Counties. There were six state champions from the region, so it looks to be a competitive rodeo this weekend.

After the regional finals, Le----Fevre plans to travel to other competitions, but for the most part, she'll be busy again in the spring.

"I'll travel with my daughter because she competes, too," she said. "That makes it fun."

She's starting to get the fever of competition again.

"It's always a competition with yourself to do better," she said. "It's been fun because I compete with a good group."

For more information about the NBHA and Region 10, go to www.nbhaco-10.freeservers.com.

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