Jodee Aylward (centre) after winning the 1D Barrel Race at the Fernvale Queen of Hearts. Photo: Supplied
Jodee Aylward (centre) after winning the 1D Barrel Race at the Fernvale Queen of Hearts. Photo: Supplied

Lockyer rodeo rider has eyes on all-round title

RACING around three barrels happens so fast, there’s no time for error, horse rider Jodee Aylward says.

After the rodeo season was cut short this year due to coronavirus, it gave the Plainland horse rider time to work on her barrel racing.

It’s the final piece of the puzzle she needs to claim the National Rodeo All-Round title.

To take top honours, Jodee needs wins in the barrels, roping and steer undecorating – where riders rip a flag off a steer.

And after an impressive round at the Fernvale Queen of Hearts competition this month, Jodee has her eyes on the prize.

She was holding the fastest time going into the fifth round aboard her horse Harm, with a score of 17.669, when she was overtaken by another competition.

However, she regained the lead on her junior horse Legend, with a time of 17.447.

From a field of 737 horses, Jodee had four of the fastest times in the top 11 – and won the 1D championship Mad Hatter.

For Jodee, barrel racing and working towards the All-Round title is “the dream”.

“My dad was a saddle bronc rider for 15 years, and then I just perused through with rodeos into my adult life,” Jodee said.

“I started seriously barrel racing this year, but I normally do breakaway roping and steer undecorating.

“I have rodeoed most of my life, but my goal is to win an all-round title.”

Jodee Aylward (centre) after winning the 1D Barrel Race at the Fernvale Queen of Hearts. Photo: Supplied
Jodee Aylward (centre) after winning the 1D Barrel Race at the Fernvale Queen of Hearts. Photo: Supplied

Jodee said the coronavirus restrictions meant she was able to form a bond with her new barrel horse Harm and enter some competitions prior to the season starting on New Year’s Eve.

On December 31, Jodee will bring in the new year at Goomeri for the start the National Rodeo Association season.

But in the lead up the next five weeks will be spent on the road as she prepares to compete at Nebo in Central Queensland for the $5000 barrel race.

“It’s for the achievement and spending time with my unicorns,” Jodee said

“My brother always said to me ‘why do you rodeo, you can’t make money’, but I say it’s about the achievement and satisfaction and the love of the sport.”

Jodee will also help rising rodeo and barrel racing riders on their journey with a clinic at her Plainland property Rusty Acres home of the Unicorn Valley.

In January, American barrel racer Kit Kickwood – who is now based in Rockhampton – will take 15 students through the ropes at the clinic.



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