Photographer's Note

Cowtown, New Jersey is about 15-20 miles from the metropolitan Philadelphia, Pennsylvania area and is the home to the longest running Saturday night rodeo in the United States. The Cowtown Rodeo was started in 1929 and continues to this day in an area that has still managed to stay rural despite its close proximity to one of the east coast’s largest cities. The rodeo runs from May through September.

If you ever had a chance to see a rodeo out west, you will have probably have seen performances by horses and cattle that were bred and raised in Cowtown. The horse in the photo is one such animal that was raised and trained in Cowtown for the specific purpose of competing in the sport of barrel racing. In barrel racing, horse and rider must negotiate around 3 barrels set up in a cloverleaf pattern as fast as possible without knocking a barrel over.

The young man’s family had just purchased this horse for him and he was practicing his turns in this indoor arena. Communication with your horse is key in this sport as horse and rider need to work together in harmony to come up with the fastest times. His first competition with this horse is a youth competition this April. He told me when he gets older, he plans on competing as a professional at Cowtown.

Tech: The arena was relatively dark and no flash was used. I used a monopod to steady the camera the best I could. The image was cropped from the original, levels were adjusted, and then the photo was run through NeatImage to clean up noise.

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Additional Photos by Linda Richters (richtersl) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 992 W: 583 N: 849] (3546)
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