Justine Elliot from Lacombe will be making her Canadian Finals Rodeo debut this week in Red Deer. Photo Submitted

Lacombe 16-year-old Justine Elliot makes CFR debut this week

Elliot comes into barrel racing ranked 11th

Lacombe’s own Justine Elliot, 16, will be representing Central Alberta in the Canadian Finals Rodeo (CFR 45) this week in Red Deer.

Elliot, who is a barrel racer, comes into the event ranked 11th after earning $14,167.30 on the pro circuit.

“Considering it is my first one, it is a big deal. Especially since it is Red Deer which is pretty much home for me,” she said.

Elliot began racing seven years ago, after growing up watching her father compete.

“I wanted to do it right from when I was a little kid. It was always a dream of mine to make CFR,” she said

Elliot’s journey to CFR 45 began five years ago when her family purchased her horse Blondie.

“When I got the horse that I knew could run with them,” she said.

Elliot and her family trained Blondie themselves in order to get her to the championship level.

“When we bought her, she wasn’t supposed to be a barrel horse so CFR wasn’t really in my eye at the time,” she said.

Throughout the process, Elliot looked up to heroes in the sport of barrel racing including world champion Lindsay Sears.

“Lindsay Sears is the one that really got me thinking about barrel racing and as I got more into it, I started looking up to all the other girls,” she said,

Being able to win CFR 45, especially at home, would be a dream for Elliot but to do so, she has to overcome reigning Canadian barrel racing champion, Carman Pozzobon, whose earnings of $44,078 has her atop the overall standings.

“Everyone aims to win it, but I am going to try and hopefully make some money. See where that goes,” Elliot said.

Elliot said she is very nervous heading into the week, but expects that to dissipate.

“Once you get in the alleyway the adrenaline starts kicking in and your nerves start going away,” she said, adding regardless of the outcome — she is happy she made it this far.

Elliot added believes this is only the beginning of her barrel racing journey.

“I want to make it to the NFR one day, but for now I will start here and work my way up,” she said.

todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Just Posted

WATCH: Historic night in Red Deer as 2019 Canada Winter Games kicks off

Star-studded Opening Ceremony features athletes from across Canada

Athletes’ medals unveiled at the official kick-off of 2019 Canada Winter Games

Medals depict Central Alberta landscape and pay tribute to First Nations

Sylvan Lake looks to add an adopt-a-road program

A policy for the newly proposed program will come forward to council at a later date

WATCH: Canada Winter Games are finally here

Final leg of torch relay kicked off at Fort Normandeau

Sylvan Lake adds 25 new events to the 2019 line up

Sean Durkin announced 25 new events, in addition to community favourites, are planned for 2019

Fashion Fridays: Up your beauty game

Kim XO, helps to keep you looking good on Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Ontario police field complaints over Amber Alert for missing girl, 11, found dead

Some said the Amber Alert issued late Thursday for Riya Rajkumar disrupted their sleep

‘Mitts don’t just warm hands. They warm hearts’: Mitts for Many Program launches

Donate new or lightly used mittens to bin in the Great Hall of the Gary W. Harris Centre

LOCATED: Innisfail RCMP looking for missing woman

Amanda Kucher was last seen at the Innisfail 7-Eleven on Feb. 15

Red Deer RCMP arrest man after vehicle theft from dealership

Police were able to disable the SUV with assistance from the built-in vehicle assistance system

Red Deer College transforms into Athletes’ Village

Red Deer College’s campus will be home for the athletes during the 2019 Canada Winter Games

Alberta minor hockey team, slammed for Indigenous dance video, forfeits season

Parents say season was too dangerous to finish because the team has been threatened

Trump officially declares national emergency to build border wall

President plans to siphon billions from federal military construction and counterdrug efforts

Alix resident captures beams of light near Lacombe

Lacombe, Blackfalds, Red Deer photos have since gone viral around the world

Most Read