Kim Gerwatoski along with her husband, Deven, pose next to her horse, Elvis, at the Calnash Ag Event Centre recently. She walked away with more than $50,000 after Elvis, and her mare, Fate, had a strong weekend of barrel racing. The owners of Elvis’ sire, Doug and Carol Schafer, were also provided with a cheque for $14,000. Photo courtesy of Kaylee-Jo Henkelman Photography

Ponoka barrel racer clears $50,000 at futurity event

A combination of good breeding and fast times helped her win

Ponoka’s Kim Gerwatoski won’t soon forget the weekend she walked away with more than $50,000 in winnings at a barrel race futurity event.

Held over the Oct. 6 weekend at the Calnash Ag Event Centre, Gerwatoski took part in the Canadian Barrel Horse Incentive Futurity (CBHI) that holds a super stakes, futurity and derby.

The super stakes is run as a side pot in the futurity and derby with money coming directly from the stallion auction over the weekend.

It was an experience that probably comes around once in a lifetime.

Gerwatoski’s prize money had to do with placing well with her horse SR Famousinparadise. Fondly nicknamed Elvis, her horse helped her earn $42,000 plus winnings in the other races. Add to that, Gerwatoski had another horse place well.

Here’s how it all came down.

Gerwatoski said she and Elvis competed against 68 horses and they each had two runs. Nobody beat her all weekend.

Her first run was a time of 17.431 and her second was 17.452. It just so happens that Elvis was the first draw for the first run and the last draw for the second run.

“I already knew before that last run that I won the $40,000,” said Gerwatoski.

Then came the short go. The top 15 racers were up for bragging rights with each rider getting a fresh rake for their run.

Elvis and Gerwatoski marked a time of 17.123, the second fastest time recorded at the ag event centre. “The crowd went wild when I ran.”

The story doesn’t end there.

Gerwatoski had a second horse, a mare named Letta Shawne Bug U — nicknamed Fate — which helped her place third overall. Just after she ran Elvis in the short go, Gerwatoski had about five minutes before her run on Fate was up.

“That’s kind of uncommon for somebody to have two good horses in one year,” she said.

For her it’s all about heading to the futurity events as she trains horses. She was proud of Elvis, pointing out that it was four years to the day that she bought him at auction.

“I might never have another year like this in my life,” she said of the busy weekend.

The owners of Elvis’ sire, Doug and Carol Schafer, were also provided with a cheque for $14,000.

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