Barrel racing is a rodeo event in which a horse and rider attempt to complete a clover-leaf pattern around preset barrels in the fastest time. Though both boys and girls compete at the youth level and men compete in some amateur venues, in collegiate and professional ranks, it is primarily a rodeo event for women. It combines the horse's athletic ability and the horsemanship skills of a rider in order to safely and successfully maneuver a horse through a clover leaf pattern around three barrels (typically three fifty-five gallon metal or plastic drums) placed in a triangle in the center of an arena.
Barrel racing originally developed as an event for women. While the men roped or rode bulls and broncs, the women barrel raced. Not much is known about the exact dates and details of barrel racing developments. It is believed that Barrel Racing first saw competitive light in the state of Texas.