BY MADISON SHAPLAND
Fort Hays’ Rodeo Club is hosting a series of four separate barrel racing competitions called the Tiger Turn and Burn on Sundays. It is properly and officially run and is an open event for college students and locals of any age alike to enter.
The Tiger Turn and Burn works on a jackpot system similar to a 4-D system. The entry fee is divided up, so the winner of the competition walks away with the biggest prize, and then as places decrease, so too does the prize. Not only does this bring some competition to the area and the club’s members, but it is also a source of fundraising for the club.
The Fort Hays State University’s Rodeo Club is a part of the university’s Agriculture department and has been around since the late 60s.
“Our goal is to continue the tradition, compete, and go to the college national finals rodeo,” Head Coach Guy Forell said.
To get there, the team will hit seven different rodeos in the spring, taking them to different parts of Kansas and Oklahoma.
“What’s unique about competing in college is that we’ll go against universities and junior colleges alike,” Forell said. “And the jucos can be incredibly tough. In fact, we compete in one of the toughest regions for college rodeo, and we’re competitive at that level.”
Starting the year off with 29 members, the club looks to make a short go at every rodeo. They’ll compete as individuals and in team formats with about four to six on team. Senior Brekken Hoffman primarily competes in the breakaway and goat tie but has been trying barrels lately.
“I’ve made friends here that are going to last me a lifetime,” Hoffman said. “This is the only time in life where rodeo is a team event, so it’s really special to have that comradery and growing stage with each other. I’m looking forward to one last ride with my friends.”
With only two opportunities to barrel race left, the club is excited to get some time in before their season begins and enjoy sharing the love of rodeo with the community. The next Tiger Turn and Burn will take place on Sunday at the FHSU indoor Arena (1670 230th Ave Hays, KS 67601), with exhibitions beginning at 12:30 pm and races at 2:00 pm.
On February 26th, there will be another competition with a similar schedule of 12:30 pm exhibitions and 2:00 pm races. Entries for exhibitions (pre and post-run) are $5, 3D Pewee (7 and under) are $15, 3D Youth (8-18) are $25, 4D Open are $35, with an office fee of $10.
FHSU Rodeo is asking that you call before you haul. Reach out to Kelly Forell at 785-735-7271.