What Is The Best Horse For Barrel Racing? (Perfect answer)

Quarter Horse Quarter Horses are the top choice for any barrel racer. All of the top pros are currently racing barrel horses to victory. These horses are incredibly fast, with some able to reach speeds of up to 55 miles per hour. This makes them the fastest horses of all.

  • The best barrel horse is athletic, smart, fast, and has sound conformation. The best breed in barrel racing is the Quarter horse. Quarter horses dominate every prestigious barrel racing competition, and no others are close.

What size horse is best for barrel racing?

I see a lot of good barrel horses that are between 14 and 15 hands, which seems to be the normal height for a good barrel horse.

What gender of horse is best for barrel racing?

Winning at barrel racing requires a horse that is both fast and maneuverable and a rider who is supple and can think fast. In the professional rodeo circuit the event is often reserved for female riders. However, in other venues; for example, at youth and amateur levels in the U.S. boys or men compete.

What is a good barrel horse?

The best barrel racing horse breeds are the Quarter horse, Paint horse, Mustang, Appaloosa, Thoroughbred, and Pony of the Americas. Quarter horses are considered the best barrel racing horse breed and dominate the barrel racing world.

How much does a good barrel horse cost?

Barrel horse average price The average price for a barrel horse is $25,000 – $30,000. One of the highest-selling barrel horses was Guys Famous Girl, a two-year-old who sold for $68,000. There’s no one best breed of a barrel horse. However, the Quarter Horse is the most popular choice.

Are Thoroughbreds good for barrel racing?

Thoroughbreds are NOT good barrel racers. Their legs are far to long and they’ll have trouble getting close to the barrels. They’re okay for barrel racing if you don’t want to get close to the barrels. But they’re mostly better for english riding.

Are Friesian horses good for barrel racing?

Friesians are also robustly built, and have compact and muscular bodies, with shorter legs. This is a good thing when thinking of training a Friesian for barrel racing: their strong musculature may protect them from injury when practicing this demanding sport. (source).

Do mares race against stallions?

Racehorses can be either male or female. Mares (female horses) compete against their male counterparts and often win. Some of the world’s best racehorses have been female.

Are race horses treated well?

Racehorses treated well perform better. Racehorse trainers make money when the horses they train are successful. For horses to run their best race, they need to be at their best, both mentally and physically. Some horses get ice therapy, acupuncture, and chiropractor treatment.

What’s a good horse name?

List of the Most Popular Horse Names

  • Bella.
  • Alex.
  • Lilly.
  • Alexia.
  • Fancy.
  • Sugar.
  • Lady.
  • Tucker.

What are the best horse breeds for racing?

5 Best Horse Breeds for Racing

  • Thoroughbreds. Thoroughbred horses are probably one of the most popular ones, dominating the horseracing industry.
  • American Quarter Horse. The Quarter horse is one of the most popular breeds of horse in America.
  • Arabian Horses.
  • Standardbred Horses.
  • Appaloosa.

What age do barrel horses retire?

In general, racehorses retire between eight and ten years old. However, it’s challenging to know when their racing career will end as some might not be competitive anymore because they lack the speed while others are forced out due to injury much sooner than expected.

Do horses like barrel racing?

Many people who have seen barrel races think that the horses are scared into a hot headed or craze like state. When in reality, that is what some horses get like after only barrel racing for a short time. But not all horses turn out like that, it’s all about the horse’s personality.

What is the average time for barrel racing?

Average times depend on how big the arena is, but usually they will range from about fifteen seconds to thirty seconds. Carlee Pierce is said to have one of the fastest times known, running at thirteen and forty-six seconds in the National Finals Rodeo (Wolf, 2011).

What is the age limit for barrel racing?

There are four NBHA Classes, the YOUTH 4-D for ages 0-12, the TEEN for ages 13-18, the OPEN 4-D for any age, and the SENIOR for competitors 50 years of age and older. Q: How does the 4-D format work? A: All riders, regardless of ability, run in the same barrel race.

Top 5 Horse Breeds for Barrel Racing

The author has spent her entire life in the presence of horses. She works with rescued horses as well as horses who are just in need of a refresher course. Photograph from of Flickr of a rider executing a spin around a barrelmicadew (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Best Horses for Barrel Racing

For her whole life, the author has been surrounded by horses. The horses she works with are rescued or are in need of a little TLC. Photograph from of Flickr of a rider executing a round around a barrelmicadew (CC BY-SA 2.0)

  1. Thoroughbreds, Paint Horses, Quarter Horses, Appaloosas, and Grade Horses are among the breeds represented.

1. Thoroughbred

Thoroughbreds are large, powerful horses that are generally used for racing. They are bred for speed and are easily able to handle the twists and turns of a barrel race course. From bays to dapple grays, and even uncommon whites, their hues can range from one extreme to the other. They may or may not have toes, which can make things either simpler or more difficult. Rasping once a month is less difficult, but requiring a wedge for shoes is more difficult. Thoroughbreds are fast and powerful, but they have a bad temper.

2. Paint Horse

Regardless of what class or route they are on, the Paint Horse’s vibrant colors and markings draw a lot of attention to themselves and the arena they are in. It’s no surprise that they’re quick runners and excellent turners. They are usually low-maintenance horses with a calm temperament. Paint horses are the most straightforward to teach and are suitable for riders of all levels.

3. Quarter Horse

Quarter horses, like Paint horses, are a calm and even-tempered breed, which makes them reasonably easy to teach. They are available in a variety of colors and can occasionally be marked with paint. Quarter horses frequently put on their own shows, which may involve speed competitions.

4. Appaloosa

The Appaloosa horse is a beautiful breed of horse that competes in its own racing events, which are held in the United States. This is a nice breed for children.

5. Grade Horses

Grade Horses are horses whose ancestors are unknown or who have a mixture of ancestors. It is typically the horses that have been raised in your own backyard that might take you by surprise. They can be any hue or have any markings, and their temperaments can be a little strange. Grade horses are the ones who can provide you with the highest chance of winning any event you choose.

Barrel-Racing Sisters

Caleigh Buffkinon will be 25 years old on July 25, 2020.

Read More From Pethelpful

When I was 10, I started barrel racing with a paint horse, and I still believe that paint horses are a terrific barrel racing breed. Georgieon June 09, 2020: I am just 12 years old and I own my own pony, which I am now training to barrel race, although he isn’t quite getting the hang of it yet. Is there anyone that can offer advice? georgieon My dream job is to become a barrel racer, and I also want to do pole bending since I really dislike horse shows, especially when they incorporate showmanship, because everyone is so uptight and judgy.

  1. 16th of May, 2020: Hello, even though I am only 12 years old, I aspire to be a barrel racer.
  2. whithmindaon February 28, 2020: I have a Quarter Horse who is really overweight.
  3. Horses, in general, are one of my favorite animals.
  4. That’s what I use for barrel racing.
  5. haileyon On February 10, 2020, thoroughbreds would be preferable to barrel racing in terms of pole bending.
  6. January 20, 2020: In the actual rodeo world, you won’t find many thoroughbred writers who aren’t up to date on the latest news.
  7. Quarterhorses are sprinters, as is the case with all horses.

I, too, am a fan of thoroughbreds.

They are not going to be the most successful barrel breed in history.

The appendix, on the other hand, is fantastic.

Resea Raeon Can a Tennessee Walker also serve as a barral horse on July 26, 2019?

Ellieon February 08, 2019: Quarter horses are the finest, in my view, since you seldom see a thoroughbred win the National Finals Race.

kayon February 04, 2019: In my opinion, any horse can barrel race (and other similar events) provided it has been properly taught.

sydneyon Okay, it’s the third of January.

Because the parents of a full-bred QH are not recorded, the QH might be deemed grade.

It is simply a word that is used to indicate that the horse cannot be registered.

It was initially created to allow quarter horses who did not pass inspection to be registered with the state.

For more information, see the American Public Health Association’s website.

January 30, 2018: Maceyon December 10, 2017:I have a paint horse, but my grandfather runs a large horse racing farm, and personally, I believe that the paint horse is the greatest barrel horse available.

elioton Thoroughbreds may become excellent barrel horses if you have the patience to train them properly, as reported on March 10, 2017.

Jeanon 15th of July, 2016: Although my QH is quite quick, I am unsure of his ability to turn, and I do not have any barrels to put in their stead.

Kelleon Posted on December 8, 2015: Different strokes for different people.

She was a slim, mean running machine with a lot of stamina.

I was able to win buckles and other other tack off of her.

I’m not sure what I should choose, says Jackie on August 25, 2015.

Audreyon Paint horses are a distinct breed, as of August 22, 2015.

Paints are distinct from quarters in several ways.

I’ve never encountered a paint horse that didn’t put your riding abilities to the test, unless, of course, we’re talking about lesson horses.

I have one of them and trained her myself.

Tonion, on June 28th, 2015, said: The American Paint Horse is a kind of horse that combines the structural qualities of a western stock horse with a pinto spotting pattern of white and black coat colors to create a unique and beautiful horse.

a colossal eon The 21st of May, 2015: A paint is not a type of dog; it is a color.

No, I don’t believe that painting and QHs are simple to train.

Appaloosas are unquestionably my favorite breed!

natalieon The 23rd of April, 2015: Actually, I had a thoroughbred that was a fantastic barrel horse, and she was mine.

If you haven’t really rode a thoroughbred as a barrel horse, I wouldn’t suggest that they make horrible barrel horses based on your experience.

It makes a difference how you train them.


SammyLine4444on The 23rd of November, 2014: Rae, in actuality, I do not agree with you that Paints are essentially Quarter Horses, as you claim.

If they were, they would be referred to as Quarter Horses rather than Paint Horses.

Paints are not Quarter Horses, and Quarter Horses are not Quarter Horses, which is the point of this discussion.

Laurenon The 12th of October, 2014: Thoroughbreds are capable of making a reliable barrel horse.

I have a racehorse that has been abused off the track.

Raeon The 24th of June, 2014: I believe that appendix should have been used instead of thoroughbreds in your list.

In addition, a paint horse is just a quarter horse that has been colored.

Lexi Gonzalezon is a model and actress.

The horses that I ride with my uncles and cousins are not excellent barrel racers, unless you enjoy not being near to the barrels and having a bad time.

brion The 5th of August, 2013: Thoroughbreds do not do well in barrel races.

The only time they’re appropriate for barrel racing is when you don’t want to go too near to the barrels. However, they are often more suitable for English riding. Quarter horses are the most popular breed for barrel racing because of their speed and agility. That is a proven truth.

10 Barrel Racing Horse Breeds (with Pictures)

As a 10-year-old riding a paint horse, I still believe that paints are an excellent barrel racing breed. Georgieon Posted on June 09, 2020: I am only twelve years old and I have my own pony, which I am currently training to barrel race, but he isn’t quite getting the hang of it yet. Any suggestions or hints would be greatly appreciated. georgieon My dream job is to become a barrel racer, and I also want to do pole bending because I really dislike horse shows, especially those that include showmanship, because everyone is so uptight and judgy.

  1. The 16th of May in the year 2020: Hello, even though I’m only 12 years old, I want to be a barrel racer.
  2. whithmindaon A fat Quarter Horse is what I have on my property on February 28, 2020.
  3. Horses, in general, are one of my favorite things.
  4. Emerion Quarter horses are the best on February 12, 2020.
  5. Preparing for the barrel raceron is a time-consuming endeavor.
  6. Racehorses are known for running longer and faster than their counterparts on the track.
  7. When looking for a serious barrel racing prospect, I will not purchase a thoroughbred, as none have qualified for the NFR.

Stunning, intelligent, and gifted!

On a small pattern, they are not as quick as QH, and they do not stop as quickly, which is required to enter a turn.

gracieon I own all of these horses as of September 23, 2019.

– July 26, 2019 – Breannaon May 18, 2019: Quarter horses and Morgan horses are, in my opinion, the best barrel racing horses on the market today.

Thoroughbreds are not inherently evil, however.

My TWH has proven to be extremely capable in barrels and poles, and she even jumps a little when trail riding.

It should be noted that grade is not a breed, but rather a descriptive phrase.

It is possible to grade virtually every breed of horse.

Donaldon Apha is a breed registration that was established on June 22nd, 2018.

Their bloodlines have changed over the years to include thoroughbreds, quarter horses, and Arabians, but they must have specific color patterns in order to qualify, or they can be registered as breeding stock provided they have at least one registered paint parent on their side.

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Danion Despite the fact that he is just a few inches tall, my Arabian flies around the barrels.

However, I believe that the paint horse is the best barrel horse.

elioton Thoroughbreds may become excellent barrel horses if you have the patience to train them properly.

Jeanon on the 15th of July, 2016, the following day Because I don’t have any barrels for my QH, and I’m not sure if he’ll be good on turns, I’m wondering if it’s safe to substitute other circular things for the barrels.

Over the course of many years, I owned a thoroughbred that I utilized for barrel racing.

Making time from the third barrel all the way to the end was important to her.

However, I am enjoying my quarter horse and would not use another thoroughbred for the barrels.

What should I choose?

Audreyon PAINTING HORSES ARE A BREED, as on August 22, 2015.

Compared to quarters, paints are a little more flexible.

In all my years of riding, I have never encountered a paint horse that didn’t put your riding abilities to the test.

Codyon Thoroughbreds make excellent barrel horses, according to a report published on July 09, 2015.

The public had their doubts about Dream and myself, but she has proven them wrong by setting 1D time records.

When people hear the word, they think of pinto, which is a color.

Any breed can be affected by this hue, which is known as “paint.” In my opinion, painting and QHs are not difficult to train.

Appaloosas are without a doubt my favorite breed.

natalieon on the 23rd of April, 2015 My thoroughbred, who was a fantastic barrel horse, belonged to a friend.

You cannot judge a thoroughbred’s ability as a barrel horse until you have actually rode one as a barrel horse.

Actually, thoroughbreds make excellent barrel racers since not all thoroughbreds are tall, and even the tallest thoroughbreds can compete in them.

The one that my trainer rides is progressing quite well!

the horse had been on the racetrack initially, before being rescued by my trainer!

If you believe that Paints are truly Quarter Horses, I respectfully disagree with your statement.

Quarter horses are available in a variety of colors, including brown, black, and grey.

Colorado Equestrainon Wednesday, November 23rd : Quarter horses, without a doubt; they are specifically bred for Barrel Racing and other similar activities.

The amount of time and patience you have to devote to working with them is entirely up to you.

Individuals should just shut up about him since he has a lot of strength and will perform well; all that is required is training; however, some people are simply lazy or don’t have the time to see how excellent they are at their craft.

A thoroughbred and a quarter horse cross, for those who are unfamiliar with the term, is an appendix.

One horse has more white on it than the other, yet they are both the same animal!

on the 22nd of June in the year 2014 Unlike other types of horses, Thoroughbreds are terrible barrel racers.

brion The 5th of August, 2013, is a Friday.

As a result, they will have difficulty getting near to the barrels due to their very lengthy legs.

Unless you plan on getting near to the barrels, they’re OK for barrel racing. However, they are often more suitable for English riding. When it comes to barrel racing, quarter horses are the best breed. That is an undeniably true statement.

What is Barrel Racing

In case you’ve ever been to a rodeo, you may have observed that the most of the competitions are dominated by men. Sporting events like as roping, steer wrestling, and the popular riding broncos as they buck furiously are all popular with males. Barrels racing, on the other hand, is a women’s only rodeo activity in which ladies on horses charge at full speed around three barrels in a clover pattern. Image courtesy of Steppinstars and Pixabay. A barrel race is characterized by the use of three barrels placed in a triangular form.

Riders compete against one another to see who can complete the course around the barrels and return to the starting line in the shortest amount of time.

Barrel Racing Horses

Anyone who has attended a rodeo may have observed that the majority of the competitions are dominated by men. Man-dominated activities such as roping, steer wrestling, and the popular attraction of riding broncos while they buck and charge are all popular among males today. Women on horses charge at full speed in a clover pattern around three barrels in barrel racing, which is the only rodeo sport reserved exclusively for women. Steppinstars and Pixabay are both credited with the photo. Barrels are positioned in a triangular form for the purpose of a barrel racing.

Riders compete against one another to see who can complete the circuit of barrels and return to the starting line in the shortest amount of time.

10 Barrel Racing Horse Breeds

Photograph courtesy of jacotakepics and Shutterstock. Quarter horses are the preferred breed for barrel racers of all levels. All of the top professionals are presently competing to win with barrel horses. Horses of this caliber are extremely quick, with some capable of reaching speeds in excess of 55 miles per hour. As a result, they are the quickest horses in the planet. A thoroughbred’s top speed has only been measured at 44 miles per hour, and the typical horse runs at just 27 miles per hour.

They’re also highly nimble creatures, allowing them to perform the tight turns required for barrel racing with ease and with relative ease.


Image courtesy of serkan-ankara and Pixabay.com Thoroughbreds are often the first horses that spring to mind when people think about racehorses. In important races such as the Kentucky Derby, Thoroughbreds are the horses of choice, and this is especially true. Thoroughbreds can sustain their pace for longer periods of time than Quarter Horses, despite the fact that they are not as quick as Quarter Horses in short bursts. However, in a short barrel race, this is not as big of an advantage as it formerly was.

Thoroughbreds may still make excellent barrel racing horses, because to their incredible speed and stamina. Also, they’ve been crossed with Quarter Horses, producing what’s known as an Appendix Quarter Horse, which is well-known for being a brilliant barrel racer.


Image courtesy of olgaru79/Shutterstock.com Appaloosas are well-known for being adaptable horses with exceptional stamina and endurance. Although endurance isn’t a significant element in a barrel race, these horses are also extremely quick, which is beneficial in any racing type. Furthermore, as the breed was being saved from extinction at the end of the nineteenth century, they were mixed with Quarter Horses, which gave them many of the same characteristics that make them excellent barrel racers.

Because of their pleasant temperaments, they are frequently employed as household horses or even as riding horses for youngsters.

4.Paint Horse

Image courtesy of Vera Zinkova of Shutterstock. Paint horses are frequently connected with Native Americans, owing to the breed’s distinctive colour, which was a favorite of theirs. The color pattern exhibited by a Paint Horse produces a type of natural camouflage that Native Americans regarded as highly valuable. However, these horses possessed a variety of other desirable characteristics as well. Consider, for example, that one of the distinguishing traits of Paint Horses is their innate intelligence.

They are strong horses that can accelerate to high speeds in a short period of time, which is ideal for regaining speed after turning a tight bend around a barrel or other obstacle.


Image courtesy of kudybadorota and Pixabay. Mustangs are wild horses that roam freely throughout parts of the United States. They are small, fast, and agile horses that typically weigh less than 1000 pounds, making them a good choice for beginners. Occasionally, the Bureau of Land Management roundups a large number of these Mustangs in order to prevent overpopulation, and then sells them at a low price to anyone who is interested. When it comes to barrel racing, wild horses require a great deal of training before they can be used in the sport.

Of course, every Mustang is unique, and there is no guarantee that any particular specimen will turn out to be a great barrel racer after a little instruction.


Image courtesy of rihaij and Pixabay. Arabians are natural-born racehorses who have succeeded in a wide range of horse racing disciplines. They’re tremendously swift, and they have incredible endurance.

Arabians also have light frames, which makes it easier for them to perform the tight bends that are necessary in a barrel racing competition. Aside from their physical characteristics, Arabians are also exceptionally clever animals that can be educated to acquire almost any skill or subject.

7.Australian Stock Horse

According to the Australian Stock Horse Society, the Australian Stock Horse may be the most adaptable horse on the planet due to its versatility. The fact that they have calm demeanors as well as high levels of intellect means that they can be trained for almost any purpose. They’re also well-known for their outstanding athletic abilities. These are quick, nimble horses that can compete in a variety of racing events, including barrel racing, with relative ease.


Image courtesy of Makarova Viktoria/Shutterstock.com Affectionately known as Friesians, these magnificent horses are readily identifiable by their long, flowing manes and tails, as well as by the hair around their feet, which gives the impression that the horse is wearing boots. Friesians are not only beautiful to look at, but they are also excellent to train due to their eagerness to learn and their high levels of intellect. These are little but strong horses with a lot of muscle, which may help them avoid damage in such a hard riding sport as equestrian.

9.Pony of the Americas

A Pony of the Americas, sometimes known as a POA, is a type of horse that is slightly smaller than other breeds, standing between 11 and 14 hands in height. They have a similar appearance to Appaloosas, albeit they are slightly smaller in stature. Those who want to become barrel racers but have not yet reached maturity will find them to be the ideal size, and they are frequently utilized for just that purpose. In rodeos all around the country, these ponies have shown themselves to be capable barrel racers for teenagers and little riders.

10.Grade Horses

Grade Horses are not a distinct breed in the traditional sense. Due to the fact that they’re sort of like mutts with no known paternity, they may be crosses of almost anything. Most equestrian sports have tight laws that only purebred horses are allowed to compete, however barrel racing does not have the same restrictions, therefore grade horses can still compete in barrel racing. You never know whether a Grade Horse would be appropriate for barrel racing unless you try him out on the track. They might have gotten their genetics from any number of different breeds at some point in the past.


For a variety of reasons, barrel racing is a unique sport. It differs significantly from other forms of horse racing in that agility and acceleration are rewarded more highly than maximum speed, though the quickest sprinters are still likely to win the competition. To come out on top in a barrel racing, you must have a high level of concentration, agility, and quickness. In addition, it is the only sport in professional rodeo that is exclusively for women.

Despite the fact that Quarter Horses tend to dominate the race, there is still space for other breeds to enter and establish themselves. You’re on the lookout for new unusual horse breeds, right? Take a look at these:

  • What Horse Breeds Are Used by the Police Department? (With Illustrations)
  • 7 Australian Horse Breeds (with Pictures)
  • 8 Greek Horse Breeds (with Pictures)

The featured image is courtesy of Pixabay user Brigitte, who creates bespoke works of art from your images.

Best Barrel Racing Horse Breeds

*This post may include affiliate links, which means that I may get a compensation if you make a purchase after clicking on one of the links I give (at no extra cost to you). Because I am an Amazon Associate, I receive money when people make eligible purchases. Please see mydisclaimer for more information on this subject. Horse riders compete in barrel racing, in which they must complete a triangular circuit around three barrels as quickly as possible in the shortest amount of time. This sport is characterized by its agility and speed: A cloverleaf pattern is created by the riders riding around the barrels at top speed, without touching or knocking down any of the barrels, with the winner often determined by a difference of hundreds or thousands or even millions of a second between them.

However, when it comes to selecting the most appropriate or interesting horse breed for practicing and competing in the sport, barrel racers have a plethora of options, ranging from Appaloosas and Arabians to Mustangs and Thoroughbreds.


9 Barrel Racing Breeds

The fact that Quarter Horses are considered to be the greatest breed for barrel racing is due to a variety of factors. Quarter horses have excellent temperaments and are very straightforward to teach, especially for beginners. Quarter Horses, on the other hand, are developed for speed, which is especially crucial when traveling small distances. Quarter horses are also extremely nimble and have the ability to spring into action at a moment’s notice. Quarter horses are short and stocky, having powerful necks and bodies, as well as muscular and solid hindquarters.

Barrel racing puts all of the qualities that Quarter Horses have been bred to have to the test, which is why these horses thrive under the pressure of the competition.



Among Western riders, Appaloosas are extremely popular in a variety of disciplines including barrel racing. Their most distinguishing qualities are their spotted coat and white sclera (the white region surrounding the iris in the eyes), which are their most distinguishing characteristics. Other distinguishing characteristics include their striped hooves and a tail and mane that might be a little thinner at times. Aside from being compassionate and adaptable horses, Appaloosas are also incredibly keen to learn.

Horses like the Appaloosa are derived from tall and thin Spanish horses that arrived in America in the 16th century and were popular among cowboys.

Using breeding procedures developed by the Nez Percé Indians in the 18th century, and subsequently incorporating bloodlines from Quarter Horses and Arabians into the Appaloosa horse breed, the quick and versatile Appaloosa horse of today was created. (source). (source). (source).


Arabians are very sensitive and clever horses. They have a high level of intelligence. Despite the fact that Arabian horses are not generally bred for barrel racing, a well trained Arabian horse may perform admirably in the sport. This is due to Arabians’ small stature, which offers them a distinct edge when negotiating the barrels during a racing competition. Furthermore, as the Arabian Horse Association states, “Racing is in the heart and soul of every Arabian horse,” which makes Arabians an excellent choice for anyone seeking speed as well as the racing spirit necessary for the sport of Arabian horse racing.

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The Friesian horse is a breed of horse that originated in the Netherlands. Friesians are distinguished by their striking black coat, dense mane and tail, and lengthy fetlock hair, among other traits. For example, according to theFriesian Horse Association of North America, some of the characteristics that distinguish Friesians as excellent riding horses are their “intelligence, eagerness to learn, and readiness to perform.” Friesians are also well-built, having compact and strong bodies and shorter legs than other breeds of dog.

(According to the source) (source).

Paint Horse

Paint Horses are a stunning sight to behold in any race, and their brightly colored coats make them stand out even more. Coat colors for Paint Horses can include any combination of white with bay, chocolate, palomino, or black as well as a variety of other colors. Paint Horses have a powerful build, with a compact and firm musculature, which makes them an excellent choice for barrel racing because of their size and strength. Paint horses are also extremely sociable, adaptable, and trainable, which is why they are often a wonderful choice for first-time riders who want to learn the ropes.

Australian Stock Horse

This magnificent breed possesses nearly all of the attributes that would make it an excellent candidate for barrel racing. The Australian Stock Horse Society touts Australian Stock Horses as “probably the most adaptable horse in the world,” according to its website. This is owing to the intelligence and placid demeanor of these horses, which are combined with their physical aptitude and stamina to produce such results.

Grade Horses

Grade horses are horses whose genealogy or parentage is unknown to the rider. Not only does this not imply that grade horses are members of an unidentified breed, but it also implies that the horses’ pedigree is unknown, that they may have been the consequence of unintended mating, and that they were not registered by their breeder as a result of their condition. In contrast to certain sports, where only purebred horses are permitted to compete, grade horses are permitted to compete in barrel racing competitions.

And, as with the other breeds on this list, the general personality and configuration of the horse is more essential than the breed itself: a desire to learn, agility, speed, and a sound racing physique are all characteristics that are valued in racing horses. (source). (source).


Mustangs are feral horses, which means they are free to roam the countryside at will. Nonetheless, in the United States, the Bureau of Land Management is in charge of gathering up and adopting Mustang horses in order to keep their numbers under control. Mustang horses, when properly taught, may be extremely effective in a variety of applications and sports, including barrel racing. Mustangs are also smaller horses, weighing up to 800 pounds at their full maturity, making them an excellent alternative for smaller riders or youngsters to ride.




Thoroughbreds have the potential to be superb barrel racing horses if they are properly trained. When compared to barrel racing, Thoroughbreds are bred for speed and to race over long distances, whereas the cloverleaf pattern of barrel racing is bred for speed and to race over short distances. Their hot-blooded nature means that they may be extremely lively and difficult to control for untrained or rookie riders. Thoroughbreds, on the other hand, are also hardworking and extremely clever, which, when combined with their inherent agility and build for speed, makes them a thrilling choice for barrel racing competitions.


How to Pick a Good Barrel Racing Horse

A few crucial features must be present in a good barrel racing horse: they must be nimble, swift, have the proper conformation, and be ready to learn. More significantly, they must take pleasure in the obstacles that the sport presents. When completing the pattern around the barrels, agility and speed are essential in order to make the tight bends that are required: A horse must be capable of not just navigating these curves intelligently, but also doing it at top speed! Then there’s conformation.

The general proportions of the horse, including the length of its bones and the angles of its joints, are referred to as conformation.

As a result, experts feel that even more essential than the horse’s breed is the horse’s mentality, or his heart, which will have an influence on whether or not the horse can develop into a great barrel racing horse.


Best Barrel Racing Pedigrees

Rider/Horse Breed Earnings
Rider: Nellie MillerRafter W Minnie Reba Quarter Horse $154,610.50 – 28 Rodeos
Rider: Hailey Kinsel LockwoodDM Sissy Hayday Thunder Stones Quarter Horse $148,866.64 – 49 Rodeos
Rider: Lisa LockhartRosas Cantina CC An Oakie With Cash Prime Diamond Quarter Horse $146,351.65 – 47 Rodeos
Rider: Shali Lord-riderFreckles Ta Fame Quarter Horse $111,775.59 – 55 Rodeos
Rider: Brittany Pozzi TonozziBabe on The Chase Ima Famous Babe KissKiss BangBang Quarter Horse $105,503.40 – 67 Rodeos
Rider: Stevi HillmanCuatro FameMCM Imasharpguy Quarter Horse $105,334.82 – 76 Rodeos
Rider: Emily MillerNamgis D 33 Namgis D 56 Namgis D 35 Quarter Horses $98,144.73 – 79 Rodeos
Rider: Jessica Routier Firey Miss West Quarter Horse $96,581.90 – 54 Rodeos
Rider: Dona Kay RuleHigh Valor Bullseye Bullion Quarter Horse $96,507.49 – 64 Rodeos
Rider: Ericka Nelson Goodfrenchmanfriday PC Cash Quarter Horse $93,433.24 – 65 Rodeos
Rider: Ivy Conrado-SaebensKN Fabs Gift of Fame Quarter Horse $93,269.24 – 49 Rodeos
Rider: Amberleigh MooreCP Dark Moon Blue Duck Down Quarter Horse $93,059.22
Rider: Jennifer SharpKR Famous Tequilla Mitos Cutter Quarter Horse $91,754.45 – 94 Rodeos
Rider: Cheyenne WimberleyKN Fabs Mist of Fame VQ Sucker Punch Dash Ta Suz Quarter Horse $90,360.85 – 89 Rodeos
Rider: Lacinda RoseRR Meradas Real Deal Sheza A Mazie James Famous Illusion Quarter Horse $88,935.85 – 73 Rodeos


When learning a new sport and selecting a horse, it is essential to examine a wide range of sources to ensure success.

These are the sources that we consulted when writing this article.

6 Best Horse Breeds for Barrel Racing

Barrel racing is a physically difficult sport that requires both horses and riders to perform well. This thrilling rodeo sport requires horses to be strong, athletic, and nimble in order for them to perform well. But, which horse breeds are the most suitable for barrel racing? The Quarter horse, Paint horse, Mustang, Appaloosa, Thoroughbred, and Pony of the Americas are the finest barrel racing horse breeds, with the Quarter horse, Paint horse, Mustang, Appaloosa, Thoroughbred, and Pony of the Americas being the second best.

What Makes a Good Barrel Racing Horse?

A good barrel horse will be swift, nimble, athletic, and well-balanced, among other characteristics. It is critical for a barrel horse to have good conformation in order to win races. When it comes to barrel racing, it’s all about completing a cloverleaf pattern around three barrels in the shortest amount of time. For a horse to be capable of this, it must have excellent speed and the ability to turn on a dime. For the horses to successfully finish the pattern without making any mistakes, they must be well-coordinated.

A barrel horse with straight legs, nice feet, small cannon bones, low hocks, and a short topline is an illustration of what an ideal barrel horse should look like.

Barrel horses require time to mature and must be ready to learn in order to be successful.

Riders must be able to communicate well with their horses in order to be successful in their competition.

What is a Good Barrel Racing Time?

For experienced racers, a barrel racing time of less than 18 seconds is regarded to be an excellent time. The majority of riders, on the other hand, will be between 15 and 30 seconds. The timings for barrel racing are computed to the hundredths of a second. When it comes to sports, one minor error might mean the difference between winning and losing. In order to run a decent time, you must be precise and quick. Each barrel that is knocked over adds five seconds to the clock. Carlee Pierce and her horse Dillion achieved the world record for the quickest barrel racing time with a timing of 13.46 seconds, which is still the current record.

Best Horse Breeds for Barrel Racing

Image courtesy of S.M / Shutterstock.com Quarter horses are the pinnacle of excellent barrel horses, and they are the dominant force in the world’s most renowned barrel events. This fierce rodeo competition is made possible by their athletic but solid frame, which lets them to stand out from the crowd. With the ability to run a quarter-mile faster than any other horse breed, Quarter horses have an advantage in competition. In reality, many of the most successful barrel racing Quarter horses are bred on the racing circuit.

In terms of conformation, a good Quarter horse possesses all the characteristics of a successful barrel horse.

They also have good muscling, straight legs, and powerful hindquarters. They also have pleasant dispositions and a willingness to please, which gives them the ideal mindset for the sports they participate in. Also see 9 popular native American horse breeds for further information.

2. Paint Horse

/ Shutterstock.com Thanks to their robust, athletic physique, Paint horses make outstanding barrel racing horses. They are swift and nimble, allowing them to finish patterns with ease. Paints are reliable horses, with good overall demeanors. When it comes to barrel racing, their well-balanced bodies and muscular hindquarters are a big asset. Paints are compact, with powerful legs, muscular and strong-boned, appearing in a range of distinct gorgeous coat patterns.

3. Appaloosa

Shutterstock.com image courtesy of Marie Charouzova Appaloosas are a versatile breed that are well-known for their lovely spotted coats. They are barrel horses who excel in competition because of their speed and athleticism. They have the mentality to succeed in the show ring because of their amiable dispositions, even temperaments, and readiness to please. They are robust horses with exceptional stamina, agility, and athleticism, among other qualities. Appaloosas are known for having stocky physique, with compact, muscular bodies and powerful legs.

4. Mustang

Shutterstock.com image courtesy of Dennis W Donohue Wild mustangs, who graze freely across thousands of acres of wilderness in the American West, are a symbol of the American West. The Bureau of Land Management, however, gathers up Mustangs every year in order to maintain herd numbers, and then offers them for adoption to those who are interested. Ponies like Mustangs are excellent mounts for a variety of Western disciplines, including barrel racing, due to their toughness. They are swift and nimble horses, despite the fact that they are frequently on the smaller side.

Mustangs come in a variety of shapes and sizes, but the majority of them have muscular builds, compact bodies, and short backs.

5. Thoroughbred

Horsemen / Image courtesy of Shutterstock.com Despite the fact that thoroughbreds are not the first horses that spring to mind when thinking of barrel racing, they really perform pretty well in the sport. Famous for their speed, these athletic horses have everything it takes to be successful barrel racers on the open road. A large number of OTTBs (off-the-track Thoroughbreds) are making the move to a career as barrel horses. At the Thoroughbred Makeover, the T.I.P. Barrel Racing Championships are hosted by the Jockey Club’s Thoroughbred Incentive Program, which is administered by the Jockey Club.

Thoroughbreds are distinguished by their height, athleticism, and lean, muscular frame.

Quarter horses are the most popular of them.

Due to the fact that Thoroughbreds are hot-blooded, they frequently require a more experienced rider. However, with the proper training, they have the potential to develop into outstanding barrel racing horses.

6. Pony of the Americas

Pony of the Americas are little and brightly colored, making them stand out in the show ring. These adaptable ponies are excellent mounts for young riders because of their versatility. It all started with a hybrid between a Shetland pony and an Appaloosa/Arabian cross, which became known as Pony of the Americas (POA). POA genetics were then blended with bloodlines from other breeds such as the Thoroughbred, Quarter Horse, and Welsh Pony as time went on. With a delicate head and powerful frames like Quarter horses, this little spotted horse breed has the coloration of Appaloosas and the temperament of Arabians.

They make excellent barrel racing mounts since they are both dependable and speedy.


The optimal age for a barrel racing horse is generally believed to be between 5 and 16 years old. Horses will be in their optimum physical condition and have gained valuable experience to fulfill the rigors of the sport at this point.

How Much Does a Good Barrel Racing Horse Cost?

On average, barrel racing horses may cost anywhere from $2,000 to $40,000, depending on their quality. Some top-quality barrel racing horses, on the other hand, can cost $50,000 or more. Prices will vary according on the breed, age, training, show record, conformation, and pedigree of the animal.

How Many Hands Should a Barrel Horse Be?

Barrel horses are available at a variety of heights. Many barrel horses stand between 14 and 15.2 hands tall, depending on the breed. Barrels racing, on the other hand, can be competed in by ponies and even draft horses. Even though it is unusual, people have competed in barrel racing using Clydesdales in the past.

What is the Best Horse for Barrel Racing? • Horsezz

There are several horse breeds that are appropriate for barrel racing, including the Thoroughbred, the Appaloosa, and the Quarter Horse, among others. Each of the breeds has its own set of characteristics that distinguishes it as the finest horse to use in barrel racing. Before you purchase a new horse, we urge that you learn everything you can about the most popular horse breeds for this Western hobby before you do. We’ve included a list of the specific features of equines that you could select to be the barrel racing horse.

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1. The Quarter Horse

When it comes to barrel racing, many people consider the Quarter Horse to be the best horse on the planet. And it’s no surprise, considering the horse breed’s claim to fame about its distinguishing characteristics. The Quarter Horseis one of the oldest horse breeds in existence, having originated in the United States. They are frequently utilized as racing horses for short distances due to the exceptional performance of the animals. The horse has Thoroughbred forebears in its blood, which means it has inherited the horse’s most important characteristics.

Horse Breed Overview

  • The horse’s conformation is as follows: the head is tiny and elegant, the forehead is broad, and the profile is straight. There is a lot of muscle in the body, the chest is large, and the hindquarters are rounded. (14-16 hands)
  • Height: 56-64 inches (14-16 hands)
  • 950-1000 pounds (430-540 kg) is the recommended weight. The average life expectancy is 25 years. Speed: up to 55 miles per hour
  • Red, chestnut, brown, bay, and black are the most common coat colors, although there is a vast spectrum of other colors available as well. The soft stroll and fluid gaits of the breed are well-liked by people. It’s a fantastic racer who is also suitable for horse shows, English and Western riding competitions, and as a draft animal. The average price is $10,000.


  • Chronic lameness is a prevalent occurrence. prone to episodes of paralysis on a regular basis

2. The Thoroughbred

The Thoroughbred horse breed is a popular choice among equestrian enthusiasts.

It is well-known for its excellent combination of gracefulness and rapidity. Because of this, it is frequently employed in horse racing, jumping, and eventing. Because it was developed in England, this breed has gained widespread popularity around the world, notably in the United States.

Horse Breed Overview

  • Its physical characteristics include a well-chiseled head and a long, beautiful neck. The body is short and thin, with a deep, wide chest, and the coat is silky and silky. The limbs are long and thin, yet they are powerful. 64 inches (16 hands) in height
  • 1000 pounds (450 kg) in weight Life expectancy ranges from 25 and 28 years. Speed: 35 miles per hour
  • Hues: The most frequent colors are bay, chestnut, gray, and black
  • However, other colors are available. Known for its courage, speed, and athleticism, the breed has earned a reputation as one of the best. The majority of the time, it is utilized for displaying, dressage, and racing. The average price is $10,000.


  • A people-oriented breed with a high level of energy
  • Excellent for racing.


Because of its eye-catching coat pattern, the Appaloosa is a popular choice among equestrians around. When it comes to cattle competitions, this breed is quite popular in the United States, particularly in the West. As a result, the breed is sometimes referred to as a stock horse. However, you may come up against the Appaloosa horse in a number of English competitions as well as in western events. Because the equine has been crossbred with a variety of different horse breeds, such as the American Quarter Horse and the Arabian Horse, a diverse range of body types can be found in the animal.

Horse Breed Overview

  • The horse’s physical characteristics include a strong physique, alert ears, and a long neck. The spottedcoat design immediately draws the viewer’s attention. The skin has a mottled appearance, and the hooves are striped. (14-16 hands)
  • Height: 56-64 inches (14-16 hands)
  • The following weights:950-1250 pounds (430-570 kg)
  • The average life expectancy is 30 years. Speed: 30 miles per hour
  • Various colors are used in the coat, including the primary color and the spotted skin. Bay, chestnut, gray, black, and dun are the most often encountered foundation colors. The markings on the horse are generally darker than the base color
  • The breed is highly regarded for the intelligence of its horses. Furthermore, they are fairly sociable and may be ridden by children without causing concern
  • The Appaloosa may be found participating in both English and Western activities, and barrel racing is no exception. The horse may be used for endurance and trail riding, among other activities. The average cost is $6,000


  • It is suitable for beginners. Colorful and quick-witted
  • A great combination.


The Paint Horse got its name because of its coat, which is a mixture of pinto spotting and darker areas. The horse was produced through a crossbreeding program with the American Quarter Horse. Thus, the distinctive strong build and large chest of the father were passed down to the son. Because of the breed’s excellent sense of balance, it is the most suitable horse for barrel racing applications. The traditional Paint Horse’s coat contains a series of dark and light dots, which correspond to the color patterns of the horse.

Horse Breed Overview

  • The horse’s physical characteristics include a powerful muscular physique, alert ears, and a long neck. Massive patches cover the majority of the coat’s body. Because of their low gravity centers, they are excellent in balancing
  • Height:56-60 inches (14-15 hands)
  • Weight:950-1200 pounds (430-540 kg)
  • Height:56-60 inches (14-15 hands)
  • Life expectancy is 30 years
  • Maximum speed is 60 miles per hour
  • Colors: A white background with black, bay, or chestnut dots is the most typical pattern. Color patterns have particular names, such as tobiano, overo, and solid, which describe their appearance. The horse is really lovely and elegant in its movements. Furthermore, these critters are amiable and easy-going in nature. The breed is extensively employed in Western pleasure, barrel racing, and English show jumping, among other activities. The average cost is $6,000


  • Calm and approachable
  • Exceptional color pattern
  • Appropriate for all riders
  • And


  • Predisposed to the potentially deadly White syndrome
  • Periodic paralysis is prevalent.

5. The Arabian

The Arabian Horse, often known as the Arab, is one of the oldest breeds of horse, and it is currently found all over the world. It is well-known for its incredible stamina, intellect, attractiveness, and devotion, among other qualities. That is why these light horses were utilized to increase the durability, endurance, and speed of other breeds by combining them with them. With its intriguing characteristics, it is considered to be a superb flexible breed for amateur and expert riding sessions, equestrian competitions, and selection.

Horse Breed Overview

  • It has a tiny head with broad nostrils, huge expressive eyes, and short ears, which give it a cartoonish appearance. The neck is long and arched, and the shoulders are broad. The back is short, yet it is muscular and robust. The limbs are long and powerful, and the hooves are sturdy. Height: 60 inches (15 hands)
  • Weight: 60 pounds Weight: 800 to 1000 pounds (350 to 450 kg)
  • A person’s life expectancy is 25-30 years. Speed: 35 miles per hour
  • Hues: Grey, chestnut, bay, and black are the most popular colors used in the design. Because of its smooth and beautiful gaits, each movement is tidy and consistent, the breed is highly sought after. Because of its smooth and beautiful gaits, each movement is tidy and consistent, the breed is highly sought after. When it comes to Arabian horse activities, the most common ones are displaying, riding, and racing. The average price is $10,000.


  • Extremely long-lasting and quick
  • A breed with a lot of versatility
  • Intelligent and simple to understand


What is a Grade horse, and how does it differ from other horses? The Grade horse is a type of equine that has an unknown bloodline and was created via a process of selective breeding. This type of animal may develop in the situation of an unexpected or unintentional breeding in which the parents are not immediately identifiable. A grade horse may have some recognized breeding, but the horse’s whole lineage is kept secret from the public. The grade horse can be any color and can have a variety of distinguishing characteristics depending on the grade.

Making the decision to purchase a grade horse may result in a fantastic partner for participating in equestrian activities.


Barrel racing is an intriguing equestrian activity that should be taken into consideration. It necessitates the precision and determination of both you and your horse.

As a result, selecting the finest horse for barrel racing is critical in this situation. Examine all of the horse breeds available to choose which one will make the best mate. All of these horses are excellent choices, and they all have unique characteristics.

Best Horse Breeds for Barrel Racing

A exciting activity, barrel racing provides contestants with the opportunity to race for cash prizes. With local, regional, and national tournaments awarding hundreds to thousands of dollars in prize money, it is unquestionably one of the most lucrative horse contests in the world. Consider the following— Taci Bettis, the winner of the 2020 barrel racing championship, received $100,000 from the RFD-TV American Finals Rodeo after running the cloverleaf course in 14.848 seconds. Riders compete against the clock and must complete a “cloverleaf” pattern, which consists of three barrels arranged in a triangle, in order to win.

The first and second turns are made at the right-hand barrel, while the third turn is made at the left-hand barrel, which allows riders to turn and sprint back to the alleyway if they start at the right-hand barrel.

The barrel pattern

The distance between the barrels is determined by the size of the arena and the organization that is hosting the event. It is the official pattern defined by the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association (WPRA)that there should be 90 feet between the first and second barrels. Barrel one and barrel three are situated 60 feet apart from the timer, and there is a distance of 105 feet between them. The world record for the quickest standard pattern is held by a Brazilian horse and rider who ran a16.339 on their way to victory.

No one in the United States has yet to beat the time—the current record in the country is 16.479.

A rider’s time is increased by five seconds for each barrel that is knocked over.

Only registered horses are allowed to compete in breed associations.

Best horse breeds for barrel racing

Riders who want to be competitive in timed sports such as barrel racing need horses with a lot of speed, and the Quarter Horse is by far the most popular selection. At the time of the American Revolution, the stock breed was renowned for its lightning-fast pace in a quarter-mile race. It was an astounding 55 mph for the quarter horse who was the quickest on the course. Some of the world’s best runners begin their careers on a flat course. Aside from that, it’s not unusual for these horses to be descended from Thoroughbred sprinting bloodlines.

The quarter horse is classified as a stock horse, and as such, it falls under the same classification as Paint horses and Appaloosas.

All three of these breeds are closely related and have characteristics like as speed and handiness in common. Painting the horses and using Appaloosas to provide visual appeal; a splash of color adds an element of adrenaline as riders sprint around the course.

3 Other breeds for barrel racing

In competitive barrel racing, genetics and conformation can make a difference, but unlike other sports, there is a larger possibility of success if you have dedication, tenacity, and individual skill. Everyone’s horse is different, and there is a wide range of competitive levels that provide several potential for success. As an illustration, here is an example of another breed that can barrel race:

1. Thoroughbred

When most people think of Thoroughbreds, they typically picture them racing on a horse track. Whether a horse is retired from the track or just does not enjoy the flat track, barrel racing may be an excellent location for them to shine. Their natural desire to run makes them an excellent choice for barrel racing. There are two different body types for these horses, and their suitability with the event is influenced by which one they are. Long and lean athletes are the best performers in events such as the Kentucky Derby.

If you are considering purchasing a thoroughbred as a barrel mate, look for the following conformation characteristics:

  • Neck with a little sloping shoulder
  • Powerful hindquarters
  • Athletic physique with a compact build

2. Arabian

Arabians have an edge over larger-boned stock horses in terms of strength. Speed, strength, and agility are all characteristics of the light breed that make them an excellent partner for barrel racing. Cattlewoman Jennifer Cockrell qualified her Arabian horse for the World Championship Show of the National Barrel Horse Association while also competing in competitions sponsored by the 4-H and the National High School Rodeo Association. The gelding was her first barrel horse, and he was also the most cost-effective option for the family at the time.

“I began training my Arabian, and he performed admirably for me.

They may be quite competitive in terms of running times that are quite near to those of quarter horses, but it all depends on the horse.”

3. National Show Horse

Riders are occasionally taken by surprise by a breed that is not often associated with barrel racing. When Blair Cecil retired her National Show Horse “Sadie” from the show ring, she had hoped to breed her offspring. The mare participated in a variety of competitions in both English and Western disciplines. Cecil realized her horse needed work after the first year’s breeding failed to produce a calf. She had always wanted to work with barrels, so this was an exciting new experience for her. “I playfully tell people that the Arabian half of Sadie has the speed and endurance, and that the Saddlebred and the Arabian half is what whoas when I tell it to,” she added of the horse.

“Both breeds are tremendously clever, and they yearn to be given a purpose in life as well as the opportunity to learn new things.”

Be open minded

Many of the finest barrel racing riders like the Quarter Horse breed, but it’s always a good idea to be open to other possibilities. The ability and desire to race of a single horse might result in an unexpected surprise from a breed that is not normally linked with the sport of thoroughbred racing. The lone judge is the clock, and because it does not distinguish between breeds, it is feasible to team up with less popular breeds in order to win.

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