Closeness of families spurs on interest in rodeo

Hartney teenager says cowgirl lifestyle is everything to love

Inspired by Rachelle Boyes, who not only excelled at high school rodeo but also at professional barrel racing aboard her horse Chico, it wasn’t hard for a fellow Deleau family to get interested in rodeo.

“Growing up close to Rachelle it wasn’t hard to fall in love with riding and of course, barrel racing,” said Kally Bodin, a Grade 9 student at Hartney Collegiate. “Another great rodeo person I look up to is Sherri Ross of Elkhorn. Both of them encourage efforts, and assist wherever needed.”

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Parents Robyn and Kari Bodin bought the family’s first horse — a Welsh pony — for their daughter at the age of five, with larger mounts being added. It was a natural thing to do for Robyn, who was born and raised on a cattle farm in the southwestern region of Manitoba, where horses were regularly used and the cowboy life was lived.

This way of life was passed on to his children. Kally remembers watching her brother Reiden compete, and dreaming of the day she could join as a Grade 6 junior high member.

“Reiden was the Canadian champion for chute doggin’ in the summer of 2010 with the finals held in Virden,” said Kally. “Today, he is among the alumni, who have their parents to thank for backing our rodeo endeavours.”

With close to four complete years, Kally presently competes in four of five events of which females are eligible to compete in. To her, she has no one favourite, but says breakaway roping is a little higher in the standings than barrel racing, pole bending and goat tying.

Timed events take a team — a horse and rider — and for this MHSRA member, she says that Lucy, her quarter-horse, loves her job, so it makes her task much easier to accomplish.

Heading into the second half of the 2016-17 rodeo season, Kally sits within the top 10 in the HS Girls All Around standings, and third in breakaway roping. Overall results can be found at www.mhsra.ca.

“Competition in the Cinch Division of the MHSRA plays an important role in my life… I love what I do,” said Kally. “Being around horses teaches responsibility and it takes hard work to reach one’s goals.”

Earning the Rookie of the Year Runner-Up title in 2013-14, Kally says this about the sport: “In the arena we are all there to compete and do our best, but outside of the arena we are best of friends. I love everything about rodeo life, as it is making myself a better person. Rodeo friendships and the many lessons I have learned are a very important part of my future.”

Kally has also enjoyed four years with the Horses R Us 4-H Club, prior to joining the MHSRA. School sports include volleyball, basketball and curling, and she also does figure and synchronized skating.

Known for her sportsmanship, Kally plans on furthering her education in equine science after graduation, at a rodeo college out west.

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