Bikini barrel racing is an adaptation of the popular rodeo event barrel racing. However, in this form on the event all the riding is done by women – in bikinis. The sport is now becoming increasingly popular with crowds at rodeos around the country.Barrel racing was originally started by women in Texas who wanted to take part in rodeos. The main competitors in barrel racing are women but men and children do also take part. The basic idea is to race a horse around three large metal oil barrels set out in a clover leaf shape in the fastest time possible. This requires tremendous agility and speed as the horses take very sharp corners at steep angles.
Performing the event in bikinis developed gradually over a number of years. Given the incredibly warm weather in the areas where rodeos were happening, women competitors often stripped down to their bikini tops while they waited for their event or watched other activities. As several women started racing in their bikini tops the idea grew in popularity. Eventually, racing in a full bikini developed into an event in itself. Bikini barrel races are now sponsored at many large rodeo events.
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A woman in a white bikini rides a Palomino horse
Racing competitors have traditionally had the added protection and security of heavy denim jeans in addition to chaps and thick jackets. However, those taking part in bikini barrel races are far more exposed. Their legs, chests and breast are all un-protected. They only wear a bikini and stetson hat. There have even been examples of women’s boobs falling out of their tops while they race. Yet incredibly, the speed at which women ride the course is barely affected. They still ride at very fast speeds and take corners just as quickly and sharply as fully clothed riders, often finishing in very respectable times. This makes those riding in their bikinis arguably just as brave and skilled as fully-clothed competitors.
Taking a corner in a bikini top
Bikini barrel racing woman holds on tight
Dirt is kicked up as a bikini barrel racer goes round a corner
A woman kicks on her horse as she heads for the finish
Riding in bikinis also gives female competitors a chance to show off their bodies at rodeos – which are often watched by large numbers of men. For this reason, bikini barrel racing has grown quickly into a very popular event. However, there is also controversy in the barrel racing community about the extent to which young girls are being given negative messages about the importance of displaying their bodies. Concerns have also been raised that barrel racing is a serious sport which should not be trivialised in this way. Many women say that they don’t want to see other women racing in their bikinis. For this reason, there is some debate about whether bikini barrel racing should be promoted.
Bikini barrel racing differs from nude and naked horse riding. Barrel racing is a sport where different women compete against each other. However, nude horse riding is done entirely for pleasure by men and women who would like to heighten the sensations of riding and being unclothed in nature.