Welcome to Corpus Christi, Sable Emerson

Arkansas cowgirl Sable Emerson showed out during her first run inside the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas, winning the progressive performance and sending herself and "Lulu," to the Triple Crown of Rodeo Round.
Sable Emerson comptes in barrel racing in Corpus Christi.
Sable Emerson and Baby Im Famous won the second progressive performance of 2023 Rodeo Corpus Christi. Image courtesy WCRA by Bull Stock Media.

Sable Emerson and Baby Im Famous notched a performance win at Rodeo Corpus Christi on May 11, earning $1,600 and punching her ticket to the Triple Crown of Rodeo Round on Saturday with their 14.116-second run.

The Malvern, Arkansas, native has attended two WCRA Triple Crown of Rodeo events and she’s made them both count. In December 2022, Emerson made her first WCRA appearance AND Cowtown Coliseum debut at the the WCRA Cowtown Christmas Championships and qualified to the final round.

Now she’s done it again at Rodeo Corpus Christi. Her equine partner, Lulu, is a 2013 mare by JL Dash Ta Heaven and out of SheezGotchaBaby. x Strait to the Bank. Lulu was trained by Janna Brown and futuritied as a 5-year-old before Emerson purchased her.

For Lulu’s backstory and pedigree, click here.

“She was great tonight,” Emerson said. “When we bought her, I didn’t really think she’d be very good inside because she’s so big and she really likes to run outside because she just loves to run. But she’s been running so good lately. It’s kind of hard to not run her.” 

Emerson was able to take advantage of the open ride times in the arena to show Lulu where she would be heading that night. 

“She’s kind of quirky, so we have to get her in the arena a lot before I run her somewhere,” Emerson explained. “She gets scared. I don’t think she likes walls. It’s awesome that they let you do that (open ride times). She worked great. She kind of felt like she spun out a little bit on the third. So I’m hoping we can fix that, you know, and, and hopefully be even a little faster on Saturday.” 

Lulu has undoubtedly proven her worth to Emerson, and her natural love for being a barrel horse gives Emerson all the reason to believe in the mare. 

“When I go down the alleyway, I always tell myself to just trust (Lulu). Trust her, trust her, let her work. And I just try to stay out of her way. And we got to get in there this morning, she knew where the first barrel was and I literally just tried to put my hand down and let her do her thing because she loves to run barrels. She loves to run, and she loves to turn, so it’s a good combination.” 

Sable Emerson

Emerson is a fifth-generation pharmacist at her family’s Millers Drugstore, which makes it often difficult to slip away for long periods of time like the nature of rodeo asks of a contestant. The WCRA format makes it easier for Emerson to hit the road, but still, without her family, it wouldn’t be possible for her to go when she pleases.  

“We left after work last night, we left about 7 p.m. and got here at 5:15 this morning,” Emerson said. “So, you have a lot of late-night drives and luckily, I have a very, very supportive husband and family. They don’t send me off by myself. I don’t think I could have made it here by myself last night. I’m very thankful for them.” 

Lulu is going to get plenty of rest before Saturday night’s Triple Crown of Rodeo round.  

“Since she had such a long night last night, she’s going to get to rest tomorrow and then Saturday morning, I’ll take her back over there and just do some slow work,” Emerson said. “We like to just slow things back down and hopefully go do it again.” 

Joining Emerson in the short round is NFR qualifier Stephanie Fryar and “Frank,” who broke up the No. 2 tie between respected talent Jackie Jatzlau and Southeastern cowgirl Julie Goodrich to advance to Saturday.


  1. Sable Emerson, 14.116, $1,600 
  1. Stephanie Fryar, 14.251, $1,200 
  1. Jackie Jatzlau, 14.265, $600 
  1. Julie Goodrich, 14.265, $600 

Find full Rodeo Corpus Christi results at wcrarodeo.com