Hailey Kinsel, Halyn Lide Take 2024 NWSSR Title Back to Texas

Halyn Lide proved she and "Keeper," have what it takes to hang with the big guns when she split the Denver win with Hailey Kinsel and Sister in 2024.
Hailey Kinsel and Halyn Lide 2024 Denver barrel racing
Halyn Lide and Hailey Kinsel are the 2024 NWSSR co-champions. CBarC Photography.

On Saturday, Jan. 20, Texas cowgirls Halyn Lide and Hailey Kinsel became co-champions of the National Western Stock Show Rodeo in Denver, kicking their 2024 winter rodeo barrel racing seasons off on the right foot.

Click here for full NWSSR results, payout and tournament information.

@barrelracingdotcom

Denver got DIRTY tough this week, but when it was all said and done, Hailey Kinsel and DM Sissy Hayday ended up the co-champions of the National Western Stock Show & Rodeo after turning in identical 14.73’s with Halyn Lide and Jettin Ta Heaven in the 2024 barrel racing. Link in bio for full results, and story to follow. #BarrelRacing #Cowgirl #HaileyKinsel #nationalwesternstockshow #Rodeo

♬ Dirrty (feat. Redman) – Christina Aguilera

Hailey Kinsel and DM Sissy Hayday, “Sister,” rocked the NWSSR coliseum during her second trip to Denver every chance she had. The Cotulla, Texas, lady kicked off her bracket at the tail end of the progressive round by setting an arena record—on the 2024 pattern, which measured up just a few feet shorter than in previous years—in 14.63 seconds. She then returned to clock a 14.78 in Round 2 to clock the fastest in her performance once again and lead Bracket 7 to the Semifinals. In the overall placings, Kinsel won the first round of the tournament across all eight brackets, earning $3,667, then split sixth in the second round, worth $1,036.

On Saturday, Kinsel’s 13.84 earned $2,126 for a second-place finish and earned her a spot in Sunday’s Finals. The $4,257 she and Lide both won put her Denver earnings to a totaled $11,086.

Kinsel’s return to Denver in 2024 after a four-year hiatus from NWSSR wasn’t by chance.

“I came back because of the dirt,” Kinsel said. “After watching it last year, I said ‘Okay, I can come back.’ Little did I know, (NWSSR) hired a new tractor driver in 2022, and he’s been able to work with that ground and get it great. I’m so impressed with how much they’ve improved it.”

The four-time world champion has never been scared to make bold statements regarding ProRodeo events, and she let BarrelRacing.com know she’s going to help push the committee to commit even further to great ground conditions, recommending a drag halfway through the 12-woman in the future to advocate for not only Sister, but other barrel racers and their equine counterparts.

“I feel like my job here is to represent not only Sister, but the other girls who aren’t in the position to speak up or don’t have the confidence” Kinsel said. “But, if I’m going to bring the highest earning barrel horse of all time to your rodeo, I would really like to see you care about the horse. Sometimes, that takes making hard statements, and I hope I can do it with enough respect for the rodeos themselves. In the end, if we can work together, great things can happen, just like what we saw in Denver this year.”

Hailey Kinsel

Wait….did Denver pay more money to barrel racers this year? It sure did. See how much NWSSR’s added money increased in 2024.

Halyn Lide may be a less recognizable name on the ProRodeo trail, but WCRA fans have been watching this cowgirl bank thousands each year at co-sanctioned events. The China Spring, Texas, mom and barrel horse trainer decided to try her hand at the 2024 winter rodeos after earning her way in by her top 30 ranking in the 2023 WPRA World Standings. She clocked a 14.78 and 14.99, respectively, in the first two rounds of her bracket to finish first and third in the performances. Her first paycheck for $709 came in Saturday’s Semifinals, where she grabbed the final qualifying spot in a tough bracket that saw Tessa Arnold’s 14.50 top Kinsel’s arena record and Lide’s 14.84 finish fourth. When the chips were down, Lide stayed ultra-consistent, which paid off in the Finals by way of $4,257, bringing her overall event earnings to $4,966.

@barrelracingdotcom

When the curtain closed on Denver yesterday, it was Halyn Lide and Jettin Ta Heaven, “Keeper,” that earned the title of #nationalwesternstockshow Rodeo co-champion with #HaileyKinsel and DM Sissy Hayday, “Sister,” turning in identical 14.73’s. You can hear from both Kinsel and Lide on this week’s episode of The Rundown on @the.moneybarrel Link in bio for full results, and story to follow. #BarrelRacing #Cowgirl #HalynLide #ProRodeo

♬ Paralyzer – Finger Eleven

“I don’t win every day, so that’s kind of fun,” Lide said after the win.

The 12-year-old gelding, Jettin Ta Heaven, known as “Keeper,” has lived up to Lide’s expectations, and more. His dam, Zeros Gypsy Jet carried Lide through wins in high school and college, until an injury cut her career short. Around the same time, Lide was watching young stallion JL Dash Ta Heaven light up futurity, then derby competitions. She decided she had to have one of his progeny, and the next year, Lide’s foal was on the ground.

“My husband started him at 2,” Lide explained. “He told me ‘I think this one’s a keeper,” so we started calling him Keeper.”

A decade later and Keeper is still around, making Lide and her family’s dreams into reality. Looking ahead, Lide will be taking Keeper and another JL Dash Ta Heaven down the road to see if they can continue to have ProRodeo success in 2024.

Listen to the full interview with Lide and Kinsel on this week’s episode of The Rundown. Looking for full NWSSR event results? Click here.

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