TUCSON, AZ – Barrel racer Steely Steiner and her mare Hillbilly Bombshell entered their first La Fiesta De Los Vaqueros rodeo in Tucson, Arizona, stopping the clock for an average of 34.61 on two runs to win the rodeo.
The 20-year-old from Weatherford, Texas, was as excited to have her family in attendance with her as she was to win the first major outdoor PRCA rodeo of the season. “It’s a super cool rodeo atmosphere with the stands packed and a huge arena, and it’s just such a great rodeo,” says Steely. Her parents, Sid and Jamie Steiner; brother and pro bareback rider Rocker Steiner; and grandparents—known as Baba and Gigi—Bobby and Joleen Steiner, were all cheering her on in Tucson.
Steely’s horse also enjoys the large arenas. Hillbilly rose to the rigors of being number one when Steely’s main horse, Teena Turner, was injured the summer of 2021. “I really pushed Hillbilly this last summer and she stepped up. I’d really been looking forward to running her at Tucson, and she exceeded my expectations.” Steely’s two mares are maternal sisters purchased from renowned horse trainer Sue Smith. Steely also owns two 2-year-olds out of the mares and has high hopes for their futures. “One of my next goals is to train a horse I can go and rodeo on. One of the coolest things you can do is to make them yourself. I’m excited I have the babies out of these two mares to help me do that.
Steiner Support System
“I for sure look up to my mom, but also my whole family, because they’re who I want to be like,” Steely adds. She loves the unique aspect of all her immediate family competing in pro rodeo over the years. Sid Steiner won the WNFR in steer wrestling in 2002, Bobby Steiner won the NFR in bull riding in 1973, and Jamie Steiner ran barrels at the NFR in 2000. Joleen was also a professional barrel racer. Jamie and Steely are a mother-daughter duo on the rodeo trail, and even compete in some of the same rodeos together. “We talk a lot about barrel racing. And it’s always easy to drive home when you’ve done good, so we talked about my runs at Tucson for about half the drive,” Steely says with a laugh. “We listen to music a lot, and she helps the time go by faster.”
Pro Rodeo Goals
Rodeoing professionally became Steely’s goal when she was a high school freshman and had the opportunity to ride her mom’s horse, Dirty, who was out of Jamie’s NFR mare. After completing junior high and high school rodeo in Texas, Steely embarked on her rookie year in the WPRA in 2020, only to have her progress halted by Covid. She filled her permit over the Fourth of July, but when the WPRA gave all 2020 rookies the chance to defer their rookie year to 2021, she took the opportunity but still gained valuable experience rodeoing that year. “I’m just itching to go out to California and run in those pens, and I’m excited to go back to Cheyenne,” says Steely, who is entered next in Rodeo Austin. She’s currently sitting 22nd in the WPRA World Standings. “I want to make the WNFR. That’s my goal, and whether it happens or not this year or any time, I just love rodeo and I’m happy to be out here.”
About the Author
Lillian Landreth is a freelance writer and editor. She particularly enjoys writing about rodeo and the extraordinary people and animals who make the lifestyle fascinating. The author of more than 1,000 stories, her writing has appeared in the Rodeo News; The Ketchpen, published by the Rodeo Historical Society and National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum; and local newspapers. She is also working on her first novel. When she’s not writing, Lily enjoys riding with the Snake River Stampeders night light drill team, coaching the EhCapa Bareback Riders, a PRCA specialty act, and teaching horseback riding lessons. She makes her home in Southwest Idaho with her entrepreneurial husband, their dog, horse, and cows.