Indian Relay Races attract crowd at Eastern Idaho State Fair

Indian Relay Races wow crowd at state...

BLACKFOOT, Idaho (KIFI/KIDK) - When most people think of the fair they think food, prizes and rides. The Eastern Idaho State Fair has one unique, and dangerous, event.

Indian Relay Races have been around the fair since the '70's. 

"I guess it's one of the biggest adrenaline rushes around," Kendall Oldhorn, Red Bone Relay Team Owner, said. "It's a minute and a half, two minutes, whatever it takes for the race. It's just total excitement."

The race consists of a rider jumping from one horse to another at the end of each lap. It's a team effort all around.

"Well, you got three horses, four helpers, the rider," Oldhorn, said. "And then you got your mugger. You got your set up man, your back holder. The mugger's job is to catch the horse when he comes in when the rider jumps off. The set up man gets the horse ready to be jumped on. And basically, the rider is the baton. He goes from one horse to the other. And we complete three laps."

With so much jumping from horse to horse, the risk of injury is high.

"Every race that we're in, there's a potential of someone getting hurt, a horse getting loose, or riders fall off, bump each other," Oldhorn said. "So there's always the potential of somebody getting hurt, we all pray that it never happens, but it does."

The relay race heat trials continue Monday, Thursday and Friday. The championship race is on Saturday. 

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