Caroline Dodwell is sort of a misfit in her family. Her parents, you see, were not quite 'horse people.' She says they were more into tennis and golf. Perhaps not as much a misfit, though. Her mother did compare her to her grandfather.

At fourteen she finally got her first horse. It wasn't quite that simple, though. the horse was leased, the land on which it grazed was leased, and so was the saddle. When she bought her first horse she was introduced to Play Days. From there she went to Western Pleasure and showmanship. But when she left for college, her father sold the horse.

After she finished college, she once again bought a horse.  She was a teacher in the Oak Cliff (Dallas) ISD for five years.  Teaching turned out not to be what she was looking for. She went back to showing horses. She showed several Palomino World Champions and AQHA World Champions as well as a few paints. From there her interest moved to race horses and  barrel racing thanks to her husband Ed, whom she credits for the biggest part of her success through his support, wisdom and help.

Her first 'good' barrel horse was named Mr. Booker T Bars. In December, 1986, her husband, Ed, bought this already trained and ready to go horse on which she ran in the Finals of the Girls' Invitational Barrel Race at the Fort Worth Stock Show in Texas. But her first 'really good' horse was Suzita. Her husband suggested that she compete on Suzita, an AQHA race they had trained. Caroline says, "Suz wasn't real consistent, but when she threw one she really stopped the clock because she was so fast."

Those were her humble beginnings. She hasn't stopped competing yet. Throughout the nineties she has amassed quite a collection

Dumas was purchased by her husband at the BFA World Championships Sale as a three year old. All three years that he competed at Fort Smith he made the Finals.  Dumas is by Mr. Blue Raider and an out of an own daughter of St. Bar.

We asked which of the three horses is her favorite: "All of them have won things that meant a lot to me, like when Dumas was the BFA Derby Horse of the Year and Suzita won the Nacogdoches Futurity - I mean, she won so much stuff and I was such a beginner. Winning at Fort Worth was an all-time high. They have all done so much for me in their own way. You just could not believe how fast Suzita was; she would run anything but a perfect barrel pattern, yet when she wrapped every single barrel, she'd outrun them badly." Dumas is still the leader with more than $100,000 in winnings with Suzita and Cookie running closely behind with $65,000+ and $50,000+ respectively.

Cookie is her latest competitor. "She's not quite as fast as Suzita but she's quicker and will probably be more consistent. She'll be a better horse than Dumas, she's faster, quicker and she isn't seasoned yet." Cookie is by Some Dasher out of a Grade I Stakes winning Six Fortunes mare, she was purchased by Caroline as a 2 yr old.

When we asked what sort of advice she would give to novices she suggested: "Take on the kind of things that have 3-D's or 4-D's or classes that fit you and your horse. Try and run your horse where he belongs. Look for a horse that has a good mind, is quiet, and fits you. He may not be the fastest one out there but look for consistency. Set yourself a goal and try to attain it. When you do attain it, set a higher goal and work your way up."