Coy Rahlmann and Darlin Ima Fling Bag RFA Heading Derby Win
NFR header Coy Rahlmann rode 5-year-old mare Darlin Ima Fling to $5,500 in earnings and an RFA Heading Derby win in Abilene, Texas.
Coy Rahlmann ropes a steer at the Roping Futurities of America in Abilene.
Coy Rahlmann and Darlin Ima Fling win the RFA Heading Derby. Image by Shelby Lynn Photography.

Missouri native Coy Rahlmann‘s been dipping his toe into the futurity scene, and that endeavor paid off in a $5,500 payday and a win in the Roping Futurities of America $5,000-added heading derby victory to kick off 2023.

The heading derby on February 14 kicked off the team roping portion of the RFA in Abilene, Texas. After nodding his head for the first time, even Rahlmann didn’t have himself picked to win it because of chasing down a hard-running steer and turning in a 9.0-second run. Rahlmann switched gears after that trip.

“I wanted to be more aggressive,” Rahlmann (21) recalled. “We got a little closer with every steer. When Junior (Nogueira) and Kaleb (Driggers) were only .2 ahead of us and they went 5.9 in the short round, I looked at Jonathon (Torres) and said, ‘Unless we just draw a steer that’s getting away from us, I think I’m just going to try to get a good start and go for first because we don’t have anything to lose.’” 

Coy Rahlmann roping in Abilene, Texas, at the Roping Futurities of America on Darlin Ima Fling.
Shelby Lynn Photography

The Secret of Blue: Coy Rahlmann’s Secret Weapon

Rahlmann’s aggression looked like a second-round win with a 5.52 that got the $1,000 win in the second round, and a steady burn that landed him the $4,500 aggregate win with 25.69 on four head.

Owned by Kevin and Trisha Williams of Williams Performance Horses and by their Stallion, Fling N Famous, Darlin Ima Fling looks more like a barrel horse on paper than a standout heading mount. Her dam, Darlin Jetolena, is a daughter of the great Blazin Jetolena, who has helped shape the barrel racing industry, just as maternal grandsire A Streak Of Fling has on the top side. Rahlmann was elated to give credit to the program that made the 5-year-old mare, who took to heading naturally.

Registration papers for Darlin Ima Fling

Fast Fact: Fling N Famous is a full brother to Fame Fling N Bling, the red roan mare who took barrel racer Sarah Waguespack (McDonald) to multiple NFR appearances.

“I didn’t train her, I just patterned her,” Rahlmann said. “Miles Dewitt started her, and I got her back in the spring. She’s just been easy from the start.”


@coyrahlmann226 and Darlin Ima Fling just won the @ropingfuturityofamerica Heading Derby with a time of 25.47 seconds on four head. Story to follow in bio. TeamRoping Roping AQHA Cowboy

♬ Drop – Connor Price & Zensery

Although Rahlmann is finding success in the futurity sector, this NFR qualifier isn’t planning on getting into scored events anytime soon. Events like the RFA and the Riata Buckle—where the win is determined on time alone, instead of scored portions— are his aim around a busy ProRodeo schedule.

“I like (timed futurities) because sometimes some of the stuff the judges look for at the shows is a little different than we want them when we’re rodeoing on them,” Rahlmann said. “It makes it where we can make a horse and compete at something like this and in the end, they’re trained to do it how we want when we take them to the rodeos or the bigger open ropings.” 

2023 Roping Futurities of America $5,000 Added Heading Futurity Results

First Round

  1. Kaleb Driggers on Shake Em TanqueryGia, 6.38 seconds, worth $1,000
  2. Garrett Tonozzi on This Guyz Got Proof, 6.68 seconds, worth $750

Second Round

  1. Coy Rahlmann on Darlin Ima Fling, 5.52 seconds, worth $1,000
  2. Garrett Tonozzi on This Guyz Got Proof, 5.95 seconds, worth $750

Third Round

  1. Kaleb Driggers on Notorious HIP, 5.38 seconds, worth $1,000
  2. Kaleb Driggers on Raise A Pep, 5.58 seconds, worth $750

Fourth Round

  1. Kaleb Driggers on Notorious HIP, 4.84 seconds, worth $1,000
  2. Wesley Thorp on Flat Baraoquenbama, 5.08 seconds, worth $750

Aggregate (On Four Head)

  1. Coy Rahlmann on Darlin Ima Fling, 25.69 seconds, worth $4,500
  2. Kaleb Driggers on Shake Em TanqueryGia, 25.92 seconds, worth $3,200
  3. Kaleb Driggers on Raise A Pep, 31.28 seconds, worth $2,200
  4. Luke Brown on Playin A Rebel 18, 34.31 seconds, worth $1,100
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