My girls got out of school at 3 p.m. today and were home shortly thereafter. My youngest was being her rascally self and had to suffer a couple of consequences.
I was a little frustrated, because I have some things I need to finish before Wednesday morning, and taking time for a 4-year-old’s attitude adjustment wasn’t what I needed. Nonetheless, it’s what she needed, so I handled the situation. Upon returning to my desk, I started noticing the reports from the deadly tornado in Moore, Okla.
I sat awestruck while watching the coverage from KFOR-TV, the NBC affiliate in Oklahoma City. When the “chopper” video showed the leveled Tower Plaza Elementary School, my heart switched from aching to broken.
Mother Nature is a cruel mistress. We need her for so many things; this wasn’t one of them.
I somberly walked upstairs, where I found my 11-year-old reading. I told her what was happening in Oklahoma, kissed her, hugged her and told her I loved her with all my heart.
I found my rascal playing in her sister’s room, so I picked her up, looked her square in the eyes and said, “I know we had a little trouble today, but I want you to know that no matter what happens in our lives, I will ALWAYS love you.” I held her, and tears just flooded my face.
Not a day goes by that I don’t tell my girls just how much I love them. Today, though, I just wanted to hold them closer than ever. My heart, and my prayers, go out to all those affected by this storm. May God help you find the peace you deserve.
EDITOR’S NOTE: This story appears in the May 2013 edition of Women’s Pro Rodeo News, the official publication of the WPRA.
Yeah Hes Firen just hadn’t been himself.
Duke is one of the top barrel horses in ProRodeo, having guided Brittany Pozzi to Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifications and lots of money in recent years. But the 10-year-old gelding out of Spendid Discovery by Alive N Firen just hadn’t felt right to kick off the 2013 campaign.
That changed the first weekend in April when Duke led Brittany Pozzi to her second straight Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo barrel racing championship in Oklahoma City.
“He felt outstanding,” Pozzi said of Duke on April 6. “It’s been a really hard winter. He’s been off and on and hurt and not hurt.”
It was a valuable rodeo, too. Pozzi won $19,125 for her take over the three-day competition; she also added a $20,000 voucher for a Ram pickup. The tournament-style format seemed to work quite well for the talented tandem. Pozzi finished fifth in the opening go-round, with her 15.61-second run being worth $997. She scored that time in the opening performance, then waited two days to run again.
But that final day was quite busy. Pozzi ran in the final preliminary performance, blistering the pattern in 15.42 seconds, finishing second in the go-round and second in the two-run average. That evening, she and Duke scored a 15.48 to win the semifinal round, then followed that with a 15.35 to win the championship.
“He’s coming back really strong,” Pozzi said of Duke.
Everything seems to be pointing in a positive direction for the two-time world champion from Victoria, Texas. But there were a lot of great things that happened over the five performances of ProRodeo’s national championship.
Theresa Walter of Billings, Mont., kick-started the rodeo with a 15.59-second run to take the early lead after the opening performance that began at 11 a.m. Thursday, April 4. That evening, the second half of the field of 24 competed, and that’s where the lead changed hands. Carlee Pierce, a two-time NFR qualifier from Stephenville, Texas, won the first round with a 15.42, pocketing $4,607 in the process.
She then kicked-off the second round with the fastest run of the RNCFR, posting a 15.25. In just two days, she earned $13,821.
“I think being first on the ground helped a little bit,” said Pierce, who ran her great horse, Rare Dillion, inside State Fair Arena. “He likes this arena. As many times as I can run in here the better.
“I just feel at home here. It’s a great set up.”
The format works
The Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo features the top 24 circuit barrel racers in the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association – the year-end champions and the circuit finals champions from each of the 12 ProRodeo circuits; in case the year-end champion wins the circuit finale, the year-end runner-up earns the right to compete in Oklahoma City. In the Texas Circuit, for example, Pierce won the year-end and the circuit finals, so Pozzi, as the No. 2 cowgirl in the year-end, qualified for the RNCFR.
Because of the sheer numbers, each round is broken into two performances. There are great payouts in both go-rounds, but the key is that the top eight in the two-run aggregate qualify for the clean-slate semifinals – money is still tabulated, but the times are thrown out.
Pierce, Pozzi and Walter were joined by Nancy Hunter of Neola, Utah; Cindy Smith of Hobbs, N.M.; Barbara Merrill of Axtell, Utah; Pamela Capper of Cheney, Wash; and Lisa Lockhart of Oelrichs, S.D.
Pozzi won the round and was followed by finalists Hunter, 15.63; Pierce, 15.70; and Smith, 15.94. With less than an hour from semifinals to the finale, the girls kept their horses warmed up and got ready to attack the cloverleaf pattern again.
Pozzi and Duke rounded the pattern in 15.35 seconds, two-tenths of a second faster than Pierce, who finished runner-up to Pozzi for the second straight year. Smith finished third with a 15.59, while Hunter tipped a barrel to finish fourth.
Racing to the title
Pozzi has had great success over the last decade. She first qualified for the Wrangler NFR in 2003 at the age of 19.
In 2013 alone, she won Denver; San Angelo, Texas; Logandale, Nev.; Pocatello, Idaho; Red Bluff, Calif.; Riverdale, Calif.; Livermore, Calif.; Santa Maria, Calif.; Belle Fourche, S.D.; St. Paul, Ore.; Molalla, Ore.; Spanish Fork, Utah; Salt Lake City; Salinas, Calif.; Casper, Wyo.; and Sheridan, Wyo.
There aren’t many titles she hasn’t won, and she owns an outstanding pen of great barrel horses.
But there’s something about the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo that has caught Pozzi’s fancy.
“It pays great,” she said. “I did not know how awesome the Ram finals were until I made them last year. Now every year from now on I’ll make sure I make my circuit finals. It’s really awesome to be here.”
CLAREMORE, Okla. – By the time Chris Kirby is ready for bull riding at the Will Rogers Stampede, he will already be drenched in sweat from a full night’s worth of work tackling many of the behind-the-scenes duties that are involved in producing an event of this caliber.
It’s OK, though. It’s something in which Kirby takes great pride.
You see, the Kaufman, Texas, man is a professional bullfighter who will work alongside Clay Heger of Odessa, Texas, in keeping fallen bull riders out of harm’s way. That is their main job at Claremore’s rodeo, with three performances set for 7:45 p.m. Friday, May 24-Sunday, May 26, at Will Rogers Round Up Club Arena.
But they have many others with Pete Carr, owner of Carr Pro Rodeo and Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo, which will be providing livestock in Claremore for the first time in the rodeo’s 67 years.
“I’m just doing something I love to do,” said Kirby, 31.
Kirby will be in charge of hauling some of the best animal athletes to Claremore. Once on site, Kirby and Heger will work with other crewmates and members of the volunteer committee that produces the annual rodeo.
“We have a family atmosphere, and we all know what to expect with each other,” Kirby said. “I’ve just kind of jumped in there. If there’s a void that needs to be filled, I just go with it. We all try to make sure that what needs to get done gets done. It’s a smooth deal.
“If we do it all right, it looks effortless. Everybody has an understanding of what each of us does, and it’s a team effort.”
A longtime athlete, the Texas-born Kirby likened it to another professional sport.
“It’s no different than the Dallas Cowboys playing,” he said. “When they’re in the huddle and the play is called, everybody’s supposed to know their situation and know what they’re supposed to do. The offense drives down the field, and you score, just like you’re supposed to.
“There’s no one-man hero. We’ve got people who don’t mind going the extra step out of their way. We always make sure everybody’s got what they need.”
Kirby grew up competing in more traditional sports like baseball and football. His family cared for livestock, so he’d been around horses and cattle all his life, but it wasn’t until his early 20s that the man learned why rodeo gets in one’s blood.
“I played other sports, and really I didn’t know roping calves could pay you money,” he said. “I saw a buddy I went to college with fight bulls, and I thought I’d give it a try. The first one I ever got in front of ran me smack over. I got up and said, ‘Let’s do this again.’
That was a decade ago, and he’s been doing it ever since. In fact, he began taking it seriously just five years ago. In 2010, he became a member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, the top sanctioning body in the sport, and got involved with the Carr crew.
“It’s a job I get paid for that I really enjoy,” Kirby said. “I never really looked at it like it’s a dangerous job. It’s just what I do. And, really, I’m just as safe in that rodeo pen as if I’m driving down the highway.
“Plus you get to travel and you get to meet a lot of nice people doing it.”
Still, not many others get a chance to look in the eyes of a bull toting nearly a ton of kicking, spinning muscle. As a bullfighter, Kirby moves in once a bull rider comes off the animal, battling to get the bull’s attention, then using his natural athletic ability to get himself and all others in the arena out of harm’s way in the blink of an eye.
“It’s exhilarating,” he said. “It’s everything about it. It’s truly sensational to know there’s a wild animal right there that I’ve got a hold of that’s going to follow me wherever I go.
“I showed calves in high school, and it took me three or four months to get him to follow me so I could show him. All I have to do is be in the same pen as the bull, and he’ll follow me everywhere I go.”
While he works in front of thousands of fans at any given rodeo, Kirby tests his night on how little he is recognized in the arena. If he’s doing his job well and everybody stay’s out of harm’s way, then a bullfighter goes unnoticed. That’s his goal in Claremore, but that’s also his “working behind the scenes” personality.
“Going from amateur rodeos to the professional level, I didn’t realize the production of a good rodeo,” Kirby said. “It took me about a year to really see it, but what Pete wants and what we want is to have the kind of production where everybody that paid to be there got their money’s worth and then some. That’s our goal every time.”
Earlier today, world champion bull rider Dustin Elliott announced his retirement.
Elliott was born in John Day, Ore., and attended Chadron (Neb.) State University. He has, for the most part, stayed in Nebraska ever since with his wife, Cynthia, and twins, Ethan and Emma.
He won the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association gold buckle in 2004 and also saw success on the PBR and CBR tours. He also qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in 2005, 2006 and 2010.
“I’ve always told myself there will be a day I wake up and not want to ride anymore, and that day was April 10th,” Elliott wrote on a Facebook post Thursday morning. “I’ve thought about it for a month, and the drive just isn’t there like it used to be. I have other endeavors I’d like to embark on. I will stay involved in the sport in some way or another, and that door is open.”
Over the course of his career, I interviewed Elliott several times; he always was easy to talk to and offered anything I needed.
“My career was so much more than I ever expected as a kid from Oregon,” Elliott wrote. “I accomplished almost every goal I ever set.”
Cowboy church, pink night, memorial and Zip Gordon fund-raiser a part of rodeo’s finale
CLAREMORE, Okla. – A rodeo cowboy is the epitome of tough.
It takes a great level of toughness to ride bucking horses or wrestle steers. It takes a great level of toughness to drive hundreds of miles in a single stretch to get from one event to another.
But they have nothing on people battling cancer, and cowboys and cowgirls recognize that. That’s why most that make their living in rodeo support the Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign, which helps raise money and awareness in the fight against cancer. It also is why organizers of the Will Rogers Stampede are including a pink night during this year’s rodeo, set for 7:45 p.m. Friday, May 24-Sunday, May 26, at the Will Rogers Round Up Club Arena in Claremore.
“We’ve got a lot of things planned for our Sunday night performance, and we really wanted to include the Tough Enough to Wear Pink night into that great evening,” said David Petty, chairman of the volunteer rodeo committee. “We also want to honor cancer survivors in addition to raising awareness about the ways to fight the disease.”
It’s not the only disease the rodeo is hoping to battle. During the performance, volunteers also will be passing around pink boots to raise funds for the International Fibrodysplasia Ossificans Progressive Association. Zip Gordon is 5 years old, but he has been diagnosed with FOP; also known as stone man disease, the debilitating genetic disorder causes bone to form in muscle and connective tissue, potentially creating a second skeleton that severely restricts movement.
“FOP affects 1 in 2 million people,” said his mother, Amy Gordon. “They’re close to a cure. Until a cure is found, we will continue to raise money.”
The Gordons are conducting another fund-raiser in which they are drawing for a Jeep Wrangler, provided by Melton Motors.
“All of the funds from the Jeep will go toward research,” she said, noting that there are three cases of FOP in Oklahoma, including another in Rogers County. “The funds from the event and the auction items will go to IFOPA, because as a family, IFOPA is important to us. They do a fantastic job in what they do.
“Still, 85 percent of the money goes to research. Until a cure is found, we have to keep raising awareness.”
Of course, the Gordons have received great support from others in Claremore and Rogers County.
“The community has been there so many ways,” Amy Gordon said. “So many people want to be part of the community, but they don’t know how. This is something they can be involved with. It’s a little boy, and everybody can relate to a little boy.
“We have just been astounded as to how they stepped up. They look at this little guy as our guy, and we’re not going to go until we have a cure.”
More information can be found on a special website established for Zip, www.ZipperQ.com. They can also sign up for the Jeep drawing at the rodeo, and they need not be present to win. It’s just one way to celebrate a community that has reached out, but that’s what the rodeo is all about.
“Sunday night is also our Rogers County Memorial Night, and we will have a special tribute to three prominent individuals: Clem Rogers, Will Rogers and Clem McSpadden. I think the rodeo being on Memorial Day weekend fits right into this theme, and I believe we should honor those that have made our area what it is.”
It’s a great tie-in to the Will Rogers Memorial in Claremore, which is open 8 a.m.-5 p.m. every day of the year.
“This is the 75th anniversary of the Will Rogers Memorial,” said Steve Gragert, the museum’s director. “This tribute at the rodeo is a way to recognize individuals that were key to the museum and key to Oklahoma.
“The rodeo is representative of Will Rogers. The last day he spent in California before he left to Alaska, he was at a rodeo. They had competitions that he was involved in – roping competitions and cowboy competitions – and they were a key part of his life that would take him into the entertainment world. Rodeos were an important part of his life.”
But that’s just a small sampling of a bountiful evening of fellowship, entertainment and competition. A cowboy church service will take place inside the arena at 6:30 p.m., and all fans that arrive prior to 7 p.m. will be admitted for free.
“Our church service is sponsored by our Northeast Oklahoma Baptist Church Association, the Oklahoma Area of Cowboy Churches, Cowboy Gathering Church in Inola, Cowboy Junction in Vinita, Cowboy Capital Fellowship in Lenapah and Cowboy Up Cowboy Church in Owasso,” Petty said. “This is the fourth year of having a cowboy church service before our final performance, and I think it’s been a success. I think it’s good that we join our faith with our rodeo.”
CLAREMORE, Okla. – Passion defines rodeo cowboys, and it has to.
One doesn’t ride nasty bucking horses or bulls without having a love for it. That passion leads the best in the game to reach out to others, offering their insights to the next generation of Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association stars.
That’s the primary focus of the PRCA Championship Rodeo Camps, where any young cowboy with the dream can learn from the men who make their livings in the sport. It’s why the volunteers who produce the annual Will Rogers Stampede are excited to be part of a free roughstock rodeo camp, set for 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, May 25, at the Will Rogers Round Up Club Arena in Claremore.
“Everyone on our committee wants to continue to see interest in rodeo grow,” said David Petty, chairman of the volunteer committee. “We are involved in hosting several junior rodeos throughout the year, and this camp is an excellent way to get kids involved in rodeo. It’s also great having professional contestants teach the kids the proper way to rig and dismount roughstock animals.”
The camp also allows beginners lessons on safety, including chute procedures prior to the ride and what to do when the ride is complete. It takes place during a busy week of rodeo action with the Will Rogers Stampede, which will have three performances set for 7:45 p.m. Friday, May 24-Sunday, May 26.
“PRCA Championship Rodeo Camps are great for beginners and have proven to be very beneficial for advanced riders,” said Julie Jutten, who is with the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s industry outreach department. “If you are new to the sport, the camp will get you off to the right start, which will help your long-term success in the sport.”
The camp is open to participants of any ability, but they must be at least 8 years old.
Students can register in all three roughstock events and may do so online at http://prorodeo.com/youthrodeo_form.aspx. Students also can register by calling Jutten at (719) 304-1471.
“The classroom will include sessions on preventing and managing injuries, which will prolong careers, and understanding the PRCA, which will ease an athlete’s transition into ProRodeo,” Jutten said. “The camps are free and a great chance to learn from the best of the PRCA.”
It’s just another big step for the Claremore committee, which has worked hard the last 11 months preparing for the weekend full of festivities and competition.
“We will be hosting a national Little Britches rodeo this fall, and it will be one of the first Little Britches rodeos in Oklahoma from the national association,” Petty said. “We all have a love for rodeo and for the Will Rogers Stampede. We hope that we will draw more cowboys and cowgirls to our sport, and that, in turn, will entice them to come back every year to be part of our rodeo.”
JACKSONVILLE, Texas – Teamwork is a major factory in the success of any operation.
Pete Carr knows that as well as anyone, and it’s why he has the utmost confidence in the staff that will help Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo and Carr Pro Rodeo in producing the Tops in Texas Rodeo, set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15-Saturday, May 18, at Lon Morris College Arena in Jacksonville.
“I’ve got the best crew going down the road, bar none,” Carr said.
It shows in the overall product. Both firms have been recognized as top livestock contractors in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, and Carr points to the staff as the primary reason for any success.
“I’m only as good as the people around me,” Carr said. “These people believe in the value of hard work. When you look at events like this, those people make the effort and take pride in it being successful. That means a lot to me, and I hope the fans see it, too.”
Every play has its lead performers; in Carr’s case, those are some of the greatest bucking beasts in ProRodeo. Without an outstanding crew backstage, those performers won’t be showcased in the right light. The philosophy is the same in rodeo.
Carr established Carr Pro Rodeo in 2005 and purchased Classic Pro Rodeo this spring. Now Carr has brought together the teams from the two companies to form something rather magical.
“We’ve got some guys like Travis Adams that have been working for us for 20 years, and we’re mixing that with younger guys who work hard and are eager to learn,” said Jeremy Hight, a cowboy from Carthage, Texas, who is in his fourth year serving as a pickup man.
“When we put the two crews together, outstanding things happen. We all bring a lot to the table, but every person that’s part of this is willing to work hard to get things done and to do it all right.”
This year’s Tops in Texas Rodeo will be the fourth for Hight, one of two pickup men in the arena. The pickup men might be the most important cowboys in the arena throughout a rodeo, but it’s best that they’re not recognized. Their primary tasks are to keep cowboys as safe as possible while also helping with the overall production. They knew the necessity of getting the animals out of the arena in quick fashion after each ride and run.
“The thing about our crew is that everybody knows what needs to happen, and any one of us will jump in and do it,” Hight said. “Now we’ve got more people involved, and it works really well.”
The behind-the-scenes staff members put their blood, sweat and tears into their work in an effort to make each run, each ride and each performance come off as flawlessly as possible. Whether it’s feeding the animal athletes or moving them into the chutes to perform, there numerous tasks that need to be accomplished in order for a rodeo to come off without a hitch.
In addition to the family entertainment, crew members also keep in mind that this also is a competition featuring the brightest young stars in the sport.
“I think the best part of our stock company is that we have quality people involved in everything we do,” Carr said. “You can have the best animals in the world, but you’re not going to be very good without great people on your team. I’ve got great people on my team.”
CLAREMORE, Okla. – In his lifetime, John Payne has worn many hats. No matter their shape or their style, they all would be considered cowboy.
Payne is a cowboy, and he’s quite proud of it. So when he has faced adversity, Payne has tackled it head on, just like most other cowboys. When he was electrocuted and brought back to life 40 years ago, he dealt with it. It was a life-changing event that led to his right arm being amputated, but it didn’t take away from the man, the cowboy Payne has always been.
Now he makes a living showcasing his talents and the unique brand of ranching he uses on his piece of land a couple hours northwest of Claremore near Shidler, Okla. John Payne of the One Armed Bandit & Co. will be the featured act at the Will Rogers Stampede PRCA Rodeo, which will have three performances set for 7:45 p.m. Friday, May 24-Sunday, May 26, at Will Rogers Round-Up Club Arena.
“I’ve always been a showoff, and I’m pretty good at showing off with my animals,” said Payne, who works the business with his son, Lynn, 37, and daughter, Amanda, 34. “It’s kind of like a paid vacation. You get to travel all over the country and get paid for it.
“But I like to show off the talents of my animals and my horsemanship.”
And while his children have their own version of the act, Payne is the original One Armed Bandit, a shout-out to his ability to overcome all sorts of adversity. When he was electrocuted in June 1973, he fell 25 feet to almost certain death. His work partner revived him with CPR. But the voltage did plenty of damage – the electricity exited his body through his abdomen, leaving a nasty hole there and on his left leg.
His rodeo career began in the mid-1980s, when he went to an event close to his home. He told the folks at the 101 Wild West Rodeo in Ponca City, Okla., that they could get a better act if they hired him. He put something together, then went back to ranching. That’s when legendary announcer Clem McSpadden called Payne.
“He was the one who prompted me into pursuing a career in the entertainment business in ProRodeo,” Payne said. “Clem told me that I could do that and make a heck of a living at it. Heck, I’ve been in business 23 years now.”
It’s a pretty good business. The One Armed Bandit & Co. has been named the PRCA Specialty Act of the Year 12 times.
“John is a rodeo legend, and he puts on a great show every time,” said David Petty, chairman of the committee that produces the annual rodeo. “He’s also an Oklahoma icon, which is pretty important to me in having someone of his caliber here at our rodeo.
“We have a lot of great, long-term rodeo fans in our area that love to see the One Armed Bandit work, and we’re excited to bring him to Claremore this year.”
Payne has made an impression on many throughout his award-winning career.
“He’s not scared to be a cowboy,” said Jesse James Kirby, one of the elite saddle bronc riders in Pro Rodeo from Dodge City, Kan., a Stampede regular in every May. “He can make whatever happen, whether he’s riding a mule or a horse, and he can make those buffalo do anything you can think of.”
Payne has been amazing people for more than two decades. He has a custom-made trailer that he utilizes in the act, allowing himself and the animals a rather high perch to show off to the fans. It takes guts and true horsemanship skills to handle the act.
“When you look at the things he does, it’s just awesome,” said rodeo announcer Scott Grover, who has called the action in Claremore for nine years. “When you consider he does all this with just one arm, it’s downright incredible.
“It has been one of my favorite acts for a long, long time, and it continues to amaze me.”
JACKSONVILLE, Texas – The beauty of a bucking horse comes from its power.
The same can be said for Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo and Carr Pro Rodeo, the premier livestock producers in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. The Carr crew will be bringing the power to the Tops in Texas Rodeo, set for 7 p.m. Wednesday, May 15-Saturday, May 18, at Lon Morris College Arena in Jacksonville.
“Pete Carr is one of the premier stock contractors in the world,” said saddle bronc rider Heith DeMoss, a four-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier from Heflin, La. “Pete taking it another step further is amazing to me. It’s just going to make it better for everybody.”
This week’s festivities mark the 16th year Classic has produced the Tops in Texas Rodeo. Carr’s acquisition of the firm earlier this spring helps bring even more power to the athleticism and production of Jacksonville’s annual event.
“I’m combining two of the best crews in rodeo to form one of the greatest rodeo companies,” Carr said. “I’m excited about the new opportunities that are ahead for the company. I want committees to know we have a lot to offer them. We’re going to have unprecedented resources for all the rodeos, which will benefit everyone involved: committees, sponsors, contestants and spectators.”
The contestants who make their living in the sport recognize the impact of the Carr firms.
“Pete has such an array of horse now that no matter where he goes, he will have it to where everybody has a chance to win money,” DeMoss said. “It’s a riding contest instead of a drawing contest, and that’s what Pete’s got in his mind to do. I’m behind him all the way.”
DeMoss won the Guymon (Okla.) Pioneer Days Rodeo on Pete Carr’s Classic’s Spur Strap, so he knows the kind of horse power it takes to be successful. He’s not the only bronc rider who touts the athletic animals now owned by Pete Carr. Wade Sundell rode Pete Carr’s Classic’s Big Tex for 90 points in February to win the $50,000 round at RodeoHouston.
“Pete’s got a heck of a string put together,” said Sundell, a four-time NFR qualifier from Boxholm, Iowa. “There are not a lot of people that can match him anymore.”
Sundell also fared well in Guymon two weeks ago, matching moves with Carr Pro Rodeo’s Miss Congeniality for 85 points to finish in a tie for second. He recognizes the importance of riding great horses throughout the year if he hopes to win the elusive world championship.
“It’s awesome when you have a good horse underneath you, because you know something good is going to happen,” he said.
That’s a major factor in why cowboys loving going to Carr-produced rodeos like Jacksonville.
“There are a lot of rodeos that are going to be hard to beat because of what Pete Carr brings to the table,” said bareback rider Steven Peebles, a four-time NFR qualifier from Redmond, Ore. “Pete has raised the bar in rodeo. He’ll have better horses and better production.”
The drawing card is about giving spectators with the best entertainment value while serving the committees with elite performances and providing contestants with the best opportunities.
If you rope or are involved in ranch rodeo, or if you just want to support a great cause, I’d recommend finding your way to Groesbeck, Texas, for a benefit event over Memorial Day Weekend to benefit the families of the first responders at the explosion in West, Texas.
Bobby Joe Hill, who owns Hill Rodeo Cattle, is one of the organizers of the event. Click on the poster below and get all the details.