Clint Cannon’s a friend, and I’m proud to call him that. Tonight he earned the All American Pro Rodeo Finals bareback riding championship with an 86-point ride on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Dirty Jacket.
It marked the sixth time this year that a cowboy has won a rodeo title on the 8-year-old bay gelding. It also marked the third time in the last calendar year that Cannon has tried his hand on the outstanding bucking horse – it’s the first time the Waller, Texas, cowboy has earned a title on the animal.
Cannon placed second in the 10th go-round at the 2011 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo; Kaycee Feild won the round on Carr’s MGM Deuces Night. This past June, Cannon placed second with an amazing 90-point ride on Dirty Jacket; Steven Dent won the rodeo with a 91 on – yeah, you guessed it – MGM Deuces Night.
So Cannon got over the hump. Good for him.
A little aside: Eight days ago, I was at Cannon’s hometown rodeo, the Waller County Fair and Rodeo in Hempstead, Texas, when I learned that my father was dying. By the end of the day, Dad had passed. I got a flight out early the next morning, so I went to the first performance that Thursday night.
When I saw Cannon, he asked about my dad. When I shared the news with him, Clint reached around my shoulders and hugged me, apologized for my loss and offered to do anything I needed.
Thing is, he’d just given it. That gesture is just what I needed, and I’ll never forget it.