Charmayne James is the third world champion to plan her comeback to rodeo in order to compete at The American, which will take place March 2 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
James, who owns 11 Women’s Professional Rodeo Association barrel racing gold buckles, was the most dominant cowgirl in the sport for many years. She won her first world title at age 14 in 1984, the followed that up with nine more in a row.
She added her final gold buckle in 2002, then retired from the game the next season.
“I’ve stayed active but will definitely be starting to train even harder to be ready for the level of competition at The American,” James said in a release issued Wednesday.
With the exemption to compete in The American, James joins seven-time world champion Dan Mortensen, who owns one all-around and six saddle bronc riding gold buckles in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, and two-time Professional Bull Riders world champion Justin McBride.
“Fans will witness history as she comes out of retirement,” said Randy Bernard, the CEO of Rural Media Group, which owns RFD-TV, the producer of The American. “It will be one of the greatest moments of the event, and we are very proud and honored that she has chosen to come back and compete at a sport she has given so much to.”