By Charlie Coon, Wrangler Network contributor
Ben & Jerry’s ice cream, maple syrup and dairy cows represent three of the staples with which Vermont is stitched but you’d be hard pressed to find bull riders anywhere near the “most known for” list. Amanda Mills could not even compete in her home state because Vermont stock contractors won’t allow women to ride bulls competitively at the only rodeo there. New Jersey offered a school but Amanda needed to find more opportunities, more open space to enjoy on horseback and a chance to get better at what she loves. Mills made her way west and enrolled at the University of Wyoming in Laramie. She transferred in and will be entering her junior year this semester focusing on the veterinary sciences.
When Amanda heard about a rough stock school being offered at the UW teaching arena she immediately called Jed Moore (camp director and former pro bull rider). All slots were filled but Moore told Mills she would have a place on the alternate list. Someone canceled and Amanda went to bull riding school last weekend. To say she fit right in would be an understatement of the grandest proportion. Moore told us Amanda understood from the start of the three-day camp nothing would be sugar (or syrup) coated due to her gender. The 21-year-old proved up to every challenge and says she’ll be back for any school Moore puts on in the future.
We begin our report wondering what drove Amanda Mills to choose bull riding as her passion?