RENO, Nev. – Reid Barker was the last man standing June 19 at the Reno Xtreme Bulls event, mainly because he was the only man to survive both rounds.
The 21-year-old topped a field which was as loaded as it gets with an average score of 161.5 points on two head to capture the biggest win of his career and earn a total of $11,985.
The Comfort, Texas, cowboy placed second in the first round with an 86.5-point ride aboard Growney Brothers Rodeo’s SFB. He is only the second man to successfully ride the bull (Tanner Byrne scored 83 points on SFB at the Reno Rodeo in 2013). This came after he was awarded a reride in the first round, making it a total of three attempted rides for the night for Barker.
As the short round went along, Barker watched the nine men in front of him get bucked off, and knew if he could stay on his bull he’d be at least third in the average. As it turned out, he ended up winning the most prestigious buckle he’s ever laid his hands on.
“I just wanted to do what I always do, and stick with what got me here and stay on the bull in the finals,” he said. “I’ve always been taught to ride your bull first and let the rest take care of itself. This is the biggest win of my life.
“This is my first Xtreme Bulls win, and the first rodeo I’ve won that had a buckle for the winner. I’ll put this buckle in a case and I’ll cherish it forever.”
Just as was the case with his first-round bull, Barker was only the second man to stay on the beast he got on in the final round – Flying U Rodeo’s Wolf Deer. His 75-point trip wasn’t pretty, but resulted in a beautiful start to the summer run.
“Cheyne Olney and Trey Benton told me my first-round bull was a good one and that he’d go out to the right, which he did, and it was nice,” Barker said. “Nobody knew that bull I got on in the short round. I was about to fall off, and just barely made the whistle.”
The win moved Barker – who entered the week 12th in the Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings – to fourth in the world.
Steve Woolsey won the short go with an event-best 91-point trip on Growney Brothers Rodeo’s Crystal Deal – the top bull of the 2013 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. Brennon Eldred won the long go with an 88-point ride on Western Rodeos’ Bad Blake and ended up with the second-highest earnings total for the event, with $9,635.
Courtesy of PRCA