GET SOCIAL 
SHOP NOW AT:
WRANGLER.COM

News and Notes from the Rodeo Trail, May 12, 2014

by ProRodeo.com | May 12, 2014
RAM has come onboard as a team sponsor in the 2014 Wrangler Champions Challenge, presented by Justin Boots. RAM, the official truck of the PRCA, will take over the WCC’s White Team, formerly one of three teams sponsored by the PRCA, starting at the event in Spanish Fork, Utah, on May 31 …

Man Up CrusadeThis weekend’s Las Vegas Elks Helldorado Days Rodeo is the latest PRCA event to embrace the mission of the Man Up Crusade (www.manupcrusade.com), a public awareness campaign to counter the scourge of domestic violence; 50 percent of all 911 calls are domestic violence-related. Wrangler and Montana Silversmiths have stepped up to sponsor the program, and rodeo committees are now incorporating a “Purple Night” during their rodeo. Wrangler has purple shirts available and Montana Silversmiths donates buckles for committees to auction off to raise funds. All monies raised in each community stay in that community for their domestic violence programs. The Man Up Crusade had a booth at the PRCA convention last year and rodeos are calling weekly to sign up. In addition to Helldorado Days, other PRCA rodeos involved this year include Cheyenne (Wyo.) Frontier Days, California Rodeo Salinas, the Lea County Fair & Rodeo in Lovington, N.M., the Caldwell (Idaho) Night Rodeo and the Rooftop Roundup in Estes Park, Colo. …

Rob McDonald former Pendleton bull riding champion Bull rider Rob McDonald, co-champion of the 1984 Pendleton Round-Up, died May 3 while working with his horses in Tupelo, Ark., just five days shy of his 66th birthday. A PRCA member for more than 15 years, McDonald was widely known in the rodeo community for his trademark handlebar mustache and his ability to rise to the occasion at major rodeos. Apart from Pendleton – where he tied Sam Poutous for that 1984 title – McDonald earned checks in San Antonio, Tucson (Ariz.), Houston, Montgomery (Ala.), Window Rock (Ariz.) and Kansas City. Upon his retirement, he taught bull riding schools and trained cutting horses …

Eugene “Cowtown Gene” Walker
, the first African-American cowboy to compete in the College National Finals Rodeo and a PRCA bull rider from 1964-74, died May 3 in Salem, N.J. He was 67. Walker’s father, the late William Rogers Walker, worked for Howard Harris III of Cowtown Rodeo and Harris got Gene started in rodeo as a pre-teen and moved him into bull riding at the age of 16. Walker earned a rodeo scholarship to Casper (Wyo.) Junior College in 1966, where he was on a national championship team with future five-time World Champion Bareback Rider Joe Alexander, 1978 World Champion Tie-down Roper Dave Brock, 1976 Bareback Riding World Champion Chris LeDoux and CNFR saddle bronc riding champion Ivan Daines; Walker qualified for the CNFR in 1968. In addition to competing in bull riding and bareback riding as a PRCA member, Walker also worked as a bullfighter. He would later have a career as a wrangler for movies and television, working on such big-budget films as The History of the World Part IThe Black StallionHidalgoMen in Black and Stir Crazy …

It is turning out to be a truly remarkable summer for 1992 World Champion Bareback Rider Wayne Herman. Already selected for enshrinement in the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in Colorado Springs, Colo., on Aug. 9, he is now headed for the North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame in the Modern Era Rodeo category. He will be joined by former PRCA bull rider Jerry Weinberger at the June 21 induction ceremonies in Medora …

The Caldwell (Idaho) Night Rodeo and the Caldwell Western Heritage Foundation have joined forces to award $2,000 scholarships to five Idaho students who are either already in college or will enter college this fall. There were 36 applicants …

Barry Box
, CEO of the Buc Days celebration in Corpus Christi, Texas, has reported that last month’s event drew its biggest crowds in a decade and that the Buc Days ProRodeo drew 18,048, a 1.8 percent increase over the previous year …

Hico Scholarship Winners - Cody Ohl

Six-time World Champion Cody Ohl is giving out $1,000 scholarships to a dozen high school seniors in his hometown of Hico, Texas, on May 18 …

Brenda Mays' Jethro

Brenda Mays’ legendary 15-year-old black gelding Judge Buy Cash “Jethro,” died on May 6. Jethro carried Mays to the average title at the 2012 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (141.79 seconds on 10 runs) and was the 2010 AQHA Barrel Racing Horse of the Year, after finishing third in 2008 and second in 2009. The Mays family purchased Jethro as a yearling, and he was taken through the paces by Brenda and her mom, Lynne Mays, a qualifier at the 1975 Wrangler NFR. Jethro, out of Flashs Polly Vandy by Judge Cash, took Mays to the WNFR six times. “Horses like him don’t come along very often,” Mays said. “People have said horses like that are once in a lifetime, and I never really understood that. But I do now.” …

Hadley Barrett, a four-time PRCA Announcer of the Year who for many years had a band of his own, will be singing with Ron Scott and the Roadmasters on May 24 in Haigler, Neb., to help celebrate the grand opening of the Cornerstone Center for Community Service. The Southwest Nebraska Extravaganza will feature an open house from 10 a.m.-4 p.m., with the music and dancing to start at 8:30 p.m. There is no admission charge, but donations are welcome …

During the height of last week’s wildfires near Guthrie, Okla., officials at the Lazy E Arena – home of the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo and the National Finals Steer Roping – opened their stalls to anyone who needed them to shelter their horses or other livestock displaced by the fire …

Caldwell, Idaho, bull rider Brady Portenier, fourth in the PRCA Resistol Rookie Standings, broke both bones in his lower leg when he was stepped on by the bull he had been riding at last week’s Stonyford (Calif.) Rodeo. Portenier underwent surgery at a Chico, Calif., hospital on May 4 and will be sidelined for an estimated three months. Announcer Don Jesser encouraged fans to pass the hat for Portenier and about $2,100 was raised to help him pay the medical bills …

Curtis Anderson
, who has made a remarkable recovery from the traumatic brain injury he suffered while competing in the bull riding at the 2002 Ponoka (Alberta) Stampede, will lead the Courage Canada Trail Ride on May 31 near Vermillion, Alberta, to raise awareness for brain injuries. Over the last nine years, the trail ride has raised more than $100,000 for the cause …

Workers have been busy giving the Will Rogers Stampede Arena a major facelift. The end result will be of tremendous benefit to the fans of the annual rodeo, set for May 23-25, in Claremore, Okla. “We’ve put in hundreds of hours into the reconstruction of our arena and making it a better experience for our fans,” said David Petty, chairman of the rodeo committee. The bucking chutes will be moved from the north end of the arena to the east side, while all the seating will be on the west. That change will allow fans the opportunity to see all the action right before them. “This change also allows all of our fans to have their backs to the sun, so it should be a more enjoyable experience,” Petty said. “No matter where you sit, you’ll have a great seat for all the action.” …

The city of Robertsdale, Ala., issued a proclamation declaring Tuesday, May 6, as Kyle Irwin Day there. Irwin, a native of Robertsdale and a graduate of Robertsdale High School, won the steer wrestling title at the Ram National Circuit Rodeo Finals in Guthrie, Okla., last month. Irwin’s 3.3-second run in the finals tied Stockton Graves’ 2011 RNCFR record …

The rodeo pavilion in Riverton, Wyo., has undergone a significant facelift, with some new wheelchair-accessible grandstands now in place, along with a masonry wall to control dust. The arena has added a concessions facility with updated bathrooms. There is also an announcer’s booth in place. The bucking chutes and pens will be installed this month, and the facility is on schedule to be completed in time for the Wind River PRCA Rodeo Roundup this summer.

QUOTE OF THE WEEK

I’m not in a dream world chasing a dream. I’m in the real world dealing with reality. I’m a fourth-generation cowboy and I believe.’”

– PRCA clown, barrelman and specialty act Donnie Landis, 53, in the Pittsburg (Texas) Gazette.

Courtesy of PRCA