With all those accolades, there’s still a ride at the Sheridan WYO Rodeo that he thinks about every day.
In 2004, Harter went for 91 points on PRCA Saddle Bronc Horse of the year Surprise Party (tied in 2000) of Sankey Rodeo. That ride put Harter’s name into the record books with the top saddle bronc ride in Sheridan’s history.
“I rode at Casper the night before, I had the arena record there, the lowest arena record that is, I think I was 36 points,” said Harter, 39. “I had Surprise Party the next day at Sheridan. I remember sitting there thinking, ‘Man, she’s going to have her way with me, this is going to be terrible.’
“I got on and she rolled around the post and hit, and it was the first time I had ever been 90 in my career,” said Harter, who made the NFR in (2005-06, 2008-15, 2019). “She bucked hard, and I made the best ride of my life at that point.”
Exactly a year later at Sheridan, Harter drew Surprise Party again. The result was identical. They put together another 91-point ride to tie his arena record.
Harter’s saddle bronc career was put on hold after a severe hamstring injury in Round 2 of the 2019 Wrangler NFR. He tried to mount a comeback in 2020, but says his leg never felt the same after that.
“I rehabbed it for six months last year, and I came back and went to about 10 rodeos last year and I rode great at all of them,” Harter said. “But the pain was so unbearable – I rode bucking horses because I loved it – and when the pain overcomes everything else it makes it not enjoyable. So, I’ve pushed back for the time being.”
But retirement isn’t something he’s ready for.
“You know, everybody says retired, retirement means you’re quitting. I’ve never wanted to be a quitter,” Harter said. “I’ve just been redirected.”
Sheridan WYO Rodeo records
• Total payout: $267,376, 2018
• All-around: $12,648 Trevor Brazile, 2018
• Bareback riding: 90 points, Will Lowe, 2014
• Steer wrestling: 3.5 seconds, Dean Gorsuch, 2016 (7.2/2, Gorsuch, 2016)
• Team roping: 3.8 seconds, Cory Clark/Coleby Payne, 2017 (8.9/2, Frank Graves/Brad Culpepper, 2004)
• Saddle bronc riding: 91 points, Bradley Harter, 2004; Bradley Harter, 2005
• Tie-down roping: 7.2 seconds, Scott Kormos, 2013 (16.6/2, Trevor Brazile, 2018)
• Barrel racing: 16.63 seconds, Terra Bynum, 2007
• Steer roping: 8.7 seconds, Lawson Plemons, 2005 (44.6/4, Rocky Patterson, 2013)
• Bull riding: 91 points, Mike Moore, 2006
Courtesy of PRCA