Twenty years ago this week, the ProRodeo world was focused on the Clovis (Calif.) Rodeo while saddle bronc rider Steve Dollarhide was in the spotlight for the May 17, 2000, edition of ProRodeo Sports News.
At the time, Dollarhide was at the peak of his ProRodeo career, which included eight qualifications to the National Finals Rodeo (1995-97, 1999-2002 and 2004). He won nearly $1 million from 1990 through 2007 and was crowned the Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo champion in 2006.
Dollarhide didn’t hesitate when given the option of a re-ride in the Wrangler ProRodeo Tour round at the Clovis Rodeo on April 28-30, 2000.
The 30-year-old cowboy took the ride, and it paid big dividends in cash and Tour points.
Dollarhide posted a 78-point ride on Growney Brothers Rodeo Company’s No. 066 to win the round and take the early lead in the standings of the 13-stop Tour.
He also walked away with $1,200 for winning the round and another $1,157 for finishing tied for second in the average payoff – far more than he would have gotten from standing pat.
“I was sitting like third or something in the short round,” Dollarhide told PSN that year. “I didn’t know what I was in the average. The moral of the story was, I wasn’t first.”
Dollarhide had posted a 75-point ride on Growney Brothers’ Untouchable during his original ride but was given the option of a second ride because the bronc hesitated coming out of the chute.
His original score would have been good enough to put Dollarhide in a tie for third in the Tour round and in a tie for seventh in the average race.
That wasn’t enough for Dollarhide.
So, he risked about $500, what he would have taken home before the re-ride, and bet he could produce a better score on a horse he knew nothing about.
“I’d never seen him before,” Dollarhide said. “But I was a ways down. I needed to do a lot better than what I had done on the first one.”
While some might say Dollarhide’s move was an easy call, few realized he’d lost the same bet the night before in Lufkin, Texas.
Needing to finish third or higher to qualify for the Finale of the Wrangler ProRodeo Tour, Dollarhide’s original mount stalled, earning him a re-ride.
“I got a 76 on my re-ride, didn’t place in the short round. Didn’t get enough points to make the winter deal,” Dollarhide said. “It turned out a little better today.”
In 2000, the Tour consisted of a summer run and a winter run with a finale for each. Dollarhide made six Tour finale qualifications – winter (2001-03) and summer (2000-01 and 2006). He also won the Tour in 2003 and 2006.
Winning Clovis in 2000 left Dollarhide a little more flush financially, placing him at the top of the Wrangler ProRodeo Tour.
Dollarhide, who finished sixth in the 1999 world standings, entered the final weekend of April in 19th place in the 2000 world standings.
Thanks to the $4,581 he won in Clovis and Lufkin, Dollarhide climbed to 12th in the May 8 standings with $18,041. (That’s the 2020 equivalent of about $27,152 when inflation is taken into account, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.)
“My season’s gone fair,” Dollarhide said. “I’ve had better. I’ve had worse.”
Courtesy of PRCA