Some of the world’s greatest rodeo cowboys, including several from Wise County, are considering breaking away from the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) and forming their own professional rodeo organization.
A partial list of the cowboys and cowgirls who support the measure include local stars such as roper Trevor Brazile, barrel racer Shada Brazile, steer wrestler K.C. Jones and ropers Clint and Tuf Cooper.
“After an exhaustive effort of the top cowboys to help save the current structure, we now realize its time for a change and that there is a huge opportunity for the contestants of professional rodeo to work together to advance the sport,” said Jones, one of the leaders behind the new organization and a seven-time NFR steer wrestling qualifier. “We are extremely excited to showcase the best contestants at the best venues to give the fans the top quality action they want.”
The organizers said their original intent was not to break away from PRCA, and they made an effort to work with the organization.
But a major concern was that professional cowboys and cowgirls have no voice on the PRCA board or the decision-making process.
“We went to the PRCA with a proposal supported by the top cowboys that would have strengthened the PRCA,” Brazile said in a news release. “Unfortunately our proposal was not accepted. We appreciate what the PRCA has done for the sport in the past, but at this point we feel the time has come for the top contestants to be more directly involved in the future of our sport.
“We are forming a new organization to work together with committees and sponsors to make sure that the sport of professional rodeo continues to deliver the highest-quality product to our great fans.”
If the new organization does become a reality, it won’t be the first time a split has occurred in the PRCA. In 1992, a large number of bull riders left the PRCA and formed Professional Bull Riders (PBR), which has proved to be very lucrative for the sport and contestants.
The group has a Facebook page called “Support Rodeo Contestants.” The most recent update on Wednesday said there would be no changes until at least the 2015 season.
The announcement comes on the heels of PRCA announcing they might move National Finals Rodeo from Las Vegas to Orlando, Fla.