Man vs. Steer: WC Challenger Charities plans Celebrity Steer Riding for PBR event

Man vs. Steer: WC Challenger Charities plans Celebrity Steer Riding for PBR event

Six local men have stepped up to the chute and agreed to take a wild ride for charity.

The 11th Annual J.W. Hart PBR Challenge on May 31 will feature, for the first time, Celebrity Steer Riding.

Tough Enough

TOUGH ENOUGH – Wise County men (from left) Joe Neil Henderson, Jeff Sicking, Beau Bell, Fernando Escobar, Wade Watson and J.D. Clark put on their game faces in preparation to ride steers at this year’s J.W. Hart PBR Challenge May 31. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

Six everyday, non-bull-riding guys from Wise County will climb aboard a beast and see how long they can hang on. The lineup includes Joe Neil Henderson, J.D. Clark, Jeff Sicking, Fernando Escobar, Beau Bell and Wade Watson.

WC Challenger Charities (WCCC), the organization that puts on the annual PBR event, will make a one-time $500 donation to the winner’s charity of choice.

WCCC’s Calvin Jackson said the only time they’ve had a similar event was the first year when they hosted a Coaches Challenge.

“Those guys showed up, and they were all so big we couldn’t put them on the backs of steers,” Jackson said. “They had to ride bulls. We asked J.W., ‘what are we going to do?’

“His response: ‘Don’t tell them ’til they sign the waiver!'”

Jackson has reassured these guys that they will be riding steers, a bit smaller and perhaps less aggressive than the PBR bulls. He also told them earlier this week that each one of them will be tied in by a champion PBR rider.

“It won’t help you,” he said with a laugh, “but it’ll be kind of cool.”

It’s rumored that J.W. Hart’s 5-year-old son, Wacey, is riding the steers in the weeks leading up to the competition, breaking them in for the Wise County celebrities.

Although Jackson likes to joke around and tease the volunteer riders about all the possible outcomes, he said WCCC does appreciate their participation.

“Our organization really does appreciate what these guys are doing because it’s bringing in extra revenue, which is helping charities,” he said. “I appreciate the guys doing that. Not everybody is cut out for it.”

At the conclusion of this year’s event fans will be treated to a bull-riding matchup that features the best of the best.

Hart has put up $25,000 for a winner-take-all challenge featuring the reigning PBR World Champion J.B. Mauney on Asteroid, and four-time PRCA title-winner J.W. Harris on Shepherd Hills Tested.

Mauney was quoted in a story on the PBR website as saying “sparks will fly.”

Fernando Escobar


Age: 31

Occupation: Licensed athletic trainer

Training regimen: Watch 30 minutes of steer riding on YouTube; five minutes of Physio ball exercises for core and adductor strengthening; one Orange Rockstar; one hour of advice from Fabiano Vieira; 30 seconds of Brett Braziel telling me how stupid I am for doing this; 12 beverages of my choosing to help me sleep at night.

Pre-ride ritual: 12 beverages of my choosing to build up my courage, and one Rockstar with a slap to the face!

Theme song: “We Own It,” 2 Chainz

Charity of choice: Wise Regional Health Foundation

Quote: “Smart, good-looking, and MEXICAN. It just doesn’t get any better than this!”

J.D. Clark


Age: 28

Occupation: Mayor/teacher/Republican nominee for county judge

Training regimen: Listening to Chris LeDoux music and taking advice from people who actually know what they’re doing.

Pre-ride ritual: Intense prayer. I doubt much else will actually help me.

Theme song: “Keep on Keepin’ On,” Jack Ingram

Charity of choice: Wise Hope/Wise County Domestic Violence Task Force

Quote: “It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena …” – Theodore Roosevelt

Beau Bell


Age: 39

Occupation: New and used car salesman at James Wood in Decatur

Training regimen: I haven’t done much. I guess I had better start thinking about what kind of end zone dance I am going to do when I win!

Pre-ride ritual: I will just get my mind right and ride him jump for jump! Can’t think about it too much or you’ll psych yourself out.

Theme song: “All I Do is Win,” by DJ Khaled

Charity of choice: Wise County Meals on Wheels

Quote: “If you ain’t first, you’re last boys!”

Joe Neil Henderson


Age: 46

Owner, AT&T Wise Wireless and
iCopy Print and Office Supply

Training regimen: Just started P90X,
but it’s not going real well.

Pre-ride ritual: Pray! And do a little stretching.

Theme song: “Rock You Like A Hurricane,” Scorpions

Charity of choice: Wise County Christian Counseling

Quote: “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phillipians 4:13 I’M FIRED UP!

Jeff Sicking


Age: 34

Occupation: SVP PrimeWest Mortgage

Training regimen: Richards Simmons VHS videos twice a day

Pre-ride ritual: Eating a couple pounds of our cooking team’s award-winning brisket

Theme song: “Falling,” N’Sync

Charity of choice: Decatur Cares

Quote: “I don’t always ride bulls, but when I do, I prefer WC Challenger’s.”

Wade Watson


Age: 41

Occupation: Owner of Texas Custom Trailers

Training regimen: Two sit-ups and had a double cheeseburger at Whataburger

Pre-ride ritual: Give my wife Teela a kiss!

Theme song: “Bad to the Bone,” George Thorogood

Charity of choice: Decatur Cares, summer meal program for kids

Quote: “Get ready boys, I am fixing to spur the hair off this sucker!”


  • Saturday, May 31
  • Wise County Fairgrounds, 3101 South Farm Road 51, in Decatur
  • Gates open at 5:30 p.m., event starts at 8 p.m.
  • The Celebrity Steer Riding will be held between the long and short go.
  • Tickets are available at or at Wise Wireless in Decatur.

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August rodeo will benefit Youth Fair

Planning is underway for a new rodeo event in Wise County.

The Chisholm Trail Days Rodeo is excited to bring a UPRA rodeo the the Wise County Fairgrounds Aug. 22 and 23, produced by the Flying C Rodeo Co. Owned by Will, Karen, Todd and Casey Cook, the Flying C is a family-owned rodeo company based out of Madill, Okla.

The Chisholm Trail Days Rodeo is a new event, however the goal is to provide a truly authentic rodeo experience for the contestants, spouses, family members, friends and spectators.

All money raised over and above expenses will benefit the 2015 Wise County Youth Rodeo and Wise County Youth Fair.

For information and sponsorship opportunity, call Zane Lasater at 940-255-9375.

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Decatur rodeo team competes

The Decatur High School rodeo team competed at a North Texas High School Rodeo Association events April 26-27 and May 2-4 in Saginaw.

The results are as follows:

APRIL 26-27

Chase Gasperson – 6th place, calf roping; 1st place, team roping

Jake Cobb – 4th place, calf roping

Chase Wilson – 2nd place, chute dogging

Jacob McLeod – 6th place, chute dogging

MAY 2-4

Jake Cobb – 3rd place, calf roping; 6th place, ribbon roping

Chase Gasperson – 8th place, calf roping; 4th place, team roping

Camerron Tucker – 1st place, steer wrestling

Chase Wilson – 2nd place, steer wrestling; 5th place, chute dogging

Dominic Head – 7th place, chute dogging

Cody Kral – 1st place, bull riding

Nick Martinez – 3rd place, chute dogging

Seven members of the Decatur High School Rodeo Team advanced to the North Texas High School Rodeo Association Finals May 16-18 at Will Rogers Coliseum. They include Jake Cobb, Chase Gasperson, Carolyn Spear, Camerron Tucker, Chase Wilson, Dillan McGuire and Cody Kral.

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DHS rodeo team competes

The Decatur High School rodeo team competed at a North Texas High School Rodeo Association event April 12-13 in Saginaw.

The results are as follows:

Chase Gasperson – 4th place, calf roping; 5th and 10th places, team roping

Carolyn Spear – 7th place, steer undecorating

Jake Cobb – 4th place, ribbon roping

Chase Wilson – 1st place, steer wrestling

Camerron Tucker – 5th place, steer wrestling; 1st place, chute dogging

Dominic Head – 8th place, chute dogging

Cody Kral – 1st place, bull riding

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Vieira crowned Iron Cowboy V

Decatur’s Joao Ricardo Vieira arose as the Dr Pepper Iron Cowboy V in the Professional Bull Riders bracket-style event Saturday at AT&T Stadium in Arlington.

Vieira, who is the reigning PBR Rookie of the Year, stayed atop the bull Mick E Mouse for 2.42 seconds, edging 19-year-old’s Gage Gay’s 1.45-second ride by less than a second, to be crowned the champion of the single-elimination competition.

Hold On

HOLD ON – Decatur’s Joao Ricardo Vieira stays atop the bull just long enough to advance and eventually win the Dr Pepper Iron Cowboy V Professional Bull Riding event Saturday at AT&T Stadium. Vieira edged past two of his four opponents by less than a second. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

As the event winner, Vieira earned the chance at $1 million if he rode the menacing Bushwacker for 8 seconds. But the bull proved its dominance, bucking Vieira off in 2.17 seconds.

Vieira earned no qualifying score en route to the win, as cowboys must ride a bull for 8 seconds to gain points. Otherwise, their score is the length of time they stay atop the bull.

FIRST-ROUND RIDE – Valdiron de Oliveira rides Born Sinner for 6.83 seconds to advance to the second round of competition in the Dr Pepper Iron Cowboy V Saturday. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

In previous rounds, he bested Reese Cates by .15 seconds – 1.98 to Cates’ 1.83 – and Stormy Wing by more than 2 seconds – 3.57 to Wing’s 1.27-second ride.

He then eliminated fellow Brazilian Silvano Alves, also of Decatur, in the final four with a 5.91-second ride to Alves’ 3.23.

Alves had previously earned an 87.75-point ride, eliminating fellow Brazilian Fabiano Vieira and his 5.52-second ride.

After a first-round bye, Alves had bested Chase Outlaw with a 5.95-second ride on Honey Hush, to Outlaw’s 3.88 seconds atop Chocolate Thunder.

Valdiron de Oliveira of Boyd advanced to the second round of competition with a 6.83-second ride, which was better than Ty Pozzobon’s 3.44 seconds.

Defending PBR World Champion J.B. Mauney, however, ousted de Oliveira in the next round with a qualifying score of 83.75 points to the local rider’s 2.73-second ride.

Despite an impressive 89-point ride, Decatur’s Marco Eguchi was held off by Stormy Wing’s 90.5 points in the second round. As a top seed, Eguchi received a first-round bye.

In the first round, Mike Lee of Decatur received a qualifying score of 77.25 points – and quite a scare after his spur got stuck on the rope around the bull, causing him to be dragged for a few seconds. But it was not enough to advance as Gay, his bracket opponent, earned an 85.75.

After a first-round bye, Eduardo Aparecido Silva of Decatur was eliminated in his first go after a 3.62-second ride to Fabiano Vieira’s 83.75 qualifying score.

Following Saturday’s event, Lee remains second in the world standings, just ahead of the Iron Cowboy V at third.

De Oliveira drops one spot to fifth, while Eguchi climbs to 11th place from 13th.

Alves rose to 15th place from 17th, and Aparecido is ranked 19th.

The Iron Cowboy V was the ninth stop of 27 in the 2014 PBR Built Ford Tough Series, which continues with the Bass Pro Chute Out Saturday and Sunday in Phoenix, Ariz. The season culminates at the PBR World Finals Oct. 22-26 in Las Vegas.

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Wise County teen rodeos for a reason

Every fan knows it takes more to succeed at rodeo than just what meets the eye – more than the skill to toss a loop over the head of a running calf, wrestle a steer to the ground, mount an angry bull or guide a horse around three hairpin turns marked by barrels.

It takes a reason, and 16-year-old Sarah Jennings has one.

Rounding the Bend

ROUNDING THE BEND – Sarah Jennings brings her barrel horse, Cowboy, around the course at a recent competition. Submitted photo

Sarah is a barrel racer, and for over a year now, she’s been riding to increase awareness of childhood cancer. In last year’s Wise County Youth Fair Rodeo, she rode for her friend, Morgan Wildmon of Rhome, who was battling brain cancer.

This year, she’ll ride in Morgan’s memory.

Morgan and Sarah met at a 4-H event three years ago. Last year when Sarah was introduced at the Youth Fair Rodeo, the announcer told the audience about Morgan, whose initials were embroidered on Sarah’s shirt.

COWBOY AND COWGIRL – Sarah Jennings said her barrel horse, Cowboy, was “stolen” from her dad. He’s the first horse she’s trained herself, and this will be his first full season on the circuit. Submitted photo

They’re still there, as Sarah still rides as part of the Rodeo For A Reason movement. But last June, a little more than a month before her 13th birthday, cancer claimed Morgan’s life.

“She loved horses, but she would never get to do it – it was physically impossible for her,” Sarah said. “When I found out about Rodeo For a Reason, I thought it would be a great thing to ride for her.”

Rodeo For a Reason was founded by pro barrel racer Kendra Dickson of Aubrey and her friend and fellow barrel racer Chrystal Hall.

In 2007, Dickson and Hall began hosting free barrel racing clinics, giving away T-shirts, belt buckles, bits, Bibles, saddles and even trailers. After a few years, they started asking students to bring food items for a local shelter or to raise money for a designated charity.

The group unites rodeo athletes with causes that serve a greater purpose and reach people in need. Sarah already knew Morgan when she met Dickson at a barrel race. RFR was a natural for her.

“I thought it was a cool idea,” Sarah said. “I liked it. It’s not just for the glory for yourself.”

When she turned to Kendra for help with a horse problem, she learned more than just horsemanship.

“Whenever she would help you, she would give you a little bracelet that said RFR, and there was a Bible verse on the back,” Sarah said.

Sarah and her family have stayed in touch, worked together and now Karen, Sarah’s mom, is on the board of RFR.

The group’s most recent campaign, “Gold Fire,” has become so popular that numerous competitors in the recent National Finals Rodeo wore gold ribbons to raise awareness of childhood cancer – and many are also pledging a percentage of their winnings for the cause.

“Barrel racers do have a stigma,” Karen said. “Especially with the new TV show ‘Rodeo Girls’ – we just groan. I think Kendra and what she’s doing and her group, they’re trying to break the mold.”

Karen said there’s a lot more to barrel racers than bling.

“There’s a lot of women out there who are barrel racing that are fantastic horse people,” she said. “These girls are horsemen. That’s why Kendra and these girls are doing this. It’s Rodeo for a Reason.”

In this year’s Youth Fair Rodeo, scheduled March 7-8, Sarah will compete in both barrels and breakaway roping. A barrel racer since the age of 10, she’ll be going for a championship buckle – but it won’t be her first, and not likely her last.

“My goal is by the time I turn 18 to get my pro card,” she said. “You can turn pro and still college rodeo.” She’d like to attend Tarleton State University, competing in rodeo while she earns a degree in ag business.

She stresses that no matter the event, no matter the age, you can always rodeo for a reason. Sarah recommends RFR’s Facebook page as a starting point for any competitor who wants to get involved in RFR.

“Even though barrel racers started this, you don’t have to be a barrel racer,” she said. “You can do anything. I would like to see it spread – calf-roping, bull riding, bronc riding – you can each rodeo for a cause that’s important to you.

“You ride for what’s personal,” she said. “I think that’s something great, and I want to see it spread. I think it would make a difference, the more people we can get.”

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Rodeo spotlight on Wise this weekend

Wise County folks will shine under the bright lights during a pair of rodeo events at AT&T Stadium in Arlington this weekend.

Five local bullriders will compete for a share of the $150,000 purse during the Professional Bull Riders Dr Pepper Iron Cowboy V Saturday.

Sunday, members of the 1,000 Miles Till Home committee will partner with RFD-TV to give a veteran a home through the Military Warriors Support Foundation Homes4Heros program during The American rodeo.

In bull-riding action beginning at 7 p.m. Valdiron de Oliveira and Mike Lee will ride in the first round. Silvano Alves, Eduardo Aparecido Silva and Marco Eguchi, who were among the top eight riders in the Final World Standing last season, received an automatic bid and first-round byes.

The five are among 24 competitors in the Built Ford Tough Series (BFTS), single-elimination, bracket-style event.

Riders face off in pairs, and the one with the highest score – or longest riding time if neither holds on for eight seconds – advances to the next level.

The matchups continue until one prevails and is declared the Iron Cowboy. The winner receives $50,000 and the opportunity to win an additional $1 million if he can ride the event’s bonus bull, Bushwacker, in the Bad Boy Mowers Million Dollar Ride. This will be Bushwacker’s last appearance in competition in Texas, as he will retire at the end of the 2014 BFTS season.

No. 16 seed de Oliveira – who is fourth in the World Standings – will face Ty Pozzobon while ninth-seeded and second-ranked Lee goes against Gage Gay.

Second-seeded Alves, ranked 17th, will face the winner between Sean Willingham and Chase Outlaw. Seventh-seeded Aparecido will go against the winner of Fabiano Vieira and Zane Lambert while sixth-seeded and 13-ranked Eguchi faces either Stormy Wing or Lachlan Richardson.

This is the fifth consecutive year that the PBR has brought this one-of-a-kind event to Arlington. It is the ninth stop of 27 in the 2014 PBR BFTS, which culminates at the PBR World Finals Oct. 22-26 in Las Vegas.


In observance of the 10th anniversary of the J.W. Hart PBR Challenge in Decatur, 1,000 Miles Till Home – a division of Wise County Challenger Charities (WCCC) – in conjunction with Military Warriors Support Foundation, presented five veterans each a home last May.

The 1,000 Miles Till Home committee will take its efforts to a bigger stage and, along with RFD-TV, present a home to one veteran during The American, the richest one-day rodeo in history with more than $2 million in prize money.

“We’re trying to expand this to be more than just Wise County,” said Alan Sessions, a member of WCCC and the 1,000 Miles Till Home committee. “We want it to be as big as it can be, with it having started right here in Decatur.”

After WCCC partnered with Military Warriors Support Foundation, Wendell Berry Jr., a founder of WC Challenger Charities and a Fit-N-Wise trainer, established 1,000 Miles Till Home last year to raise money and awareness for WCCC’s newest cause – giving mortgage-free, remodeled homes to veterans wounded in Iraq or Afghanistan.

They had hoped to raise $20,000 and give away one home, but the fundraising campaign was so successful they were able to give away five homes.

This year, 14 other teams joined Berry in his running and fundraising efforts, paying $20 to participate. That money, along with the proceeds of a Heroes Night dinner – to be held March 29 – and other donations, furnishes the money that buys the homes.

Donations may be made via PayPal at or mailed to WC Challenger Charities, P.O. Box 1238, Decatur, TX 76234.

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Saturday Sports Buffet: Roping another honor; Cooper to go into Oklahoma Hall of Fame

Leaving Cisco Junior College in the mid-1970s, Roy Cooper was invited to Durant, Okla. and Southeastern State University, where they were putting together a rodeo team.

SUPER LOOPER – Roy Cooper will join the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame in August. The Decatur resident is in the National Cowboy and Pro Rodeo Halls. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

“They picked me,” Cooper recalled. “The president (of the university) called me and asked if I could make a team.

“We didn’t have a coach. I put the team together.”

Success soon followed for the start-up program.

“We won every rodeo. My two years there we won national titles. They ended up winning four in a row,” Cooper said. “We put Durant on the map.”

Forty years later, Cooper is now being inducted in the Oklahoma Sports Hall of Fame. The Decatur resident was one of six inductees named this year for enshrinement. The class also includes Congressman and former Oklahoma quarterback J.C. Watts, St. Louis Cardinals catcher Darrell Porter and NFL All-Pro Leslie O’Neal.

“It’s the class that you go in with that is memorable,” Cooper said.

Cooper, an eight-time world champion, who has been inducted in multiple hall of fames, including the National Cowboy Hall of Fame and Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, said this honor is special.

“This one is not just for rodeo,” Cooper said. “It’s for all sports. That’s the icing on the cake. It’s special when you look at who is in there like Troy Aikman and Barry Sanders. It’s a great honor to me.”

Following going to school in Durant, Cooper made it his home for 12 years.

Aside from it being his place of residence, Cooper will always be fond of Oklahoma because it’s where he captured his world titles after splashing on the scene as the 1976 Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association Rookie of the Year and winning the calf roping title and the first world title.

Oklahoma City held the National Finals Rodeo prior to the event heading west to Las Vegas.

“Oklahoma has been a great state for me,” Cooper said.

After spending more than a decade in Oklahoma, he moved to Childress and later to Decatur, where he and his sons – Tuf, Clif and Clint – have helped make it the world’s new cowboy capital.

Cooper still visits Southeastern Oklahoma. He put on a clinic Oct. 17-18 on campus as he continues to deliver on his promise to deliver a championship to the school.


  • Monday will be Christmas for sports writers and some athletic directors with the unveiling of the University Interscholastic League’s biennial realignment. Some ADs may think it’s Halloween, depending on which district they get saddled with. This year, there’s some added confusion with the renaming of the classes with 5A now becoming 6A. It’s not what many of us hoped with a classification being added as now Class A Division II is now getting its own league and everyone is bumped up one. There’s also the change in what was once 3A and is now 4A with the division splits for football like was previously done in the lower two classes. So once again, 12 football state champions will be crowned and six or fewer in the other sports. A revolutionary fix I would like to see is 10 classifications that use consistent districts for every UIL activity. Yes, to divide the schools up into these 10 divisions would increase some travel – but for equality it should be done. If 12 state champions are needed for football because of the disparity between large and small schools in each division, I don’t see how it’s not for basketball, softball, baseball and so on,
  • Decatur basketball fans may hope to see the school land back in region I this coming realignment. According to the latest on the UIL site, perennial basketball power Dallas Lincoln will be in 4A Region II along with other Dallas schools – Carter, Wilmer Hutchins, Madison and Triple A Academy.
  • Joining the football ranks this realignment will be longtime basketball power Brock in 3A.
  • Realignment should bring a new fun rivalry with Byron Nelson and Northwest squaring off.
  • Along with realignment, next week will also feature national letter of intent day, as high school seniors sign with colleges.
  • A few names Decatur and Bridgeport fans will remember from Wichita Falls Hirschi are making big impacts on the collegiate level. Kansas State freshman Marcus Foster is 14th in the Big 12, averaging 13.4 points per game. At Old Dominion, Richard Ross is putting in 9.1 points and grabbing 7.4 rebounds per night. Ross and his Monarchs will be in Denton Feb. 13 to play the University of North Texas.
  • Sunday’s Super Bowl should be a super matchup with the game’s best quarterback, Peyton Manning and best offense Denver face off against the league’s best secondary and defense of Seattle. Defense is supposed to win championships, but it’s hard to pick against Manning. I’m going with Denver just because I trust Manning to make the play in a tight game. This is one of the few Super Bowls that I’m looking more forward to the game than the commercials.
  • Finally, a strong case can be made that Jan. 31 may be one of the most important days in baseball history. Jackie Robinson, Nolan Ryan and Ernie Banks share it as a birthday.

Richard Greene is the sports editor of the Messenger. Follow him on Twitter @wcm_rgreene.

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Trevor Brazile ropes record-breaking 19th title

Trevor Brazile ropes record-breaking 19th title

The stars of Texas rodeo were bright this week, deep in the heart of Las Vegas – but none was brighter than Decatur roper Trevor Brazile. On Tuesday night, during round six of the 55th annual Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the 37-year-old Decatur rodeo legend seized an unprecedented 19th world championship.

LONELY AT THE TOP – After capturing his 11th all-around cowboy title Tuesday night at WNFR in Las Vegas, Trevor Brazile set the record for total number of PRCA world championships at 19. The previous record of 18 was held by legendary steer roper Guy Allen. Photo courtesy Kirt Steinke, Western Rodeo Images

And he did it just moments after handing out a different kind of award.

Brazile and his wife, Shada, presented one of the early awards at the American Country Music Awards show at the Mandalay Bay Events Center before heading to the Thomas & Mack Center, where both competed before more than 17,000 fans.

Trevor won in dramatic fashion when he and partner Patrick Smith took the sixth-round title in team roping in 4.8 seconds. The earnings propelled Brazile to his 11th all-around gold buckle.

It’s also his eighth consecutive all-around title.

With his 19th world championship, he surpassed one of his childhood heroes, steer roper Guy Allen. Brazile grew up studying Allen’s technique, which produced 18 world championships, all in steer roping.

Sibling Rivalry 1

SIBLING RIVALRY – Barrel racer Shada Brazile posted a blazing 13.8 second ride Thursday night at WNFR. She’s third in the average. Photo courtesy Kirt Steinke, Western Rodeo Images

“I’d never have dreamed of setting 19 world championships as a goal, because I’m into setting goals I can reach,” Brazile told PRCA after the win. “I watched Guy Allen dominate. I wondered how someone could do something as hard as winning a world championship 18 times. It’s a little different, because he did it in one event.”

The win extended Brazile’s record for round wins to 55. He also won $26,462 in the National Finals Steer Roping, which resulted in his 18th world championship.

“This is a little bit surreal,” Brazile continued. “It sounds like a number to most people. Just because you have 18 doesn’t mean they give you 19. World titles never get any easier to win, and that’s why they all hold special meaning for me.

Sibling Rivalry 2

SIBLING RIVALRY – Tuf Cooper is trying to capture his third consecutive world championship in tie-down roping. Photo courtesy Kirt Steinke, Western Rodeo Images

“There are 15 guys in every event here every year, and none of them just lie down and let you have it,” he added. “This is what we dream about from when we were little. No one wants to let go of that part of it.”

Brazile’s world championship pace is unprecedented and appears unstoppable. He’s averaged winning two per year over the past eights years. Brazile won his first gold buckle, for the all-around, in 2002.

Team roping heeler Jade Corkill, the defending world champion, was second in the all-around standings. Brazile’s brother-in-law, two-time defending world champion tie-down roper Tuf Cooper, also of Decatur, finished third.

As of Friday, Tuf was second in tie-down world rankings. He had two more rounds to close the gap between himself and Hico cowboy Cody Ohl to claim a third consecutive tie-down roping gold buckle.

After Tuf began the finals in first place, Ohl has posted amazing runs including three first-place finishes and a second-place in rounds four through eight, respectively. Tuf tied Ohl with a 6.9-second run Thursday – a blazing time that would usually win the round.

Meanwhile another Decatur cowboy, Clif Cooper, was holding strong in eighth place in the world rankings. Clif has managed to place in the top six in four of the first eight rounds of the 10-day event.

Decatur steer wrestler K.C. Jones was sitting at 12th overall. He’s finished in the top five in two of the first eight rounds.

On Thursday night Shada Brazile posted her best time of the WNFR in barrel racing with a blazing 13.8 second ride, taking third in the round. She sits in third place in the average and 12th in the world rankings.

The rodeo runs through Saturday night.

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Decatur Rodeo Results for Saturday, November 23, 2013

Team Results from Nov. 15-17

Chase Wilson … 5th … Chute Dogging

Jake Cobb … 4th … Calf Roping

Chase Gasperson … 6th … Calf Roping

Chase Gasperson and Chris McCuistion 2nd and 5th places … Team Roping

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Decatur Rodeo Results for Saturday, November 16, 2013

Results from 11-8 to 11-10 rodeo

Chase Gasperson and Chris McCuistion … 3rd … Team Roping

Dillan McGuire … 7th … Chute Dogging

Cody Krahl … 1st … Bull Riding

Chase Wilson … 1st … Steer Wrestling

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Rodeo Results for Saturday, October 19, 2013


Jake Cobb … 3rd … Calf Roping

Chase Wilson … 1st … Steer Wrestling

Chase Gasperson and Chris McCuistion … 6th … Team Roping

Chase Wilson … 2nd … Chute Dogging

Camerron Tucker … 8th … Chute Dogging

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Decatur Rodeo results for Oct. 4 to Oct. 6

Carolyn Spear … 3rd place … Steer Undercoating

Jake Cobb … 6th place … Ribbon Roping

Chase Wilson … 2nd place … Steer Wrestling

Chase Gasperson and Chris McCuistion 1st and 4th places … Team Roping

Camerron Tucker 4th place … Chute Dogging

Nicolas Martinez 8th place … Chute Dogging

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Rodeo Results for Wednesday, September 11, 2013

CALF ROPING – Jake Cobb, 6th Place

STEER UNDECORATING – Carolyn Spear, 3rd Place

TEAM ROPING – Chase Gasperson and Chris McCuistion, 9th Place

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Brazile tops rankings

After a busy July 4 week, 10-time world champion Trevor Brazile remains No. 1 in the 2013 world all-around cowboy standings with $109,890 in winnings.

Rhen Richards of Utah is a distant second on the list with $59,663 in winnings.

The PRCA/WPRA conducted 32 shows throughout North America last week, usually referred to as Cowboy Christmas, with $3.3 million paid out to competitors.

Brazile was the biggest winner for the week, earning $28,828 in team roping and tie-down roping combined.

Exactly $23,526 of those earnings came from team roping, with help from his partner Patrick Smith of Lipan.

Brazile has been on a tear the last couple of weeks, jumping from 39th to third in the PRCA team roping heading title race. Smith, the heeler, has moved from 33rd to third in the world standings.

Former Decatur resident Chuck Logue, who now resides in New Braunfels, will be inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame this Saturday in Colorado Springs, Colo.

Logue, the 1990 world bareback riding champion, will be joined by four others in the 2013 class.

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Golden loop: College senior finishes strong at national finals

Golden loop: College senior finishes strong at national finals

Alvord’s Clayton Shaw earned his trip to the College National Finals Rodeo by winning the collegiate Southwest Regional Tiedown Championship.

At the finals, which were held in Casper, Wyo. June 9-15, Shaw was Reserve Champion in tiedown and helped his team, Tarleton State University, capture third place all-around.

Out on Top

OUT ON TOP – Clayton Shaw turned in times of 8.9, 10.0, 9.8 and 10.4 for an average of 39.1 seconds during the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper, Wyoming. Courtesy of Hubbell Photography

“It was my first time to win the tie down for the region,” he said. “It was a goal I set at the beginning of the year. The top three go to nationals, but I didn’t want to just be in the top three – I wanted to win.”

More than 400 contestants from over 100 universities and colleges compete in Casper each year after earning a spot at one of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association’s 11 regionals. The top three in each event, and the top two men’s and women’s teams, qualify for the CNFR.

“I guess I worked as hard as anybody,” Shaw said. “We would work out in the morning and rope in the afternoon for four to five hours. Some days I would work on the little things in my roping and other days I would just work out.”

He sharpened not only his physical game, but his mental edge as well.

“I just learned a lot more this year, and worked on my mental game more than before,” he said. “I learned to stay focused and not let my mind slip; it’s just a step-by-step process.”

Coming into the CNFR as a regional winner, Shaw found ways to stay focused and keep his nerves under control.

“You just have to remember that it’s just another rodeo,” Shaw said. “You just have to do the same thing and stick with the basics. If you aren’t nervous, you’re doing the wrong thing.”

At the finals, Shaw placed in the first round with an 8.9. He wound up with 135 points to win the reserve championship.

“I wanted to win because it was my senior year,” he said. “But I can’t be upset with Reserve. You just have to be happy and take the positives.”

Tarleton sent 11 members to the Finals – four women and seven men.

“It was a lot of fun,” he said. “We’re competitive, but we’re always pulling for each other, and that makes it more fun to compete.

Mark Eakin, Tarleton’s rodeo coach, praised the team’s efforts.

“Between the two teams we won six go-rounds, which was amazing,” Eakin said. “I am very proud of everyone who represented Tarleton at this year’s CNFR.”

As the awards wrapped up, Shaw’s horse Cowboy, came out on top as the men’s Horse of the Year for 2013.

“I knew I had a good horse,” he said. “But it wasn’t expected at all. I was pumped when I found out because I try to work really hard on my horsemanship.”

Points for Horse of the Year are earned throughout the CNFR and are given based on performance in each round. Shaw’s horse showed the judges tremendous athleticism and talent.

“He’s a freak athlete and one of the main reasons for my success. It just comes easy for him. If he does something wrong, I don’t have to get onto him – I just have to correct him one time because he’s smart.”

With college behind him, Shaw plans to continue to rodeo competitively on the professional circuit.

“I have no other goal but to make the NFR (National Finals Rodeo),” he said. “I want to become a world champion.”

As he works hard to earn his spot, Shaw suggests that younger competitors learn as much as they can.

“My biggest piece of advice for young kids trying to make it big in rodeo is to go to school,” Shaw said. “You don’t have to jump out and start rodeoing full-time after high school. If you want to go pro, work hard in college and put your whole heart into it.”

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Decatur Rodeo Team wraps up season; Finals and year end results


Tie down roping – Finals Average 6th place – Year-end result 6th place

Team roping healer – Year-end result 3rd place


Team roping header – Finals Average 3rd place – Year-end result 6th place
Team roping healer – Finals Average 1st place – Year-end result 1st place


Steer undecorating – Finals Average 1st place – Year-end result 4th place


Bull Riding – Year-end result 5th place


Bull Riding – Finals Average 3rd place – Year-end result 10th place

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Jones no slouch in slack round

Jones no slouch in slack round

Decatur bulldogger K.C. Jones gave a strong performance during Thursday morning’s steer wrestling slack round at the Butterfield Stage Days PRCA Rodeo in Bridgeport.

Strong out of the gate, Jones stretched off his black mare onto the back and around the bone-colored horns of a barreling steer. He rolled the dark steer in a cloud of red clay dirt and dust, pinning the animal in 4.5 seconds. The time was good enough for Jones to finish the round sitting in second place.

CHIN DOWN, LEGS UP - Decatur's K.C. Jones tackles a steer during the steer wrestling competition Thursday at Butterfield Stage Days PRCA Rodeo in Bridgeport. His time of 4.5 second left him in second place going into the rounds Friday and Saturday night. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

CHIN DOWN, LEGS UP – Decatur’s K.C. Jones tackles a steer during the steer wrestling competition Thursday at Butterfield Stage Days PRCA Rodeo in Bridgeport. His time of 4.5 second left him in second place going into the rounds Friday and Saturday night. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

“I feel pretty good about it,” Jones said. “The steer gave me a little trick, but I feel it’s good enough to finish in the top three.”

Jones was also part of the fastest time recorded in the round. He hazed for Kurt Goulding, of Duncan, Okla., who recorded a 4.0. Goulding rode Bumblebee, the horse Jones won on at the 2013 Houston Rodeo.

But other bulldoggers struggled to take down their steers drawn in good time. The third fastest time recorded was a 5.5, to Chance Howard, of Cedarville, Ark. The steers fought hard against the wrestlers all morning.

“These steers have been rugged,” Jones said. “They got some tricks to them.”

Jones is currently ranked 25th in the world.

Jones’ wife Gayle competed in the slack round of the barrel racing early Thursday morning, clocking a time of 17.06 seconds. That put her out of range of first place, which belonged to Benette Little of Ardmore, Okla., at 15.61. Little is a two-time National Finals qualifier in barrel racing.

“I get more nervous when (Gayle) goes than I do when I go,” Jones said.

Steer wrestling wrapped up Thursday afternoon. Decatur cowboy Trevor Brazile placed first in the average with a total of 32.3 seconds over three rounds. He earned $1,929 for his efforts. He also won money on all three rounds by placing in the top five every time. He won the second round with a 9.6, finished fifth in the first round at 12.1 and fourth in the third with a 10.6.

Although it’s early in the season, Brazile already has a commanding lead in the all-around cowboy race. His total earnings of $42,207 are more than $13,000 ahead of the next nearest competitor, JoJo Lemond of Andrews.

As the only PRCA rodeo in Wise County, Butterfield gives the sizeable contingent of local pros a place to showcase their talents close to home.

Decatur roper Clint Cooper competed in tie-down Thursday morning but finished with a no-time.

“I was late with my start,” Cooper said. “The calf got too much of a head start, and instead of getting a great start I got outrun.”

So far, tie-down belongs to Chase Williams of Stephenville at 7.7 seconds.

“It’s fun when you get to compete in a rodeo this close to home,” Jones said. “It’s a great little rodeo. It’s like an old-time rodeo. It’s a small arena, and everybody is in really close.”

The rodeo concludes 7:30 tonight at the Bridgeport Riding Club Arena.

OF HORSES AND MEN - Jim Allsup of Decatur checks out the riders on deck during Thursday's slack round. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

OF HORSES AND MEN – Jim Allsup of Decatur checks out the riders on deck during Thursday’s slack round. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

BARREL AHEAD - Barrel racer Abby Hurst cuts quickly through the red dirt Thursday morning in the Bridgeport Riding Club Arena. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

BARREL AHEAD – Barrel racer Abby Hurst cuts quickly through the red dirt Thursday morning in the Bridgeport Riding Club Arena. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

BOOTS DOWN - Boot heels hang on to a bar in the fence surrounding the Bridgeport Riding Club Arena as a cowboy takes a break to watch the action during the first round of this weekend's rodeo. Messenger photo by Joe Duty

BOOTS DOWN – Boot heels hang on to a bar in the fence surrounding the Bridgeport Riding Club Arena as a cowboy takes a break to watch the action during the first round of this weekend’s rodeo. Messenger photo by Joe Duty



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DHS sending 8 to NTHSRA finals

The third-ranked Decatur Rodeo Team will send eight members to the North Texas High School Rodeo Finals, May 17-19 at the Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth.

The third-ranked Decatur Rodeo Team will send eight members to the North Texas High School Rodeo Finals, May 17-19 at the Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth.

The third-ranked Decatur Rodeo Team will send eight members to the North Texas High School Rodeo Finals, May 17-19 at the Will Rogers Coliseum in Fort Worth.

Parker Slate is in the running for top all-around cowboy after qualifying in three different events. He will compete in calf roping, ribbon roping and team roping.

Jake Cobb and Chase Gasperson will also advance in calf roping. Cobb will also take part in the ribbon roping, and Gasperson will team with Slate in the team roping.

Reid Metcalf and Cody Krahl made the finals in bull riding.

Metcalf, along with Chase Wilson and Camerron Tucker, will compete in steer wrestling.

Tucker is also entered in the chute dogging competition, and freshman Carolyn Spear qualified in steer undecorating.

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Decatur Rodeo Results from April 20-21


Chase Gasperson … 5th
Parker Slate … 6th


Carolyn Spear … 5th


Parker Slate and Dakota Tawater … 7th


Chase Wilson … 3rd

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