Last week proved that I’m ready to rodeo after my accident. I’m feeling like I did five or six years ago. I’m having so much fun competing.
I was planning on winning Prescott from the get-go, as soon as I got the draw. I’ve never won the Prescott Frontier Days rodeo, but I’ve always considered it a special place. After my dad, Lewis, retired from competing, he was a pickup man at Prescott for many years. I went with him to the Arizona rodeo from the age of seven to around thirteen. I have a lot of great memories from that rodeo.
Plus, they give out an awesome buckle.
My brother, Shad, is a pilot. The morning of Prescott, we all jumped into his Cessna 210. It was me, Mason Clements, Tilden Hooper, Shad and Shad’s twelve-year-old boy, Daxtyn. We hadn’t caught up like that in a long time. It was great.
The horse I drew—Pow Wow Nights from United Pro Rodeo—is usually in the eliminator pen at the NFR. He’s a big, strong one. I knew he was going to test my head and brain injury. He left there hard and was strong, like I anticipated. I was 89 points and ended up winning the rodeo.
My travel partners did good, too. We had lunch at a Mexican restaurant we like. After that, we hopped back in the plane and flew over the Grand Canyon. Took some cool pictures. We flew up in the mountains, where my brother and I grew up—on the backside of Mount Nebo—and got close enough that we saw mountain goats. We swooped down over our mom’s place. She and her husband were out. They waved up at us. We landed, and I was back home in time for dinner with my family.
Man, it was one of those days when nothing goes wrong, and your dreams come true.
My whole week was pretty much like that. I set out to win my first rodeo back after my accident, and I did. I decided I was going to win Prescott—my last rodeo of the Fourth—and I did. The buckle is awesome. It’s got red, white and blue rubies and the year the rodeo started—1888. The only place I didn’t win a check was at Cody, Wyoming, the biggest of the week, but at the same time I’m healthy, and I finished with nearly $15,000.
Last week proved that my recovery was a success and I’m ready to be back. I’m feeling like I did five or six years ago. I’m having so much fun competing. I love having my friends and family along to support me. After all the hard work you put in, it’s fun to show them, This is what I do, and this is why I do it.