Amanda Coleman battled walking fresh cattle through four rounds of breakaway roping in Clovis, California, to be an impressive 15.3 seconds on four head and ride away with the inaugural rodeo championship in the breakaway roping, boasting combined earnings of $4,372. Coleman captured the aggregate title and placed in both the short round and progressive rounds.
Walking fresh calves aren’t every breakaway roper’s cup of tea, but Coleman wasn’t scared of the unique setup.
“I like walking fresh. They’re fun, especially at a rodeo. We get them at jackpots throughout the year, but I don’t think I’ve ever ran them at a rodeo,” Coleman said. “I had the same plan—just stay behind the barrier and rope the calf—and it worked out, round after round.”
At most rodeos, a cowgirl can check the draw before the round to see what calf she has drawn and get an idea of how the animal may run. However, Clovis chute-runs calves—meaning that they are loaded at random, and the cowgirl must run the calf that is loaded when it’s her turn. The challenge is a degree of unpredictability that makes setups like Clovis showcase a classical style of breakaway, where according to nine-time World Champion Lari Dee Guy, horsepower and riding ability shine.
“You don’t take a lot of chances out here, you just do your job. It’s a straight, basic roping,” Guy said. “The calves are bigger and longer-strided. You have to run the calf down and have a horse that will run to the calf and give you a good shot.”
For horsepower, 20-year-old Coleman called upon “Okie”—a 5-year-old gelding by Docs Stylish Oak—after her main mare, Pepsi, came up injured. It’s a gutsy move taking a young horse to high-pressure situations like California’s Red Bluff and Clovis rodeos, but Okie seemed at ease in front of the crowds.
“His first performance was at San Antonio this year,” Coleman said. “I couldn’t ask him to be any better. He’s been really good and makes my job easy.”
A Florida native, Coleman moved to Stephenville, Texas, a few years ago to put her focus on roping. Coleman has been chipping away at the World Standings in 2022, quietly positioning herself in the No. 14 position with more than $12,000 in earnings going into Clovis. With her weekend earnings, Coleman looks to move inside of the top 10.
Florida-Born Coleman Ready for NFBR Battle
With a flurry of WCRA Texas events in Corpus Christi and Fort Worth coming up, Coleman is doing her best to stay dialed in before she heads out on the summer run, while she and the other breakaway ropers anxiously wait to see if they will have a place at this year’s NFR. Coleman shared her thoughts on potentially roping inside the Thomas & Mack shortly after noticing a sign for $8.00 diesel on the 1,500-mile trek from Clovis to Stephenville.
“I love to rope, so just coming out here is awesome. It is nerve-wracking, but I am very hopeful,” Coleman said. “It would be a dream come true. I think we’ll get it eventually, whether it’s this year or not. We’ll just keep trucking along until then.”
- Amanda Coleman, 15.3 seconds on four head, worth $3,267
- Suzanne Williams, 15.4 seconds on four head, worth $2,841
- Whitney Thurmond, 17.6 seconds on four head, worth $2,415
- Samantha Fulton, 18.8 seconds on four head, worth $1,989
- Gianna Cianfichi, 23.8 seconds on four head, worth $1,563
- Josie Conner, 11.6 seconds on three head, worth $1,136
- Delaney Kunau, 13.1 seconds on three head, worth $710
- Madison Horton, 14.2 seconds on three head, worth $284
*Round-by-round results are not available at this time due to WPRA and PRCA website delays.