We're coming off rodeo's Fourth-of-July Run, and it was an eye-opening experience to our crew of breakaway ropers. This marks the first full season we've been on the ProRodeo road, and to say we've learned a lot would be an understatement. I surveyed my traveling partners—Hope Thompson and Lari Dee Guy—and we came up with the four biggest lessons we've learned on the road.
1. It doesn’t matter how prepared you are, you’ll have to face adversity at some point.
We’ve had rig problems. We’ve had horses hurt. My horse won’t eat on the road. Tons of people we’ve talked to have been going through the same things. Our trucks and trailers were all in the shop this last week, but before we left home we had everything in tip-top shape. We thought we had it all under control. So we've learned that ultimately, you have to push through it and it won’t be a smooth road the whole time. Expect that, and don't let it rattle you.
2. Not that we thought it was going to be easy, but entering really is as hard as they say it is.
We’ve asked tons of questions and gotten tons of help from everybody, but it is a huge part of the game. The people who’ve been out here longer—the guys and the girls who’ve rodeoed for years in the other events—they’ve got it figured out and all the breakaway ropers are new at it. We're all working at figuring it out and trying to help each other.
3. Your hauling partners are so important.
Everybody needs to be on the same page as far as goals and personalities. I’ve got Hope and Lari Dee, so we’re so lucky. But I hear of people already disagreeing and not liking each other or wanting to go different places. It’s something you dang sure have to think about before you take off with somebody for three months and know what your goals are going to be. Who you're around 24/7 can completely alter your mental game, so choose wisely.
4. We have figured out that you can stuff your Twister Trailer a lot more full than you think.
We've got A LOT of stuff in this trailer. We have found some cubby holes you wouldn’t think were there. Especially with Hope T.—she’s got 100 pairs of shoes. We didn’t know how we’d pack everything for this long, but we figured it out! BRJ