Riley Wakefield, from O'Neill, Nebraska, was the first alternate for the 2023 CTEC. He is now leading the average. "It's a dream that became a goal, that is now a reality," said his dad, Jim. "We are all very happy for him." Photo by RodeoBum.com
Hailing from the wide-open spaces of Northern Nebraska, Cinch Timed Event Championship first-timer Riley Wakefield is ready to capitalize on the opportunity to compete in Guthrie after receiving the call that Haven Meged couldn’t attend due to a RodeoHouston conflict.
“This has been something I wanted to do my whole life,” Wakefield said. “It’s something that’s fit me ever since I was young. Growing up my brother and I did every event we could.”
Wakefield says his strongest event is calf roping, but the multifaceted cowboy picked up a 2022 steer wrestling win at the Pendleton Round-up.
“I’ve had to specialize in the last few years in calf roping because things are so competitive, but growing up I worked steer wrestling, team roping and calf roping equally as hard,” Wakefield said.
Steer tripping is the event Wakefield anticipates being his biggest challenge. To prepare, he’s been roping and laying the trip on a breakaway.
Wakefield assembled his horsepower immediately after receiving the call to compete. In the calf roping and heeling he’ll be riding personal horses Gator and William, respectively. In the heading he’ll borrow a horse of Danielle Wray’s, and in the steer wrestling he’s hoping to reunite with his old horse “Bondo” he sold in 2022.
In the steer tripping he’ll be riding Todd Everly’s horse Mississippi, who was owned by Jess Tierney when he won the event in 2017.
Cheering Wakefield on will be parents Jim and Susan Wakefield along with grandmother, Pat.
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