Texas Bronc Rider’s Association 2018 Finals Set for Last Weekend in September
story by Lori O’Harver GLEN ROSE, Texas – “We’re thrilled to have the bronc riders back in town, but honestly? It’s the TBRA lady ranch […]
Diamond Cross Rodeo Company Knows the World Stage Starts at Home
story by Lori O’Harver
LEXINGTON, Texas – The pastures where the Diamond Cross horses spend most of their time is dotted with mesquite instead of bluegrass. The horses are identified with fire-brands instead of leather halters with brass plaques bearing their names and lineage. Aside from those differences, Kentucky’s Lexington and the Texas version look a lot alike. Both are home to champion horses with royal bloodlines and are looked to proudly by fine horsemen. Wesley McManus can testify to that.
Twenty years a bull fighter, McManus has grown his Diamond Cross herd of bucking horses since 2010. His band of bucking horses originate from two of bronc riding nation’s most respected producers of horses who buck; Harry Vold Rodeo Company of Aurora, Colorado and Mack Altizer’s Bad Company Rodeo of Del Rio, Texas.
“I know in my heart that if our community fails to focus on our great horses and the young cowboys and cowgirls coming up in the sport, that we are lost,” said McManus. “I met Daryl McElroy a few years ago. He shared his vision for the Texas Bronc Rider’s Association’s (TBRA) multi-layered plan to support not just the industry, but the contestants who will carry the sport into the future. I jumped on board almost immediately.”
“The community is built on traditions, so change is sometimes hard to accept. New faces and ideas aren’t always welcomed with open arms,” McManus continued. “I say who else is working hard and actually doing something to help the sport? I’m behind the TBRA all the way!”
It’s not simply rodeo business as usual when it comes to producing a TBRA co-sanctioned event. It’s horse heavy because the TBRA features every bucking horse riding event; ranch broncs, saddle broncs, bareback horses and mini broncs and ponies. Setting an even pen of horses for each event’s particulars would be hard enough, but allowing for the RIDE TV Women’s Ranch Bronc Riding with seasoned, non-eliminator type horses and fit ponies for three different age levels of kids for the Mini Saddle Bronc and Mini Bareback Riding world finals qualifiers requires a lot of forethought and precise selection.
“I spend a lot of time and effort trying to make it not just fair, but as safe as riding a bucking horse can possibly be,” said McManus. “There’s no sense in trying to develop a strong, new facet of the industry if all we end up doing is breaking an egg in the contestants.”
“Billi Halverson came off really bad and is out for the season,” McManus said. “She’s a tough young lady and on fire to ride. Falls are part of it, thankfully bad falls don’t happen very often. As much as we all hated to see it, but it’s going to happen, I don’t care who you are.”
Bronc riding is a dangerous sport and that will never change. Not dumbing it down, but smartening it up for young or beginning contestants is part of how we keep the pipeline of riders full.
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