Meet the Member Clint Nelson
story by Siri Stevens Clint Nelson won the All Around at the 2016 NRCA Finals, competing in steer wrestling, and bareback riding. “Years past I […]
story by Lindsay Welchel
Given his full time job working the ranch, it’s no surprise that Brett Wilcox, 29, competes in the events tied closest to ranch requirements. The cowboy competes in team roping, calf roping and steer wrestling for the Northwest Ranch Cowboys Association. And in Brett’s case, the ranch life and the rodeo life blend together seamlessly for him, and for his horses too.
“My rodeo horses are my ranch horses,” he laughs, joking, “if they can’t make it in both worlds they’ve got to go.”
Brett and his brother, Troy, grew up in rodeo. Their grandparents had done it in their younger days, and their parents still do. Dad, Lyle, competes in the Senior Men’s Breakaway roping and team roping, and mom, Debbie, team ropes.
Brett is close with his brother Troy. Rodeo keeps them together a lot. “We usually try to travel together. It works well, we ride the same horses a lot, and I used to heel all the time when I roped with him, then I started heading and I roped with my cousin last year,” Brett says. Troy still heads in team roping, but they stick together on the road.
Between the brothers and their dad, the Wilcox family works a decent-sized cattle operation.
“In the summer we hay all day and rope in the evenings, and in the winter I just feed,” Brett says of the work. His favorite part of rodeo and ranching involves his equine partner on the range. “I enjoy the horsemanship part of all of it, that’s where I work on the most,” he explains.
As for Brett’s partner in life, that job belongs to wife Melissa. The two met in college doing college rodeo. Brett competed for Eastern Wyoming College in Torrington, Wyo.
As for hobbies, Brett rides snowmobiles in the winter, and in the summer, it’s all rodeo. “The best part is just being with friends and family and joking around,” Brett says of the rodeo road. Melissa travels with him most of the time and rodeos herself.
“The biggest thing I’ve learned in rodeo is you’ll never quit learning. It doesn’t matter who it is, the knowledge they have, listen to it and take it all in, because you can always get better,” Brett says.
His plan for the year is to season a new bulldogging horse and hit as many NRCA rodeos as possible.
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