story by Lindsay King Third generation rodeo competitor 13-year-old Libby Berger from Udall, Kansas, has a need for speed. “Barrels or breakaway roping is my […]
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Meet the Member Curry Kirchner
story by Lindsay King
For 18-year-old, recent Cimarron Public High School graduate Curry Kirchner, rodeo is coupled with his past and future. “My main goal in life is to be able to make a living with my rope and eventually compete at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.” Curry has always been a team roper, he can remember having a rope in his hand when he was just four years old but started roping when he was just two. His dad Robert is a team roper who competed in high school, college as well as in the Prairie Circuit, Kansas Pro Rodeo Association and the Central Plains Rodeo Association. “It was great growing up with a dad who roped. Anytime I would have trouble he knew exactly how to help me. It was a huge advantage.” Curry practices and often competes with his dad, especially at USTRC events. When Curry was little he competed in the Northwest Oklahoma Junior Rodeo Association, he breakaway and ribbon roped. But when he turned ten he started going to USTRC ropings as well as some open rodeos. Curry has always been a header but tries his hand at heeling sometimes. “I like the competition, the adrenaline rush. It is basically what I have done my whole life, it is second nature to me. I like to travel and ride horses, I like everything about roping.”
Turbo, a bay seven-year-old Quarter Horse gelding, is his current go-to head horse. Curry plans to use Turbo as he pursues his rodeo career in the upcoming year, he just bought is PRCA card to rodeo on. “He is probably the best horse I have ever ridden. He does things naturally that you just cannot teach.” In years past, Twister, a 10-year-old buckskin Quarter Horse gelding, raised and trained by Curry and his dad, was his top mount. Twister is about sixteens hands tall, making it easy to just stand right up and reach out on, something Curry is known for doing. “He is really good in the fast set-ups; he is easy to be fast on.” Curry looks up to his dad, who not only taught him everything he knows but also gave up his own rodeo career so Curry could fully pursue his. He travels with Curry, sharing in the late nights and early mornings. His mom Becki and two siblings, Chruz, nine, and Cambree, ten, go to as many rodeos as they can. Though they do not rodeo yet, Chruz likes to rope the dummy and Cambree runs barrels at home.
One of Curry’s greatest accomplishments to date was becoming a number seven header when he was sixteen. “In 2013 we won two USTRC ropings in one day, a #12 and #13.” His goals for this rodeo season include making the Prairie Circuit finals and getting year-end awards both in the KPRA and CePRA. He is currently sitting fifth in the Oklahoma High School Rodeo Association as he prepares for the state finals. Curry played four years of baseball for his high school team, pitching as well as playing third base and was named to the all-conference team. “Everybody probably thinks I rope all year round but I was pretty busy in the spring and fall for baseball.” Curry now works alongside his dad at Roberts Ranch, managing more than 1,000 head of black Angus cattle on wheat pasture. Curry intends to be gone at rodeos Wednesday through Sunday for the summer. Living only an hour from the Kansas state line makes it easier for Curry to get to the CePRA rodeos, most are only about three hours away. “The cattle are always good and the payout is outstanding. Everybody is always easy to get along with and they put on some great rodeos.”