Meet the Member Brandon Nuffer
story by Siri Stevens There’s a whole village of people helping to oversee the Western States Ranch Rodeo Association. Two of those people are Brandon […]
story by Naomi Loomis, WSRRA Association Representative
WSRRA Member Since: 2013
Events: Justin rides ranch broncs and is a member of the Epp Cattle Company ranch team.
National Finals Qualifications: At the 2015 finals, Justin competed on the Epp Land & Cattle ranch team with Riggin Epp, Levi Swafford and Cade Yates. He also qualified in the ranch bronc riding and was the 2015 World Champion and the 2016 World Champion Bronc Rider.
This 39 year-old cowboy from the Northeast part of Colorado says that a lot of good luck and a solid foundation put him at the top of the WSRRA Ranch Bronc Riding standings in both 2015 and 2016. His parents Tom and Sue, raised their family Justin, Josh, Jennie and Jessie on a cattle ranch in Colorado, that’s where they learned that hard work will pay off.
Maintaining a job and still being able to hit the road and ranch rodeo is difficult but it’s doable. Justin is currently working on a ranch halfway between Mullen and Valentine, NE. It’s about 150k acres of rough Sandhills and river bottoms. They run a little over 5000 cows here. “I’ve found that if you plan ahead and know which shows you want to hit, then plan your days off accordingly, it sure helps. I don’t take many days off during the winter months and calving season. That way, when rodeo season comes around, I can take a few extra days off here and there so I can get to some of the bigger shows out west,” explains Justin.” He spends a lot of hours in the saddle long trotting. Most of this Sandhill country is too soft and rough to get to with a pickup and trailer so Justin spends a lot of time in the saddle. “Long trotting is an excellent way to stay in shape,” Justin explains.
In 2013, Justin along with a few friends from Colorado entered the WSRRA Double A Feeds Ranch Rodeo and Ranch Bronc Riding in Bridgeport, Nebraska. It was there that Justin entered the WSRRA sanctioned ranch bronc riding event, and where he decided that being a WSRRA World Champion need to be added to his resume. “The thing I enjoy most about competing in the WSRRA is that it’s a family. Someone is always there to lend a hand if you need one. I’ve met some truly amazing people and made some lifelong friends. The WSRRA is all about keeping ranching traditions alive. I also like the fact that anybody can compete. You don’t have to work on some big ranch, and meet a bunch of qualifications to be able to come and play,” says Justin.
In 2016, Justin traveled over 25,000 miles, competed in 26 WSRRA sanctioned ranch bronc ridings, climbed on 51 head of ranch broncs, earning himself many prizes and much money. Justin started hitting the pavement in May and he continued until October, traveling as far as Oregon, New Mexico and Washington to compete. He was also selected to be one of four WSRRA bronc riding directors. Justin has been instrumental in promoting the association and encouraging ranch rodeos and ranch bronc ridings in his region to sanction with the WSRRA.
The 2016 finals was different for Quint compared to the years past because his team couldn’t make it out so he was just there to ride as a ranch bronc competitor. “It was nice in not having to worry about a horse or being up super early for team events but on the other hand it left lots of down time during the day waiting on the next round of broncs.” Quint’s highlight of this year’s final was in the second round when he drew Sister Sparrow of Wes Cleggs. “I’d seen her buck the year before and knew she was gonna be rank.” Quint ended up winning the round with a 87.5. Quint explains that he didn’t have any low times this year. “There was a couple horses I wish I would of done a little better on but I think everyone has those.”
So how does the world champion feel about winning the WSRRA World Champion Ranch Bronc title twice? “To know that all the countless hours spent on the road and late nights getting from one rodeo to the next have paid off is a great feeling. But on the other hand it has added a lot of pressure to me as well. I can’t just slide in to a rodeo and ride my bronc and go unnoticed anymore. Having the announcers tell the crowd that I’m a two time champ as I’m settling in on my bronc can be nerve racking. Because the last thing I want to do after hearing that is come out and fall off or not perform at the top of my game,” says Quint.
2017 looks bright for Quint and for the sport of ranch bronc riding. Quint who has started planning his ranch rodeo schedule in January reassures us that ranch bronc riding is not dying off. “We have associations such as the ICA that have made ranch bronc riding an actual rodeo event and are having it at all of their rodeos. I wouldn’t be a bit surprised if you don’t see a lot more of these rodeos and associations having ranch broncs and ranch bronc ridings that have always been there are coming up with more added money. For example Powder River Days in Sheridan, Wyoming has always been a great WSRRA ranch bronc riding and this year Toby Vineyard went out and gathered up $8000 in added money!! So I’d say we are moving in the right direction.” His schedule starts in May and will continue until the WSRRA National Finals, November 2 – 5, 2017 in Winnemucca, Nevada.
Quint has a couple of horses that are on his most wanted list. The first horse is named King of Spades!! “He bucked me off in Ontario, OR last summer. He is the only horse all year to get me on the ground before the whistle. I would love to get a little payback on him.” King of Spades belongs to Glen Shelley from Oregon, now, but was raised by Gene King from Idaho. For Quint the challenge of ranch bronc riding is getting them saddled and out of the chute. “We get on a lot of colts so they can be a little hard to get along with in the chutes. Once I leave the chutes everything else is just memory, muscle and trying not to fall off.” The second horse is named Paddlefoot, he was the 2016 WSRRA National Finals Horse of the Year. Quint has seen some videos from this winter, Paddlefoot is super rank and looks like a lot of fun to him.
Quint’s ranch bronc riding future looks bright. “I’ve got a couple more years left in me. There are some rodeos that are on my bucket list that I still need to hit.” He has his views on ranch rodeos that he would like to attend in 2017 including Lee Daggett’s in Enterprise, Oregon that he feels puts on a great little rodeo. He also say that he still have some goals that he hasn’t quite reached yet so watch for Quint in a ranch bronc riding and/or ranch rodeo near you. On behalf of the WSRRA, I would like congratulate Justin on his second world title!
Rodeo Newstm (ISSN 1934-5224) is published 12 times a year, semi-monthly May-Nov; once in Dec Jan, Feb., March, and April by Publication Printers, 2001 S. Platte River Drive, Denver, Colo., 80223. Iris Ink, Inc., parent company of Rodeo News is located at 3604 WCR 54G, Laporte, Colo., 80535. Subscriptions are $30 per year. Periodicals postage paid at LaPorte, Colo., and additional mailing offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to Rodeo News, PO Box 842, LaPorte, Colo., 80535.
Canada Post (CPC) publication #40798037. Material in this publication may not be reproduced in any form without permission. Rodeo News carries advertising and editorials as a service to the readers. However, publication of advertisements and editorials in Rodeo News does not commit Rodeo News to agree with or guarantee any of the merchandise or livestock advertised.