Meet the Member Gentry Godbey
story by Ruth Nicolaus Gentry Godbey has a bright, sparkly personality. The cowgirl, a Colorado Junior High School Rodeo member, is upbeat, positive, and a […]
story by Lily Weinacht
CJHSRA rookie Pepper Rhyne is sitting second in the breakaway roping. For the 13 year old from Craig, Colorado, it’s a stepping stone to his favorite event of tie-down roping, which he’ll start this fall when he enters high school rodeo. He’s also seen success in the NLBRA, where he was the 2017 Junior Boy World Champion Flag Racer.
“Rodeo is lots of fun. It’s one of the main things I do, and I have some good horses that keep me going,” says Pepper. His mom and dad, Greg and Chris Rhyne, also keep him going, from hauling Pepper and his sister to practice, jackpots, and rodeos, to holding goats and running chutes. “My dad rodeoed a lot when he was a kid. He’s a really good roper and good with horses, and when we rope, he gives me tips and tricks to work on in the next run. He jackpots with me — most of the time he heads.” Pepper is also a header, roping with Josey Snidow in the CJHSRA this season, as well as entering the goat tying and chute dogging. He and his 11-year-old sister, Jolene, compete in ribbon roping together in the NLBRA.
The other half of Pepper’s team is his horses. “My team roping horse is Captain, and I have a flag and goat horse named Prissy. My breakaway horse is Maia, and she’ll also be my calf horse. She’s 6, and my grandma started off training her when Maia was young and now my dad and I are training her as a calf horse. She’s started working out pretty good — it’s nice to see their progress.” The Rhynes also have two dogs, and Pepper and Jolene participate in 4-H. “We have a sow that has pigs every year, and come March, my sister will get two pigs and goats, and I’ll get two lambs. Before a show, you have to wash them really good and they have special clippers for cutting down the wool. You want them to be the best animal they can be,” Pepper explains. “We’ll usually work with them for an hour or so on walking and bracing before we go ride. Fairs are a lot of fun because they have PRCA rodeos and jackpots. We put our 4-H money into a savings account for college, and we also have money for next year for more lambs.”
An eighth-grader at Craig Middle School, Pepper especially enjoys science and geometry. “We’re learning formulas to figure out acceleration and force, and applying that to real-world problems. I’m wrestling on the school team, and we have a pretty good team,” he adds. “We’ll have an overnight tournament in Montrose, and I’ll go to regionals, but state wrestling is at the same time as junior high rodeo. I like getting stronger all the time, and I like the intensity.” Pepper’s sister also does sports — basketball and dance — and the siblings are sure to be found cheering for one another at their games. Pepper enjoys spending time with his friends as well, going to sporting events together, or hunting elk, rabbits, and coyotes.
“This summer, I’d like to get my tie-down horse good and ready for high school rodeos this fall, and in junior high rodeo, I want to keep doing the best I can. I went to the Little Britches Nationals last year, and this year I want to qualify for (Junior High) Nationals in at least one event.”
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