story by Lindsay Humphrey John didn’t have any interest in rodeo in his earlier teenage years. He quickly changed his tune at 16 when his […]
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Meet the Member Jackson Stoney
story by Lindsay King
“When I was in the PRCA I would look at the day sheet and see NFR competitors and wonder how I was supposed to compete with them,” said Jackson Stoney from Tremonton, Utah. “Through the years I watched them get bucked off; have good and bad days just like me. Once I got over worrying about who was entered, my bull riding improved tremendously.” Perhaps this is exactly why Jackson is the four-time NSPRA world champion bull rider at 43 years old. Learning how to compete against the animal rather than the other cowboys was a pivotal moment in Jackson’s rodeo career. Jackson watched his dad (Rich) ride in the NSPRA when he was a kid and that’s why he’s a member of it today.
“My dad got me started on steers and he was my traveling partner for many years. He showed me what rodeo was all about and how to choose the right rodeos and traveling partners. He is my hero and taught me just about everything I know.” Rich won the NSPRA world bull riding title exactly 20 years before Jackson did. Every Saturday Jackson and his siblings have lunch with their dad just to catch up on life. “Most importantly dad has taught me that family is the most important thing and that it should always be first in life.” When Jackson was riding bulls in the PRCA his kids served as his traveling partners for a long time.
“When my dad quit riding, I hauled my kids across the country. From Texas to Oregon, but not on the other side of the Mississippi. They were my cheering section.” Jackson didn’t fill his permit until he was 28, so by the time he was hauling his kids around to rodeos he was dubbed “the old man with the kids.” When the days got hard, Jackson said his kids kept him going. “They were my inspiration, at that time I could do no wrong in their eyes.” Now Jackson hauls his youngest daughter, Violet, and wife, Andrea, to as many NSPRA events as he can. “I wouldn’t be a four-time world champion if it wasn’t for my wife. She is a blessing and my number one supporter.” Jackson’s daughter is known behind the chutes as a sort of mascot because she cheers for absolutely everyone. Long before Jackson’s widespread success in the bull riding, he got to know a suitcase handle.
“When I first started riding bulls, my dad made me ride bareback horses because he said my long legs would look good on them.” For more than a year, Jackson rode nothing but broncs. It turned out to be his saving grace when it came to bull riding. “It taught me how to set my hips on a bull because if you get pulled off your rigging it’s not going to go so well for you.” After a horse flipped over on Jackson in the chutes, he decided the event had hit its expiration date in his eyes. His respect for the event has yet to waver though. “I always try to help the bareback and saddle bronc riders pull their rigging because I figure if they are doing this as seniors then they are tougher than I am. I have all the respect in the world for them.”
As a welder Jackson is no stranger to both hard work and toughing it out. Five years ago he added iron work to his resume. “There is good money in iron work and I am not afraid of heights. We put up a lot of steel buildings and the work just kind of fit my personality.” There is almost nothing more satisfying for Jackson than watching a 100-foot building take shape. He might love his job, but competing in the NSPRA is still Jackson’s favorite activity. “If you are over 40 and don’t want to grow up or are looking for something to get out of your life slump, senior pro rodeo is the greatest for finding a relief in life and a new family. The support of the association and the cowboys is addicting.”