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 […]
By Lindsey Fancher
Fifteen gallons of chocolate milk is what fueled Joshua (Jimmy) Love to Junior High Nationals all the way from Eaton, CO to Perry, GA. Qualified in the saddle bronc, ribbon roping, team roping, and tie down, fourteen-year-old Jimmy made the 24-hour trek with dad, Josh, and team roping partner, Rafael (Raf) Maldonado. “My dad was so annoyed with us. We were full of energy the whole time,” comments Jimmy. “Fourteen naps and four meals is all that he knows of the trip,” counters Josh who drove the whole way. The jackpots held at the NJHSFR were long. “We were up until five or six in the morning. We were on a roll, it was a pretty good trip,” recalls Jimmy in hindsight despite the one thing that he would have changed about Nationals was to “Go to bed a little earlier get a little bit more rest.”
Jimmy got his ticket to nationals after finishing third in the steer saddle bronc and winning the average heeling for Raf. This was his first year rodeoing in junior high and quite a few of the junior high rodeos were missed throughout the year, “It was a battle,” said Jimmy, “but it’s hard to lose when you’re working harder than most everyone else competing.” Alongside his older sister, Jaycie (17), Jimmy practices rigorously. “No matter how late he gets home he’s out roping the dummies and goats,” said Josh, who rode saddle broncs and continues to team rope and pickup. Although Josh is Jimmy and Jaycie’s primary coach, it takes an army to support the Love kids in their rodeo endeavors, “I’m using the best ropes from Coy Upchurch with Fastback Ropes. Jessica Wahlert from Cinch also takes great care of us,” expresses Jimmy.
Having gotten started on horseback before he could walk, Josh taught Jimmy how to rope steers when he was seven years old. Alongside his sister, Jimmy got familiar with a rope in an arena and out working cattle. When friends need help with cows, it’s the Love family that they call, “As soon as they were big enough to swing a rope, we’ve done whatever day work we need to do on our horses, my kids are always the hands I bring with me, since it’s just me,” says Josh. Between working the rodeo arena and working cattle on the pasture, the difference to Jimmy is simple, “One you go to win and the other you have fun.”
Jimmy’s mantra before getting on roughstock is, “Let the stock buck and let me ride harder.” Going to junior rodeos, gymkhanas, and jack pots with his dad and two sisters, Jaycie, and Lexi (11), Jimmy began riding steers at a young age. He is just now beginning to try horses since he will be in high school next season. In high school, he hopes to make it to Nationals all four years in the saddle bronc, team roping, and tie down. “My dad’s the main reason why I ride saddle bronc,” said Jimmy, “He taught me everything I know.”
From various jack pots, Jimmy has a trophy closet full of eight saddles and a horse trailer. The greatest trophies he’s leaving his first and last CJHSRA season with is his new best friend, Raf, and many other connections that are going to contribute to Jimmy’s future successes. He has had to make the most of the family’s ranch horses. High school rodeo friends, Ricky and Body Lambert hope to help Jimmy find a higher caliber calf horse. “It means so much so many people believe in my kids,” said Josh. Pastor Dave Shumpert, who just recently baptized Josh, hosts rodeo nights and helps instill within Jimmy his faith. “I wouldn’t feel right having a story written about me without Christ in it,” he said, “I have Him to thank for everything.”
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.