Meet the Member Emily Finney
story by Lindsay Humphrey Last summer, Emily changed her last name from Vinton to Finney when she married Doug. It was a match made at […]
story by Lindsay Humphrey
“I’m just happy to be here and I’ve really had a lot of fun this summer,” said Lacey Camp after a three-year hiatus from the summer rodeo run. “For the last three years I was working in Arizona, and they don’t have many amateur rodeos through the summer months because it gets so hot there.” Lacey moved to southwest Nebraska a year ago to be closer to family and friends. And rodeoing through the summer again? That was just a fringe benefit. As the M-SRA season ends, Lacey is leading the race for rookie of the year thanks to her roping skills with both steers and calves.
Originally from ranching country in Montana, Lacey’s family knew everything there was to about riding, roping and ranching. After her parents – Jason and Jodi Camp – broke into team roping, they added rodeo to that list. “I first picked up a rope in the fifth grade and started competing in junior rodeos the next year. Team roping was the first thing that I ever did because that’s what my parents first learned.” For the first few years, Lacey wasn’t what she would call serious about the sport. During her first trip to junior high nationals in 2009, Lacey experienced a mind shift when it came to rodeo.
“I finally realized that I could do big things in rodeo when I was at nationals and decided I wanted to be more serious about it from then.” The mental change was evidently the boost Lacey needed as she went to several more national final events in both junior high and high school. She continued that successful trajectory while competing for Casper Community College in Wyoming. She made the CNFR three out of four years in both of her events and even won a round as a senior in 2017. “The college finals is probably one of my favorite rodeos of all time. But I also really enjoyed the Northern Rodeo Association Finals in Montana.”
As Lacey is in her first year competing in the M-SRA, she’s been impressed by how many rodeos she can go to in one weekend. “All the rodeos I’ve been to have been really good and the payouts have been great as well. Not to mention there are lots of contestants that enter each one.” Even though this is Lacey’s first year, she already knows which events she wants to compete in next year. Although she made it to Sutherland, she missed the rest of Cowboy Christmas because of work. “Hopefully I won’t have to work over the fourth next year because I would really like to make it to Gothenburg.”
As a radiologic technologist at Ogallala Community Hospital, Lacey oversees mammograms, cat scans and all things x-rays. “I can definitely say my boss here and my whole department are really good about making things work with everyone. We work four 10-hour shifts, so I’ve been able to take quite a few Fridays off so I can make it to rodeos.” As Lacey’s advanced in her career, she’s had to get quite a few extra certifications. She’s proud of how far she’s come and hopes to continue this upward trajectory. “Coming into the summer, I just wanted to make the finals, but it looks like I might have a shot at rookie of the year.”
Roping in both breakaway and on the heading side has helped Lacey in the rookie race. Of course, practicing at home in Arthur has also been a contributing factor to Lacey’s success. “With work it can be really hard to practice because I don’t usually get home until 6:30. So I have to thank my boyfriend because he’s really good about having the arena ready and calves up. Sometimes he’ll even have the horses saddled.” Lacey makes every run count by “practicing with a purpose.” Since her main mount is 17, she doesn’t need to do a lot of runs on him. Most of her time spent practicing is on her up-and-coming rope horses.
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