Meet the Member Brecken Tullis
story by Lindsay Humphrey After four years of success in the Young Guns association in Dodge City, Kansas, one thing continues to allude Brecken Tullis […]
story by Michele Toberer
For Pax Vogel of Cottonwood Falls, Kansas, the cowboy lifestyle led him straight to the rodeo arena. Just as rodeo was born from the challenge of everyday cowboys showing their skills used in regular ranch work; Pax’s skills began in the very traditional way of helping his dad, Adrian Vogel on the ranch. Pax lives with his parents, Adrian and Abbey, and his three younger sisters, Piper, 12, Lola, 10, and Remi, 1, on a 20-acre ranch between two cattle ranches that Adrian works for. Pax is a regular cowboy assistant to his dad and spends most of his summers alongside him, working cattle on the W Bar Ranch in Matfield Green, Kansas, owned by the Wight family; and the Robbins Ranch in Hymer, Kansas, owned by the Lauer family. Pax competed in junior ranch rodeos and showed ranch horses up until two years ago when he started competing in junior rodeos. Once he got a taste of calf roping at the junior rodeos he has never looked back. Pax spent his rookie year with the Kansas Junior High School Rodeo Association last year, as an 8th grader at Chase County Junior High School.
“I like to help my dad take care of all the yearling cattle. We check them every week and I enjoy doctoring the cattle and fixing water gaps or whatever else needs done. But, competing in rodeo has really been great and I enjoyed my first year with the KJHSRA.” Pax finished the season as the 2019 KJHSRA Reserve Champion Tie Down Roper, and in 4th place in the state in ribbon roping, with his sister Piper as his partner. Piper also competed in the KJHSRA as a breakaway roper.
Competing at his first national finals rodeo was quite an experience for Pax, who brought along his favorite calf horse, Mica to compete in Huron, South Dakota in tie down and ribbon roping. Mica is a 9-year-old bay mare that the family has had since she was a filly and was trained by Pax’s dad. Although Pax and Piper didn’t have the luck they hoped for at nationals, Pax was very grateful for the success he found in tie down roping. He left Huron as the 4th place in the world tie down roper after placing 4th in the short round. “It was a lot of fun. There was a lot of good competition there which makes it really fun, plus I won two buckles and I received a scholarship and money from the jackpot. It was a good deal.”
Pax has competed at several junior roping competitions and has qualified for short rounds at major events such as the Joe Beaver Easter Roping, the Rising Stars Roping, and at Cody Ohl’s World Jr. Calf Roping. “I love to rope, and I love the competition, so it’s really a lot of fun when it all pays off and you win. Before I rope, I like to watch some of my best runs ever, and it prepares me as I picture how I want my run to go.” Pax also likes listening to professional calf roper, Tyson Durfey, “Tyson makes smooth consistent runs every time. He knows how to win, and his mental game is a strong aspect of his competition.”
This season, Pax looks forward to joining the high school ranks, both educationally and in rodeo. He will attend Manhattan Virtual School from home, so he can focus more of his time on calf roping and looks forward to being a part of the KHSRA. So far, his favorite subject in school has been math. He has also enjoyed playing basketball in the winter, but mostly focuses his time on ranch work and rodeo.
Pax is grateful to Dustin Raupe from Douglas, Kansas, who helps him with his roping. Taylor Raupe, Dustin’s daughter, was Pax’s team roping partner last season. “Dustin always tells me to just go make my run and reminds me ‘don’t beat yourself.’” Pax is also grateful to the Lauer family of the Robbins Ranch, who helps sponsor his rodeo aspirations each season.
“After high school my ultimate goal is to be a professional calf roper, but I also plan to work on the ranch with my dad.”
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