story by Siri Stevens Kayson Jensen started riding bareback bucking ponies at 7 years old at his house in Elmo, Utah. “They weren’t intentionally supposed […]
Association MemberJoin Rodeo News
Meet the Member Sage Thacker
story by Terry Rhodes
For RMPRA member Sage Thacker, caring for others and giving back comes quite naturally. It’s in her DNA. Literally. Both of her parents, Kevin and Merilee give freely of their time and abilities to those that could use a hand and they have instilled that same quality in Sage. “Kids that want to learn how to ride come to our place and Dad gives them lessons on one of our horses. He just wants to help people and see them improve. My mom works with special needs kids in our community. Through her example I now have a special place in my heart for these special people. After school I work with a man that has special needs. He has become the light of my life and always makes my day better. I help him learn and develop simple life skills and find it to be very rewarding to see him happy. When I am not with him I perform hearing screenings on new born babies at the hospital.”
Sage has been in the association for the last four years and also is in the NIRA. She’s on a full ride rodeo scholarship at Weber State University where she is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in nursing. “I’m in my third year now and I would like to specialize in labor delivery or pediatrics.” She’s also looking at other options in health care and is close to have a bachelor’s in health promotion and may look a coaching opportunities.
She enjoys going to the RMPRA events says it’s a great chance for her to be with her family and reconnect with friends during the summer. Breakaway roping is her event and she currently has the lead in the standings. She was Reserve Year End Breakaway Champion in 2014 and won the title in 2013, so she is in great shape to collect another title this year.
Sage grew up in West Bountiful, Utah in a rodeo family with parents that competed in rodeo so it was no surprise that she began in junior rodeos as young girl. “My whole family rodeos along with my cousins and their kids. It’s really a life style for us. My Grandpa Roy probably taught me the most about roping. Between him and my dad they’re always there to help me practice. My dad is constantly making sure we have the best horses to compete on and working with what we have.” Her support group is her family. “My mom is an awesome lady. Even if I don’t do well she’s there to tell me I’m a winner; everyone is a winner in her book. She has taught me so much.”
Competing in breakaway roping, so much depends on the equine side of the team and Sage is glad to have a veteran like ‘Colonel’ to ride. “He’s probably about 20 and he gives me the perfect shot every time. He leaves really hard from the box and I think that gives me an advantage. He’s got an awesome stop and he’s taught me a lot about getting my balance right. I switched to him about a year ago and we’ve been working together to understand each other. He does his job very well and that makes my job easy.”
Sage keeps herself fit as well and does some cross-fit type training as well as road biking. She’s currently preparing for her first 100 mile road race. “Staying in shape gives me an edge I feel I need to compete at my best. It’s an all-woman bike race called Little Red”
Goals are to continue to rodeo, complete her education, begin a career, and when the right cowboy comes along, get married and start a family.