Denise Nelson has been a Northwest Ranch Cowboys Association member for much of her life. The Midland, S.D. cowgirl grew up around horses on her […]
Written by: Siri Stevens< Back to Articles
Jackie Hobbs went to Waco with one goal in mind. “To win the All Around at the Finals and win for the year. And I did. There was a good race,” said the . “There were a couple younger girls that don’t have the cautious side that will give you a run for your money.” Jackie has been a member of WPRA for 8 years, getting her rodeo start doing speed events around her home in Illinois. “When I moved to Oklahoma, I went to the junior rodeos and all these kids were roping and that triggered something and I wanted to do it. My mom (Annette Hobbs) helped me a lot.”
She waited to start competing until she was a sophomore in high school. “I won state my junior year and reserve my senior.” She went to college in Vernon, Texas, on a rodeo scholarship, majoring in business. “I wish I’d have paid a lot more attention, but back then I was busy rodeoing. Like any kid, my first year in college, I stepped into a different rank and I got my butt kicked all over the arena. I worked hard, but the longer scores and different set ups took some time to get used to. But I came back my second year and won the Women’s Team, won the region, and won the nation.” From there, Jackie headed to Stephenville and won the region every year for the next three years. “There’s a combination of talent, try, and people with a great mental game. When you find the combination of all those, that’s when you have your threats.” Jackie has worked hard in all three areas.
Jackie put all three together at the 2013 WPRA Finals, taking the All Around title as well as the World Champion Tie Down Roper. She won second in the average heading and fourth in heeling. “There was a good spread in the breakaway and it came down the last round; Jackie was second high call behind Whitney DeSalvo. “I needed to win the round and win the average to win the world. She knocked me out by tieing me for that round and I lost by $90. I try not to be a bad losing. You can take things and learn from losing or you can throw a fit and have a bad attitude. Either way it doesn’t change it.”
Jackie finds being a girl in a guys’ industry “unbelievably hard. In the horse business, and the training business, you have to be pretty thick skinned.” She quit training outside horses this year, choosing instead to put on clinics. “I’ve gone all over the nation putting on 13 clinics this year,” she said.
She is about to make a few more changes in her life with her recent engagement to NFR Qualifier Charly Crawford. “We actually went on our first dates at Vegas last year during Finals. I rope in the World Series out there. We were acquaintances – the first time I met him I was dating one of his friends – this has been a few years back. When I go to Vegas I dress up – people don’t recognize me. He thought I was a buckle bunny and the next several times he saw me all he could do is apologize.”
The two have become involved in some horse deals and Jackie planned some of her clinics around his rodeo schedule. Their plans for a wedding include the idea of Vegas this year followed by a reception after the Finals is over at their place in Stephenville. “ We are trying to put together a facility that has arenas that can cross over as my calf arena and for him to practice for Vegas. We are also setting it up so we can give clinics.”
Jackie is hoping to concentrate on my team roping. “Obviously I have a great opportunity to do that.” Charly is a header. “I am getting to the end of my calf roping, but it seems like I haven’t really exhausted my avenues in team roping. That’s something I haven’t really done yet and I want to. The most challenging thing I’ve ever done is be the same number as a header and heeler.” She wants to build her arsenal of horses to be interchangeable. “I’ve got four right now of the best horses I’ve ever had. Between me and Charly we have between 10 and 15. I’m looking to get away from the pure cutting horses. I want the running blood crossed with some cow blood. That’s extremely hard to find.”