BRIDGEPORT, Texas – Whether it’s the classic style of a bronc or the spinning, twisting motion of a bull, the bucking animals are a big part of what makes a ProRodeo so special.
In Bridgeport, that athleticism falls on the animals from Dallas-based Carr Pro Rodeo, which will provide the livestock for the Butterfield Stage Days PRCA Rodeo, set for 7 p.m. Friday-Saturday, May 11-12, at Bridgeport Riding Club Arena.
“I’ve always tried to get the best animals I can get, whether they’re bulls or horses,” said Pete Carr, owner of the livestock company. “Everybody thinks I’m a horse guy, and I am; I just want to be a bull guy, too.”
The best cowboys in the business like Carr’s approach to raising bucking animals; they also like it when they see the Carr name attached to any rodeo. They make their livings on the backs of these tremendous athletes, so they want to have the best opportunity to win money – in rodeo, there are no guarantees; a contestant only gets paid if he places higher than most in the competition.
“Any bucking horse you know you have a chance to win on is one you want to get on,” said Jesse James Kirby of Dodge City, Kan. “That’s what you have when you go to a Carr rodeo. I think Pete Carr is doing a damn good job of supplying a bunch of really good bucking horses.”
Bull riders are saying the same things; just ask Trey Benton III, who won the Mercedes, Texas, rodeo in mid-March after scoring 91 points on Missing Parts, a dark brindle Carr recently acquired.
“He was pretty wolfy around to the right just at the gate,” Benton said of the energetic bull’s bucking motion. “He was really good. He just stumbled at the five-second mark, but I think he was even more after he stumbled. He got after it.
“You have to have a good bull to score 91, and I got one there.”
Benton wants that to happen a lot more, and that gives the Rock Island, Texas, cowboy plenty of incentive to know where Carr Pro Rodeo bulls will be bucking.
“Whenever a guy’s trying to make a perfect pen of bucking bulls, that’s great,” said Benton, 20, who is in the middle of the world championship race and run for the rookie of the year award in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, ranked in the top five in the world standings by mid-April. “When you’re trying to improve your pen all the time like Mr. Carr, then that means a lot to us.”
Carr has done that. Over the last few months, he has invested into growing his bull herd.
“I’ve got some good ones in addition to Missing Parts,” Carr said. “I’ve got some great bulls in The Mexican, Black Ice, Black Powder, Motown and Panther that went to a lot of the winter rodeos. I have some more outstanding bulls that I haven’t bucked just yet, but I think all of them have a lot of potential.”
The rodeo world has taken notice.
“Pete Carr has stepped up a lot with his bulls,” said Paul Peterson, the flankman for Carr Pro Rodeo who has been with the company since its inception. “There are a lot of new bulls at the ranch, and I’d say most of them are the kind you can take anywhere and they’ll be pretty strong.
“There are also some young bulls we still don’t know much about, but they look like they’re going to be great.”