LAS VEGAS – Some guys find pain relief in high-dollar medicine; bareback rider Casey Colletti has a different form.
“Eighteen thousand (dollars) makes all the pain go away,” Colletti said after his 87.5-point, round-tying ride Monday night during the fifth round of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
Colletti rode Pickett Pro Rodeo’s Top Flight for what was the round victory and was in position to win the round outright with the potential to collect $18,630. However, four-time world champion Bobby Mote later matched the score with his ride on Andrews Rodeo’s PTSD Power Play, so the cowboys each pocketed $16,677.
Still, it’s a great night of work for the Pueblo, Colo., cowboy, who attended Garden City (Kan.) Community College. What’s more impressive is that Colletti is riding with a severely sprained MCL in his right knee.
“It’s not very easy,” he said. “Tonight was a little bit easier because that horse was just super amazing and outstanding, leaping in the air and giving me a lot of time.
“My hat’s off to the Justin Sportsmedicine team. Those guys and Dr. Tandy Freeman are amazing. I don’t even want to take off the tape right now. I want to leave it on for five more days.”
If it works, he might just do it. This marks the second straight year the Colorado cowboy has won the fifth go-round, known for featuring the most electric bucking animals in the business. Colletti was the third cowboy to ride, so he had to sit through the rest before finding out the results.
“It’s kind of tough sitting up there on the top of the bucking chutes,” he said. “You can name off every horse in that pen, and everybody’s going to beat you.”
It didn’t happen. What did was a confidence-booster.
“I was fighting my head bad,” he said of his attitude prior to Monday’s ride. “I didn’t know what to do. I’ve been pretty healthy the last couple of years. I’ve had my ups and downs last year. It’s tough being hurt, because there’s nothing you can do.
“My confidence was at ground level yesterday, then today, I just knew I had a chance because J.R. Vezain won the 10th round on Top Flight (last year). I’m through the ceiling with confidence.”
That makes the pain go away, too.