Futurity will showcase rising talent among broncs, cowboys alike
GOODING, Idaho – Rodeo fans in southern Idaho have always had an affection for saddle bronc riding, the sport’s classic event.
The organizers of the Gooding Pro Rodeo are offering another opportunity to see more bronc busting by hosting the Dirty Rotten Buckers, set for 2 p.m. Saturday, May 27, at Andy James Arena at the Gooding County Fairgrounds. Tickets are on sale now at GoodingProRodeo.com.
“Everybody in southern Idaho loves to watch good bucking horses, so I think this will go over really well,” said Mitch Pollock, a National Finals Rodeo qualifier who lives in nearby Twin Falls, Idaho. “Gooding is a small farm town, and yet they pack that place up every year for their rodeo. I wouldn’t be surprised if there’s a big crowd to watch bucking horses.”
Dirty Rotten Buckers is, at heart, a bronc futurity, a chance for stock contractors to test the ability of their younger horses that could grow to be some of the elite buckers on the rodeo trail today. It’s also a competition for the cowboys that ride the wild beasts.
“The competitions are equally the same,” said Gene King, who co-owns Dirty Rotten Buckers with Jeremy Gordon. “There are some of these events that are team deals, but that’s not going to be the case with this. If you have one horse you want in the competition, then you can bring it.
“For the cowboys, it’s a pretty good deal. We want the college kids, the young bronc riders, to be part of this. We’ll plan to buck some 30-35 horses, so we’ll only need about 45 head of livestock. We’re going to have $20,000 in added money, $10,000 for the cowboys and $10,000 for the horses.”
That’s a hefty purse, and it will be part of the attraction to all competitors hoping to be involved. Cowboys and horse owners are looking forward to taking a shot at the lion’s share of the money in the pot.
“It’s nice to know that most of the horses at this futurity are going to be proven, so it’s nice and reassuring that you know you have a chance,” Pollock said. “They put up quite a bit of money, so that’s nice. I don’t know another futurity that pays their bronc riders like this. With that much money added, it gives the bronc riders a chance at a nice paycheck.”
King said last year’s winner pocketed more than $4,000. That kind of cash will be a nice drawing card for high-level cowboys looking to continue to build on their game.
“It’s a great event,” King said. “There are a lot of great, up-and-coming cowboys that come, and we get a lot of great, up-and-coming livestock that you can watch. It’s a very unique event because a lot of time you won’t get this much young livestock at a rodeo at that many young cowboys. You’re going to see a lot of action in a short time during this futurity.”
Action just what rodeo fans have come to expect in this part of the world. The College of Southern Idaho has long been a wonderful training grounds for rodeo contestants who want to make a living in ProRodeo, but there’s more to the rodeo history on this landscape.
Each year, the Gooding Pro Rodeo features the greatest rodeo stars in the game. The event is set for Thursday, Aug. 17-Saturday, Aug. 19, with a special “Beauty and the Beast” performance set for Wednesday, Aug. 16.
By adding the Dirty Rotten Buckers to the schedule of events at the Gooding County Fairgrounds, fair and rodeo manager Don Gill indicated this is a great opportunity to build on an already-successful program.
“We’re excited to work with Gene and Jeremy and everybody with Dirty Rotten Buckers to have this futurity in Gooding,” Gill said. “I know the people who love to watch rodeo and have a great time doing it are going to love this event. They’re going to have a chance to see some future stars, whether they’re cowboys or broncs, and they’re going to have a lot of fun while they’re at it.”
That is, after all, a Gooding tradition.