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Five Tech alumni compete at Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas

Five Tech alumni compete at Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas

For pro-rodeo athletes and their fans, December is the best month of the year, and not just because it’s Christmas. December also ushers in the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of the University of Nevada-Las Vegas.

Established in 1958, the National Finals Rodeo, referred to as the NFR, is the equivalent of the Super Bowl or World Series for the cowboys of the PRCA (Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association) and cowgirls of the WPRA (Women’s Professional Rodeo Association). In 2012, it was estimated more than 175,000 people attended the event and the prize pool was more than $6 million.

There are seven Wrangler NFR events and the country’s 15 highest money-winners in each event compete for the world title in their respective events. The seven categories are: bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, barrel racing and bull riding. Five Texas Tech alumni competed in this year’s NFR. They include:

Shada Brazile of Decatur, ’00 BBA Marketing; Event: Barrel Racing;  Joined WPRA: 2006 with breaks taken to have two children. She recently started competing again; WPRA Career Earnings: $91,000

Hunter Cure of Holliday, ’06 BS Agricultural & Applied Economics; Event: Steer Wrestling;  Joined PRCA: 2006; PRCA Career earnings: $345,697

Ryan Gray of Cheney, Wash., ’06 BS Interdisciplinary Agriculture; Event: Bareback Riding;  Joined PRCA: 2002; PRCA Career Earnings: $1,222,704

Wes Stevenson of Lubbock, ’08 BS Interdisciplinary Agriculture; Event: Bareback Riding;  Joined PRCA: 1998; PRCA Career Earnings: $1,249,036

Stetson Vest, Childress of ’12 BS Animal Science; Event: Tie-Down Roping;  Joined PRCA: 2009; PRCA Career Earnings: $205,951

Written By Jennifer Ritz

CONTACT: Jane Piercy, Director of Development and External Relations, College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Texas Tech University at (806)742-2802 or jane.piercy@ttu.edu

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