Dale Woodward hosted the annual Saddlebronc/Bareback School at Lakeland College in Vermilion on October 26 - 28.
“Rodeo needs horse riders, and this school is an effort to keep helping the younger generation of high school and college students. By the end of the weekend, you won’t be able to wipe the smile off the kids’ faces because of what they have all learned,” said Woodward who was a stock contractor for 34 years.
Participants had the opportunity to learn from the best with instructors being CFR qualifier and Canadian Champion, Dusty Hausauer; four-time Canadian Champion and two-time NFR qualifier-Dusty Lavalley; as well as three-time NFR qualifier and CFR qualifier Clay Elliott.
Participants from as far as Australia took in the school, and 18-year-old Mitch Nameth from Cupar, Saskatchewan who has been bareback riding for the past five months said, “I like the adrenaline rush and it is a good challenge; a one of a kind feeling really.”
Past rodeo queen and assistant horse trainer, Sarah Michel, from Airdrie grew up with bronc riders her whole life, and decided to participate as a bareback rider.
“I’ve always been fascinated with rough stock and the power of the horse; as well as the teamwork that goes into making a successful ride, and I wanted to give it a try for myself.
I knew if I wanted to get into it, that I wanted to do it right, and in a safe environment, learning from qualified people in order to have a chance to ask all of the questions that I had. I am excited, nervous, and definitely looking to learn; and who better to learn from honestly,” said Michel.
Woodward went on to thank stock contractors, C5, Calgary Stampede, Outlaw Buckers, and Groundbreaking Rodeo; as well as the instructors and participants.