NACOGDOCHES, Texas â Pete Carr is always on the lookout for the brightest talent in Pro Rodeo.
As owner of Pete Carrâs Classic Pro Rodeo, Carr knows the key to his business is to provide a great competition and incredible entertainment, all wrapped into a nice package that is rodeo. Whether itâs an athletic horse, a bucking and spinning bull or a great act, the purpose is to bring the best before the fans.
âAll anyone wants is a chance to win, and the fans are there to be entertainedâ Carr said. âI get a lot of feedback from our contestants and fans about the stock and that they really enjoy the clowns and specialty acts that we are able to secure for our events across the country. We try to rotate the top people in the business to keep it fresh and at a level the fans have come to expect and enjoy. â
Enter John Harrison of Soper, Okla. In 2013, he was selected to work the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo as the barrelman. Last season, he was recognized as the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Associationâs Comedy Act of the Year and the Coors Man in the Can, an honor that rewards the top clown in the association each year.
In addition to hysterical acts that showcase Harrisonâs talent and athleticism, the Oklahoma man serves as a valuable piece of the puzzle that helps make for a near-flawless performance each time he speaks.
âJohn is a true professional. He is good, clean family fun,â said John Gwatney, the production supervisor for Pete Carrâs Classic Pro Rodeo, the livestock producer for the rodeo. âItâs his rodeo background, because he grew up in this sport. He has perfect timing and helps us with the ebb and flow of a rodeo performance. He has a tremendous amount of talent and versatility that translates into a vital piece of the puzzle for a successful event.â
Thatâs the key to reaching fans with a variety of entertaining items. Whether itâs a trick riding display that will leave fans in awe or his parody of rodeo queens, Harrison has a lot of ammunition in his bag.
âI do this for the love of the sport,â he said âGrowing up with it, you enjoy it. Now I can actually make a living at it, so that helps.â
While family is a big part of who Harrison is, he realizes that rodeo serves as a foster family of sorts.
âThe friends and the âfamilyâ you meet on the road is a big deal for us,â he said. âPlus if it wasnât fun, I wouldnât do it.â
Roy Cooper is a Hall-of-Fame cowboy and an eight-time world champion.
He also is âRiding for the Brandâ as part of the Tate Branch Auto Group team, and he will carry that brand with him to numerous rodeos throughout the year and as a broadcaster on Ride TV, where he will be broadcasting from Western sports events from across the country.
Born in Hobbs, N.M., and raised on rodeo and ranching, Cooper won his first two Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association title in 1976, finishing that season as the top tie-down roper in the game and the Rookie of the Year. He followed that with five more gold buckles in that discipline and added the most coveted crown in the game in 1983 as the World Champion All-Around Cowboy.
That same season, he won the steer roping title, establishing himself as one of the greatest all-around ropers to have ever played the game, polishing off a Triple Crown season in which he won three titles in a given season. He owns 32 qualifications to the National Finals, most of which came in tie-down roping. In 1981, he also appeared at the NFR, heeling for World Champion H.P. Evetts.
Cooper has been inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame, the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame and the Rodeo Hall of Fame at the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum. He also is the father of three sons: Clint, a five-time NFR qualifier who grew up in Lovington, N.M.; Clif, a four-time NFR qualifier; and Tuf, a seven-time NFR qualifier and a three-time and the reigning world champion tie-down roper. Both Clint and Clif are part of the Tate Branch Auto Group team.
For his promotional work with âRiding for the Brand,â Cooper has received a newly wrapped Ram Truck, courtesy of Tate Branch Auto Group in the New Mexico communities of Hobbs, Artesia and Carlsbad.
âWe are extremely excited to have Roy Cooper join our team of cowboys and cowgirls who are âRiding for the Brand,â â said Joby Houghtaling, the director of operations of the Tate Branch Auto Group. âRoy is a living rodeo legend who will be fun to watch covering rodeos and other events across this great nation of ours on Ride TV.â