Rodeo sisters buckle down to win
Citizen Telegram Sports Editor
SILT — Taylor and Tianna Davis had different obstacles to overcome while trying to win a belt buckle at the Carbondale Wild West Rodeo this past summer. Despite those obstacles, both wound up with the same result.
The sisters from Silt claimed victory in the junior editions of their respective events last month, with Taylor winning the title in junior barrel racing and Tianna claiming the overall title in junior bull riding. It’s the latest accomplishment for the pair during what’s been a short, but successful, rodeo run already.
“It was so great to do this,” the 13-year-old Taylor said. “I wasn’t sure how things were going to turn out at the end.”
The pair aren’t the only teenage girls from Silt who won a belt buckle. Sydney Surin claimed the rodeo’s barrel racing championship by a wide margin, beating veteran barrel racer Tina Collins by a wide margin in the money winning standings. Surin, who earlier this year qualified for the barrel racing semifinals of The American rodeo in Arlington, Texas, won $3,528 in prize money at Carbondale to beat out the second-place total of $2,236 won by Collins.
Then again, the Davis sisters have seen their fair share of success in the rodeo arena. Last year, Taylor joined Ryley Beach of Loma to win the world title in ribbon roping at the Little Britches Rodeo in Pueblo. Tianna, prior to winning the junior bull riding title this year, had won the steer riding championship at Carbondale for two consecutive years before moving into junior bulls this season.
Taylor Davis ran into a problem as the barrel racing events continued in Carbondale for her and her horse, Taz. Taylor said Taz is the kind of horse who likes variety, so getting her to follow the clover-leaf pattern in the same arena or a ninth or 10th time took some coaxing.
It worked, though, as Taylor wound up being a money winner for seven of the final eight rodeos. It helped move her to a winning total of $478 to top the second-place total of $384 by Jesse Bright.
Taylor was the top money winner for only two weeks this season — consecutively on July 3 and 10. She wound up second in the event standings behind Bright during the Aug. 21 season finale, but she’d built up enough of a lead to stay atop the season standings.
Tianna was under the proverbial gun to make it to Carbondale every week as the season wore on since she missed the first three rodeos of the year for various reasons. By rodeo requirements, participants in each event are required to participate in at least nine of the 12 Carbondale rodeos to be eligible for the overall event championship.
So after missing the first three rodeos, Tianna had no choice but to compete in each rodeo until the season finale on Aug. 21.
She competed well, also. Tianna finished as the top money winner in the event with $441. That placed her just ahead the second-best money winner, Colten Fritzlan of Rifle, who finished with $427.
Both Taylor and Tianna will be competing in high school rodeo for the upcoming fall and spring seasons.
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A long, event-filled list of recreational leagues and classes usually fills the Rifle Parks and Recreation Department’s winter calendar.