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  • Paul Cooley


Painted Pony Championship Rodeo, stock contractors for the Gerry Fire Department’s annual rodeo, have just received word that one of their bareback broncs has been chosen for the nationally televised Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas next month.

The six-year-old gelding, #844 George’s Bad Cat, is one of 100 bareback broncs selected from more than 800 eligible horses from rodeos across the nation. His selection is based on a vote of cowboys who have been on his back or who have seen him in action. Shawn Graham, owner of the Painted Pony firm, says this is a great honor since this is the only bucking bronc chosen from East of the Mississippi.

Graham will take three days to trailer his bronc on the 2700 miles trip to what is referred to as the “World Series of Rodeo”, a ten day event, December 1-10, offering $10 million in prize money. The top 15 cowboys and cowgirls who have won the most money in each of the seven rodeo events during the year will be competing. This rodeo, held in the Thomas and Mack Convention Center in Las Vegas, has sold out for 290 consecutive performances and is sanctioned by the Profession Rodeo Cowboys Association. Each night of this event will be televised on the CBS Sports Network at 10 PM.

Bad Cat was purchased by Graham at an auction four years ago following the NFR. He was impressed by the horse and had to borrow some money from a friend to pay for him, but that investment has paid off as Bad Cat is fast making a name for himself and Painted Pony Rodeo. He bucked the past two years in Gerry, with cowboys winning first and second on his back. The horse’s performance counts one-half of the score with the cowboy’s ride the other half.

More information concerning the NFR is available on-line at Painted Pony will again be the stock contractor for the 73rd annual Gerry Rodeo, scheduled for four performances, August 3-5, next summer. Additional information regarding this rodeo, which is the major fund raiser for the Gerry Volunteer Fire Department, can be found at .

Photo: Painted Pony Championship Rodeo’s bareback bronc George’s Bad Cat has been selected for the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas.

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