fbpx
Connect with us

News

How to make friends with angry bucking horses

“As soon as you find out what horse you’ve got, everybody’s asking somebody else or looking them up or trying to find videos or doing this or that. So, more of a game than what people see with the naked eye when they come to watch,” says bareback rider Connor Hamilton.

mm

Published

on

Connor Hamilton makes fast friends with horses that try to buck him off.

“Every time I walk up to my horse, I pat him down and brush him off, and comb their mane and make sure that they’re as comfortable and as happy as they can be,” the Calgarian told Western Standard in an interview.

After the chute opens, the horse does his best to buck the rider off, while the rider does his best to stay on. It’s just one of many ironies for rodeo contestants as they interact with other people’s animals.

“Each rodeo you go to, there’ll be a stock contractor, a different one. So the Calgary Stampede is a stock contractor. They own thousands of horses and bulls. And each time we show up, we get a draw and you get a different one pretty much every time,” Hamilton said.

“As soon as you find out what horse you’ve got, everybody’s asking somebody else or looking them up or trying to find videos or doing this or that. So, more of a game than what people see with the naked eye when they come to watch.”

Six years ago, Hamilton had his own stats and game footage as a right-winger with the Calgary Mustangs of the Alberta Junior Hockey League. Now he sees his stats at ProRodeo.com, as well as those of competitors and the horses they ride.

“We look them up and see the statistics on them and how they buck and what they do. And all of them are a little bit different. So you can kind of figure them out and learn which ones are nice and which ones are a little harder to ride and go from there.”

Hamilton, currently ranked 43rd in the world in bareback, gave Calgary Stampede horses Alert Warrior, Cinchy Witney, Bigtimin Houston , and Witless Margie their first pro rides this year.

The history was somewhat longer for Big Prime, a horse Hamilton rode at the Cody Stampede earlier in July. Contractor Frontier Rodeo has provided the horse to rodeos in Texas, Florida, Oklahoma, and Wyoming from March through July this year. Four of five riders lasted eight seconds on Big Prime, earning an average score of 80.88.

Contrary to the claims of some animal rights activists, Hamilton said rodeo animals are valued and treated well.

“Rodeo in general – the entire thing revolves around the animals, and if we didn’t have them, we wouldn’t have anything,” Hamilton said.

“People that own these animals and take care of them, they’re their livelihood so they don’t want a thing to happen to them. Any horse, bull, calf, or anything, it costs somebody money.”

Flank straps that agitate bulls and horses also serve to keep them safe.

“It helps them. If the horse jumps through the air and doesn’t kick and they land on their back end, they can twist an ankle or break a leg…That flank strap that comes back is super light. It doesn’t pull on them, doesn’t hurt them, doesn’t do anything. It just reminds them each time that they go that it’s time to do their job,” Hamilton said.

“It’s one of the best things for them and if these horses didn’t have jobs and didn’t have something that they loved to do, they wouldn’t be anything. They would be out in the field. I mean, they love what they do. They’re athletes just as much as we are.”

Hamilton said he hasn’t encountered many rodeo opponents and they are far from a competitor’s mind.

“We try to steer clear of that and just try to keep our heads pretty low,” he said.

“I know that there’s tough times for everyone and things going on in the world, but I feel like everybody’s best option is just to worry about what they’ve got right in front of them and just move on from there.”

Harding is a Western Standard correspondent based in Saskatchewan

News

Kenney says leadership review now would be ‘grossly irresponsible’

When asked at a Tuesday press conference by the Toronto Star about the Mullan letter, Kenney responded there has been opposition to his health care policy “since Day 1.”

mm

Published

on

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney last night rejected any calls for an immediate leadership review of him as “grossly irresponsible.”

Kenney has been under withering attacks for his handling of the COVID-19 crisis in Alberta, which led to the “resignation” Tuesday of Health Minister Tyler Shandro.

A UCP caucus meeting is set for Wednesday and Kenney’s leadership is expected to be the main point of discussion.

Dozens of grassroots UCP constituency associations have joined forces to call for an early leadership review of Kenney. The party currently has one scheduled in late 2022, only six months before the next provincial election.

UCP VP of policy Joel Mullan wrote an open letter in the Western Standard Tuesday called for Kenney to go immediately.

When asked at a Tuesday press conference by the Toronto Star about the Mullan letter, Kenney responded there has been opposition to his health care policy “since Day 1.”

“My responsibility is to look at the reality — not wish it away — and take the necessary steps to protect the health care system,” Kenney said.

“Let’s deal with those things at the right time, after this crisis.”

Kenney was asked if the internal turmoil within the UCP was what led to the resignation of Shandro.

“I am focused on getting through the fourth wave of COVID, not politics,” Kenney said.

“We have to protect the health care system to prevent needless deaths — we will not allow politics to distract us.”

Kenney said he knew when he brought in the fourth wave of COVID-19 lockdowns last week and flip-flopped on his promise not to bring in vaccine passports there would be internal grumblings.

He said the COVID-19 cabinet committee has had 12 hours of “respectful” meeting time with the full UCP caucus.

Kenney pointed out the People’s Party of Canada, which ran on an anti-vaccination platform, took 8% of the vote in Alberta in the federal election.

“Let me be blunt, those people likely voted for me in the last provincial election,” Kenney said.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Continue Reading

News

Kenney said shuffle was ‘time for a fresh start’

Dr. Deena Hinshaw said 29 Albertans died in the last 24 hours from COVID-19, including people who had been doubled-vaxxed, but included many people who hadn’t received any vaccinations at all.

mm

Published

on

Tyler Shandro wasn’t fired as health minister, he resigned, says Premier Jason Kenney.

Answering questions after Tuesday’s cabinet shuffle, Kenney said he accepted the resignation from Shandro from the health portfolio.

“Tyler’s dedication to the job has never been questioned. He brought his heart to the job,” Kenney said.

“It’s time for a fresh start.”

Kenney denied the shuffle was done to appease critics in the UCP caucus clamouring for action.

“We are focused on getting through the fourth wave of COVID-19, not politics,” said Kenney.

Kenney promoted Labour Minister Jason Copping to health and put Shandro in his old portfolio in labour.

Kenney said bringing in vaccine passports has had a dramatic effect on the number of people getting vaccinated.

A total of 23,000 people were vaccinated on Monday with 78,000 jabs being given out in the last few days.

A total of 81.4% of people have received at least one vaccine with 72.8% having two jabs.

Since they were made available on Sunday, more than two million Albertans printed out their vaccination passports, Kenney said.

He said Alberta Health Services has expanded the number of ICU beds in the province to 337.

Copping said he was honoured to be named health minister in this “pivotal time.”

He said he has three goals: to increase hospital capacities permanently, educate the unvaccinated on why they should get jabs and to prepare the hospital system for any future waves of COVID.

Dr. Deena Hinshaw said 29 Albertans had died in the last 24 hours from COVID-19, including people who had been doubled-vaxxed, but included many people who hadn’t received any vaccinations at all.

She said the province had identified 1,500 new cases in the last day from 13,600 tests for an 11.1% positivity rate.

There are 996 people in hospital as of September 21 with COVID, and 222 in ICU.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Continue Reading

News

Jean thinking about Fort Mac by-election run

On Tuesday, Jean posted a picture of himself speaking on a mic with a graphic of the riding.

mm

Published

on

Former Wildrose leader Brian Jean is musing whether or not to run in a by-election in Fort McMurray.

On Tuesday, Jean posted a picture of himself speaking on a mike with a graphic of the riding behind him.

“There is a byelection coming soon in my old riding in Fort McMurray. Should I run?” he asks Facebook followers.

“Let me know in the comments. Sign up on my webpage for updates.”

The riding was left vacate recently when UCP MLA Laila Goodridge resigned to run for the federal Conservatives. She easily won the riding capturing 67% of the vote.

Jean was the leader of the original Wildrose and was leader of the Opposition from 2015 to 2017.

He ran for the leadership of the UCP, but lost the race to Jason Kenney.

Jean has been increasingly slamming Kenney from the sidelines over his handling of numerous issues.

He called on Kenney to resign after his infamous Sky Palace dinner.

Jean, called on Alberta Premier Jason Kenney to resign in the wake of the Sky Palace Scandal.

“FOR THE GOOD OF THE UCP, FOR THE GOOD OF ALBERTA, IT IS TIME FOR JASON KENNEY TO RESIGN,” Jean wrote in capital letters on his Facebook page.

Dave Naylor is the News Editor of the Western Standard
dnaylor@westernstandardonline.com
Twitter.com/nobby7694

Continue Reading

Recent Posts

Recent Comments

Share

Petition: No Media Bailouts

We the undersigned call on the Canadian government to immediately cease all payouts to media companies.

355 signatures

No Media Bailouts

The fourth estate is critical to a functioning democracy in holding the government to account. An objective media can't maintain editorial integrity when it accepts money from a government we expect it to be critical of.

We the undersigned call on the Canadian government to immediately cease all payouts to media companies.

**your signature**



The Western Standard will never accept government bailout money. By becoming a Western Standard member, you are supporting government bailout-free and proudly western media that is on your side. With your support, we can give Westerners a voice that doesn\'t need taxpayers money.

Share this with your friends:

Trending

Copyright © Western Standard New Media Corp.