Meet the Member Benny Proffitt

by Rodeo News

story by Lily Weinacht

Jr. Boy World Champion Saddle Bronc Steer Rider

Benny Proffitt of Canadian, Texas, capped off his rookie season in the NLBRA as the 2018 Junior Boy Saddle Bronc Steer Riding Champion. The 13-year-old competed in five rodeos in the Texas Panhandle Little Britches Rodeo Association and covered all five of his steers to qualify for the NLBFR. “Those steers at the Finals were really good,” says Benny, who won the first two rounds. “During the short round, I got a re-ride, and on my re-ride I got bucked off, but I had enough points coming into the Finals that it turned out pretty good.”
While it was Benny’s first year in the Little Britches, he’s been rodeoing since he was 5, riding sheep and roping, while also watching his dad compete in ranch rodeos. He also competes in the TJHRA in tie-down roping, ribbon roping, team roping, goat tying, chute dogging, bareback steer riding, and saddle bronc steer riding. “I like the calf roping because you have to have a good horse, and you have to be good on the ground and be quick and strong, kind of like in the bronc riding,” says Benny. “In bronc riding, you have to be pretty stout to lift the rein and stay underneath you, and be quick on every jump.”
Prior to the NLBFR this summer, Benny was the reserve state champion for Texas in the saddle bronc steer riding, and his friend Gus Gaillard was the state champion. The friends repeated the same wins on the national stage, Gus finishing first in the nation and Benny second with just two points separating them. “We’re real good friends, so it’s pretty fun competing together. I’d like to thank all of my family, the Gaillards, the Hills, Mike Johnson, and everybody that’s helped me out. I couldn’t do it without them. Mike Johnson brings stock to the junior high rodeos and lets us borrow steers to practice on, and Gus and Lance Gaillard invite us to their house to ride steers,” says Benny. His 8-year-old brother, Rankin, rides calves, and their cousin Cutter Kennedy rodeos with them as well.
Between rodeos, Benny helps his parents, Jarrett and Shyla Proffitt, run their ranch. “I really like being a cowboy. You get to do a lot of cool things like train horses, rope, and raise a good set of cows. It’s a pretty good life.” Benny is also an eighth-grader at Canadian Middle School, where he plays basketball and runs track.
He plans to compete in Little Britches again this season and enter in more events now that he knows what to expect. “I’ll do the steer bronc riding and calf roping for sure, and maybe team roping and another roughstock event or two—I’ll just see what happens. I really liked how they ran the Finals rodeo. With real good stock contractors and everybody helping, it was a pretty good deal. When I’m older, I’d like to try and win the NFR in the bronc riding and calf roping, and the all around maybe. I’d like to win some more rodeos and do everything I can do.”

                © Rodeo Life Media Corporation | All Rights Reserved • Laramie, Wyoming • 307.761.9053

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