story by Lindsay Humphrey Last summer, Emily changed her last name from Vinton to Finney when she married Doug. It was a match made at […]
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Meet the Member Jamie Chaffin
story by Lindsay Humphrey
In 1999, Jamie Chaffin was a force to be reckoned with in the goat tying, breakaway roping, and barrel racing. So much so that she was named the great plains region all around cowgirl and champion goat tier. She did it again in 2000. When this Burwell, Nebraska, competitor shows up to an event, she’s not messin’ around. “I’ve always been competitive, and I like that I’m still able to compete even as I get older.” The comradery is also something Jamie rights home about when she’s on the rodeo trail. “You see that a lot more in rodeo than you do in other sports, I think. Especially as an adult.”
Jamie first joined the M-SRA as a senior in high school (1996), the same year she qualified for nationals for the first time. She then proceeded to study animal science at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln while continuing her rodeo career. “I wanted to become a veterinarian, but I got into chiropractic school in Minnesota first so that’s what I did.” While studying in the gopher state, Jamie filled her PRCA permit on the Great Lakes Circuit. “The cards were harder to fill back then just because we could only do it at a rodeo, not jackpots like they can now.”
Anymore, Jamie is only a one-event rodeo athlete. Chasing the clover-leaf pattern was the natural next step when her breakaway mounts didn’t pan out. “The mare I am running now was raised by my uncle. I was supposed to ride her to sell, but we clicked really well so I bought her.” The lack of chute help, and the calves to put in them, prevents Jamie from giving breakaway much thought anymore. Goat tying was her jam in the early days, but now barrel racing has taken center stage. After a quick break between colts and seasoned mounts, Jamie jumped back in the game in late 2016. “In 2017 I won the year-end with my mare for the barrels in the M-SRA and did the same in 2018.” The following year, 2019, she finished as the reserve champion barrel racer in the Prairie Circuit.
Born and raised in Burwell, Jamie quickly set up Chaffin Chiropractic and now serves a large radius of Nebraskans. When the pandemic hit, not much changed for this essential business owner. “My office has remained pretty busy even through all the COVID stuff. It slowed down a little bit, but that was also during calving season. I think the change had more to do with that than with the pandemic.” Sanitation practices have changed a bit, but Jamie has found her rodeo life to be impacted more than anything. “Usually by now I would’ve been to several rodeos, but at this point I’ve only been to a handful.” Planning her fourth of July run proved tedious as committees canceled and resumed events almost daily. By June, Jamie had already revised her plan three times.
Luckily, Jamie has a lot of options when it comes to finding the right event for her route. Not only does she compete in the PRCA and M-SRA, she’s also a frequent visitor to both the NSRA and KPRA arenas. Her focus has mostly remained on the Prairie Circuit as she has her sights set on Kissimmee. On the home front, the M-SRA is the most convenient. “One thing I like about these rodeos is that I can hit a large percentage of rodeos within three hours of my house. That’s pretty handy. And it’s one of the better amateur associations and I’ve been a member of several.” Jamie grew up running at the Burke Stampede Rodeo, but it wasn’t until 2018 that she finally pulled a check. A big one. “Burke is probably my favorite rodeo, but I had never won money there until I finally won it in 2018.”