“Work with me, Blue Bell,” Natalie says. Their hearts begin to race as they jet out into the arena. They make their way around three […]
Team Cavender’s Sam Gallagher
Written by: Siri Stevens< Back to Articles
“Find who your real self is and bring out the best.”
Sam Gallagher, from Brighton, Colorado, has made it three years in a row to the National High School Finals. He served on the board for the high school rodeo association, where he served as the Chute Dog Director. “That taught me to be flexible. Some calls are hard to make and you’ve got to make it clear to the contestant what they did wrong and that way they learn,” said the senior. “Helping them helped me.” He has taken that knowledge with him through the high school years, helping others learn the skills he has acquired. “I’ve been doing this since 6th grade. My passion is to help younger kids get in the sport of rodeo and be the best they can – in and out of the arena.”
He competes in team roping, tie-down roping, and steer wrestling. His accolades – which includes saddles, buckles, scholarships, and awards, caught the attention of the watchful eyes of the Cavender’s Rodeo Team. “I was recommended to their team and that’s how they heard about me,” he said. “We went down to the Summit, in Tyler, Texas, and it was amazing. They had so much for us to learn.” He learned the history of the company, and the family roots and heritage they bring to the 95 stores and employees. “They brought in pro people – hearing from them helped us see what it would be like to be on the road. Meeting the Cavender family was a great deal – they are amazing people.”
Sam learned the events he competes in through several avenues, including schools and clinics both near and far. The Senior at Holy Family in Broomfield, started at a local weekly rodeo put on by Circle A in Keenesburg, Colo. “It was a blast – I entered every event, even the calf riding.” His whole family went, parents, Paul and Angela; his older brother, David, who is now 20 and attends UW, and two older sisters – Jody 22 and Brittany Smith, 28. He settled on steer wrestling, team ropes, and calf ropes a little.
He wants to continue to give back to the sport. “When I was growing up through high school, and I saw how the pros were helping the younger guys out. Now I get to help others both inside and out of the arena. I like to encourage people to do their best – put in the extra hour and I do it right with them.” He learned from his brother, David Gallagher, and he learned from Eric Martin. He’s also been to Jace Honey’s school and Tom Carney’s Steer Wrestling 101, held at University of Wyoming. “He broke it down – everything I’ve been taught.” Chism Doecheff was another important teacher.
When he graduates in May, he will go to UW. “I understand it’s very important to have a backup plan and I want to run equipment and get a business degree,” he said. “And rodeo – I’m going to try to make the CPRA Finals this summer, then go to a few pro rodeos. His ultimate goal is “to make the college finals my freshman year, then the circuit finals, then the NFR.”
Now he helps others. “My passion to help younger kids get in the sport of rodeo and be the best they can – in and out of the arena. I learned it through my parents – how to be good and humble. I’ve been Catholic my whole life and it teaches me not to brag and be humble and stay humble.”