Untouchable

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The Calgary Stampede stud Grated Coconut claimed the U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Company/PRCA Bareback Riding Horse of the Year Award for the fourth consecutive year and a record-tying sixth time (2003-04, 2006-09).

With the top nod, Grated Coconut ties the legendary bucking horse Descent of Beutler Brothers & Cervi, who also garnered six awards (1966-69, 1971-72). Grated Coconut claimed his sixth Canadian Professional Rodeo Association award this year as well. Grated Coconut, 12, is the son of dam, Coconut Roll, and sire Wyatt Earp.

Bareback riding equine stars Wise Guy, of the Classic Pro Rodeo string, and Growney Brothers' Moulin Rouge finished second and third in the voting, respectively.

In the saddle bronc riding, Spring Planting, of the Flying 5 Rodeo string, earned her first USSTC/PRCA Horse of the Year honor. The blue roan mare is a source of pride for the Hutsell family, since she was raised on the family's eastern Washington ranch. She is the daughter of dam, Jubille, and sire Spring Break, also Flying 5 Rodeo bucking horses.

"She is solid from when the gate opens until the whistle blows," said Chad Hutsell, general manager of Flying 5 Rodeo. Frontier Rodeo's Let 'er Rip finished second and Harry Vold Rodeo's Painted Valley came in third in the voting.

Buckeye of Silverado Rodeo Company has been honored as the USSTC/PRCA Bucking Bull of the Year posthumously. The bull sustained a back injury in an altercation with another bull in a pen. The bull was treated by veterinarians at Texas A&M University Veterinary Medical Teaching Hospital in College Station for about 10 days. However, extensive efforts were not successful.

Owner Harlan Robertson was greatly moved to have Buckeye honored. "He just bucked like heck," said Robertson of the Wrangler NFR qualifier and son of Panhandle Slim. Reigning World Champion Bull Rider J.W. Harris was bucked off Buckeye in their one meeting.

"He had it all," said Harris, the PRCA World Standings leader. "He would jump five feet into the air, kick over his head and turn back. That is what you want in a bucking bull. If you rode him, you would be 90 points. He bucked."

The honor is Robertson's second. His bull Biloxi Blues was USSTC/PRCA Bull of the Year in 2006. Robertson submitted Buckeye for honors at the request of bull riders. "It was special to me (to win) in 2006, but this is more special," Robertson said.

Beutler & Son Rodeo's Little Lightning earned the No. 2 spot in the voting, while Cervi Championship Rodeo's Multi-Chem Texas Cocktail finished third.

Stock contractors submitted nominations for two animals from their herds for the livestock of the year awards. The top 30 cowboys in bareback riding, saddle bronc riding and bull riding, as of Sept. 1, were mailed a ballot with the list of eligible stock in their event. Ballots returned by Oct. 9 were counted for the awards. The livestock, and their owners, will be honored at the annual PRCA Awards Banquet, Dec. 2 at the South Point Hotel, Casino & Spa in Las Vegas.