Dear Roper (February issue)

Bob Welch talks about the February 2014 issue.
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Bob Welch talks about the February 2014 issue.
Credit: Hubbell Rodeo Photos

Credit: Hubbell Rodeo Photos

Dear Roper,

It’s with great pleasure that I am able to announce the first ever Spin To Win Rodeo Fans’ Favorite Awards, or Spinnies, in this February issue. Back in November, we opened up our Facebook page for fans to vote for their favorite header, heeler, head horse, heel horse and run of 2013.

This concept has actually been on our staff’s mind for years, now. For whatever reasons, it never coalesced into something doable until last fall. With the wonderful help of Montana Silversmiths and Reinsman, the idea became a reality.

Once we knew we could pull it off, the fan response was wonderful. We posted the nominees for the awards on our Facebook page, and votes came pouring in. To my surprise, the fans’ choice for the two winners for header and heeler of the year were quite decisive. The other categories were a bit more competitive.

Fans’ favorite contests have always appealed to me. There’s already a wonderful award for the person who has the best year from a financial standpoint, we didn’t want to duplicate that effort. The idea is to find out who the fans look up to, then find out why and write a story about it. We want to do more than award the best rope, we want to award the best people and horses, and I think we’re already doing that. The best example is Jade Corkill’s horse, Jackyl. Because he’s unregistered, he can never win the PRCA/AQHA Heel Horse of the Year. While there’s no way to know if would have or not, the fact that he couldn’t be in the running is a shame. By winning the heel horse of the year Spinny, he’s been given a much-deserved lifetime achievement award.

In the years to come, there will be more stories like his, and we have high hopes for this contest’s future. We thank each of you who participated and congratulate the winners.

Regards,

Bob