Ben Anderson Breaks Out in the Bareback Riding at Drayton Valley Pro Rodeo

Photo by Covy Moore/CovyMoore.com

EDMONTON, AB — All eyes were on Ben Anderson during the final performance of the Drayton Valley Pro Rodeo as he made his debut in the Bareback Riding this past Sunday, May 1. Although he missed his horse out resulting in a no score, Ben made a stellar ride, marking only the beginning of his Bareback Riding career. 

Ben looks forward to what this season holds and has his sights set on another National Finals Rodeo (NFR) with goals to compete in both events at the Canadian Final Rodeo (CFR). He will be heading to Ellensburg to compete in both the Saddle Bronc Riding and in the Bareback Riding at a rough stock event, although won’t be competing in the Bareback Riding for many other Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) events. His focus is to make the NFR in the Saddle Bronc Riding but has his sights set on the High Point title while competing on Canadian soil.

There has been much curiosity surrounding Anderson’s decision to crack out in another event, and it seems that a certain bareback rider inspired him to add the additional rough stock event to his resume.

“I got travelling with Clint Laye and that guys a beauty and he just rubs off on you.”

Anderson explained how Laye mentioned that he would have a good bareback style prompting Anderson to join him at a school Laye was putting on. Laye offered a rigging and glove to get Anderson completely set up.   

“I don’t know, I’ve got a knack for it. I kind of like it” said Anderson.

Anderson also remarked on his first NFR and his experience at The American where he opened up about the mental challenges that come with attending such large events. As in any sport, athletes need to have the mental tenacity to perform on the field of play consistently in order to be successful. Ben explained how this was a challenge for him during his time in Las Vegas at the NFR in 2021. 

“You know it wasn’t nerves. I went in every night and said I was going to kill it. But it was small things, like my reign and my feet; things that were basic.” 

Anderson also spoke to his experience at The American and how the chance to win 2 million dollars wasn’t something he could easily put aside. Large crowds and often larger paycheques is an enormous pressure that many young athletes (Anderson being only 22) must learn to navigate as they mature in their craft. 

Anderson is currently sitting 8th in Canada and 34th in the World Standings. Many people will be rooting to see this rising star walk away with the High Point title at the CFR with the hope he also finds his redemption at the 2022 NFR. With his current trajectory, it’s likely we will be hearing the accounts of Ben Anderson’s rodeo career for the foreseeable future in both Canada and south of the boarder.  

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