DEAR ROPER,

Spin to Win Rodeo - - News -

By the grace of God, there are still men and women who make their liv­ing in the sad­dle. Un­for­tu­nately for us at Spin To Win Rodeo, ed­i­tor Bob Welch is head­ing back to that life after only cow­boy­ing part-time while he cap­tained this ship for the last 16½ years.

In a some­times-fly-by-night in­dus­try like rodeo, Bob’s steady hand and ded­i­ca­tion to the Cow­boy Code set him apart, some­thing you un­doubt­edly no­ticed by the way he han­dled con­tro­versy on these pages over the years. The guy has per­spec­tive, and that per­spec­tive tem­pered his writ­ing and taught those of us who worked with and for him to take a deep breath and re­mem­ber that life’s about a lot more than a Mon­day morn­ing dead­line or an all-night drive be­tween Salt Lake and Cheyenne.

Six years ago this month, Bob took me with him to Pikes Peak or Bust in Colorado Springs, Colo., on my first out­ing as a mem­ber of this team. With­out hes­i­ta­tion, he in­tro­duced me to a quiet, kind-of-quirky guy who he was work­ing with on a train­ing ar­ti­cle. That guy was Der­rick Be­gay, and that in­tro­duc­tion set the tone for the rest of my ca­reer. Bob’s method was al­ways to get to know the good guys, tell their sto­ries and count on them to help shape this mag­a­zine. That’s the same style our ed­i­tor Ken­dra San­tos has used in the years she’s re­lied on Jake Barnes and Clay O’Brien Cooper to be our guid­ing lights, and it’s the strat­egy you can al­ways count on us to use go­ing for­ward.

Speak­ing of good guys, we’ve got an is­sue jam-packed with them. Erich Rogers (pg. 25), Barnes (pg. 30) and Cooper (pg. 40) all dis­cuss how crit­i­cal com­mu­ni­cat­ing a strat­egy and stick­ing with it is to suc­cess at ev­ery level of the game. On page 60, you’ll want to sit down and take a quiet mo­ment to read San­tos’ take on the five-year an­niver­sary of Broc Cresta’s pass­ing. She’s able to con­nect with Broc’s friends and fam­ily, in­clud­ing the NFR cow­boys who loved him, in a way no other writer can.

We hope that while Bob may be out there rid­ing fences right now, you’ll see his lead­er­ship still ev­i­dent for years to come in this mag­a­zine. Our goal is and will al­ways be to tell the sto­ries you want to read, with the rop­ing ad­vice that will help you write your own story in the arena.

PETER ROB­BINS PHOTO

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