story by Rachel Hummel
Wyatt Applin, a 17 yr. old from Cortez, Colo., is a young man who knows what he wants out of life. “I like to look at life in the long-term. I know where I want to be in the next five to ten years and the only way I can get there is if I get up and go out and work for it. That’s my main focus right now, to work towards achieving my goals.”
Wyatt has been a member of the CSHSRA for two years and competes in the saddle-bronc riding and the calf-roping. “Unfortunately, I recently lost my calf roping horse, Shorty, to colic, so I’m not sure if I will get to continue to rope in the spring but I’m hoping I can have another horse by then. It will be difficult to get one that was as good as Shorty though. That horse always gave his all for me, and took me to Nationals twice in the Junior High.”
Wyatt first got started in rodeo at a fairly young age and says that he has been around the sport for as long as he can remember. “My grandpa owned some calves, so he was the one who got me started in roping. I only recently moved into the rough-stock side with saddle-bronc, which a family friend really got me interested in.” Wyatt’s experience with breaking and raising his own horses has definitely helped him out in the bronc-riding, and he has high hopes for his future in the sport.
“Being outside and riding horses is my favorite thing, besides actually going to rodeos,” Wyatt says. “I love to be outdoors and the sense of accomplishment from finishing a new horse is amazing.” In keeping with his love of the outdoors, Wyatt also greatly enjoys hunting, and says that he just recently went on his best hunt yet, which resulted in a 5 by 5 bull elk. “One day, I would really love to go to Africa and go on a big safari. I’ve always thought it would be cool to get a lion or something like that. That’s right up there on the top of my bucket list actually; right behind making it to the NFR,” he says with a laugh.
Wyatt also enjoys being active in functions at Dove Creek High School, where he is a Junior. He is active in the FFA and is also a member of the wrestling team. He says that he keeps his main focus on rodeo though, with the goal of making it to Nationals at the end of the season. He also has some longer-term plans to get a rodeo scholarship to college, though he isn’t sure of which one, and get a degree that deals with the environment and natural resources.
Wyatt would like to thank his family for all of their support and help throughout the years. He is grateful to his parents, Rick and Melissa Applin, as well as his brother Justin Samora, and his sister Katelyn Samora. “I would also like to thank Colt Brugeman and the Cress family, who have helped me tremendously, especially in the saddle-bronc riding. I am proud to call them my friends.” Lastly, Wyatt would like to thank each and every supporter of the sport of rodeo. “It’s not as big of a sport as it used to be, and it means a lot to see people in the stands who are there to support the contestants. It’s actually a pretty cool thing to have someone who doesn’t know much about rodeo to come up and ask you about it. It’s my wish that more people will become involved in this great sport.”