Meeks among local athletes competing in The American |

Meeks among local athletes competing in The American

Nicole Michaels
for Tri-State Livestock News
South Dakota bronc rider Jeremy Meeks will compete Sunday at The American Rodeo. Photo courtesy Jeremy Meeks

Bronc rider Jeremy Meeks of Scenic, South Dakota didn’t wear his favorite hat for three years after his wife Jamie threw it on the bed.

“That’s supposed to be bad luck,” says Meeks, who competes Sunday at the American. “I didn’t put it on until last fall at the Indian Finals Rodeo.”

It could be said that the black felt Star of the West is now his lucky hat, since it was the IFR event that qualified Meeks for the world’s richest rodeo.

A saddle bronc rider, Meeks, 34, has a chance to win a million dollars in his event.

Meeks said he’ll retire if he wins.

“I was always told you go out when you’re on top and I can’t imagine being more on top than that.”

Raised around rodeo in a family of stock contractors, Meeks had the family broncs to practice on and says he’d like to mentor future talent at the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation where he grew up.

He still travels to about 20 rodeos a year, and credits his wife, a barrel racer, for keeping everything going while he is on the road.

The couple owns a cattle ranch together, and they’ve been calving all week.

“I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for her, I know that,” he says of his wife.

The American Rodeo will be broadcast on RFD-TV Sunday from Arlington, Texas.

For more on the American Rodeo qualifiers see p. D5.

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