Rodeo athletes announce the creation of new association | TSLN.com

Rodeo athletes announce the creation of new association

Jade Corkill, Tuff Cooper, Clay Tryan, Bobby Mote, Fred Whitfield, Charmayne James, Tony Garritano, Trevor Brazile, Patrick Smith. Photo courtesy ERA

BOERNE, TX (February 16, 2015) -­The Elite Rodeo Association (ERA), an innovative new rodeo corporation created and owned by the top rodeo athletes in the world, is proud to announce its formation. "We believe that rodeo needed an elite tour comprised of only the world's best rodeo competitors and livestock," said Tony Garritano, CEO and President of the ERA. "Due to its business model, the ERA is the only rodeo organization that can truly guarantee appearances of the top talent in professional rodeo. Being owned by the contestants, they are guaranteeing themselves." Just as other professional sports industries have elite levels of competition for their top athletes, the ERA will do the same for the top professional rodeo athletes by creating a tour that will showcase the best talent in rodeo. The ERA plans to work in cooperation with existing rodeo venues and sports arenas across North America to create an exciting and sought after tour. In addition, ERA is focused on the future generations of top rodeo athletes with a mission of ensuring the integrity of the sport of rodeo and providing additional opportunities for professional rodeo cowboys, cowgirls and industry partners for years to come.

The ERA is owned by the top 55 rodeo athletes, 42 of which are World Champion Rodeo Cowboys & Cowgirls. While the current ownership includes existing top competitors, the progressive model allows for aspiring elite rodeo athletes to participate and earn ownership in the ERA. "By introducing a unique concept like the ERA, it is our hope to increase the awareness of the sport of rodeo on a national stage" says 21-­time World Champion Cowboy and ERA Board Member, Trevor Brazile. "Enhancing the sport of professional rodeo and building something greater for the future generations of rodeo cowboys and cowgirls is the goal of the ERA. We look forward to working with the entire rodeo industry." Governed by a seven-­member board that will consist of three roughstock representatives, three timed-event representatives and one administrative official, the athlete-­owned organization will showcase the best cowboys and cowgirls, whose eligibility to compete will be determined by the ERA qualification system. In 2016, the ERA will produce a 15-­event regular-­season tour, all broadcast on national network television, culminating with a 5-­day World Championship event. "We are excited about building and releasing our 2016 season and plan to increase the number of tour stops in the years to come. The ERA has its own set of regulations, allowing us to provide very unique opportunities for the entire rodeo industry," states Garritano. Exciting announcements about the 2016 tour will be coming soon. More information will be released through erarodeo.com and their Facebook page, ERA Rodeo. F

–Elite Rodeo Association