Saddle bronc rider Tyrell J. Smith retires
COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Saddle bronc rider Tyrell J. Smith is ready to move on to the next chapter of his life.
Smith, 32, who joined the PRCA in 2006 as a bull rider and saddle bronc rider and made his lone appearance at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in 2012, is at peace with his decision.
“In roughstock, all those kids are getting younger, and there a lot of them who ride really good and are coming up,” said Smith, who competed in only saddle bronc riding from 2007. “I put 13 years in just rodeoing hard and I put a lot of stuff on the backburner. I figured it was time to be at home more.”
Smith and his wife, Janelle, live in Sand Coulee, Mont., outside Great Falls. In retirement, Tyrell is headed down a new career path. Janelle, meanwhile, plans on barrel racing.
“I’m going into law enforcement,” said Smith, who earned $497,134 in ProRodeo. “I’m headed to the police academy in April. I’m really excited. It is one of those deals where once I get through the academy I will find out where I fit the best. Who knows? It may be with the motor carrier services, it may be with the highway patrol or the deputy sheriff. I know it will be some form of law enforcement.”
The life of full-time rodeo is something Smith will never forget.
“It is a whole different world,” he said. “It is something that very few people get to experience, and I’ve been blessed to do it for a living for a long time. I made countless relationships with all sorts of guys and got to rub shoulders with world champions and call them my friends. It is something I will pack with me for a long time. Going to the NFR in 2012 was cool, but probably the highlight for me was getting to watch my traveling partner Chase Brooks go to his first NFR (in 2018). I’ve been heavily into putting (rodeo) schools on and teaching kids and do what I can to mentor them. Chase was the first kid I mentored that made the Finals. I’m still going to stay involved with rodeo. My wife is going to barrel race, and here at our place we are going to build a facility to put rodeo camps on.”
In 2012, Smith finished 11th in the world standings with $82,874. He won Round 8 at the Wrangler NFR and placed in three other rounds. He also won the average at the 2015 RAM Montana Circuit Finals Rodeo.