The Best of Arizona: Rodeo champions

2011-10-30T00:00:00Z The Best of Arizona: Rodeo champions Arizona Daily Star
October 30, 2011 12:00 am

Ty Murray

"The King of the Cowboys" was born in Phoenix in 1969. Winner of nine world rodeo championships, he began by riding calves at the age of 2. Inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in 2000. He rode bareback broncs, saddle broncs and bulls.

Everett Bowman

Born in 1899, the Hillside, Ariz., resident won 10 world championships in nine years. He became the first elected president of the Cowboy's Turtle Association (forerunner of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association) and served from 1936 to '45.

Jake Barnes & Clay O'Brien Cooper

Barnes, of Scottsdale, and Cooper, of Gilbert, combined for a then-record seven world team roping championships. While Barnes, now 52, never wanted to do anything but rope, Cooper, 49, was a child actor. His first movie was "The Cowboys," starring John Wayne.

Sherry Cervi

The Marana native became the first barrel racer to amass more than $2 million in winnings. She is a three-time world barrel racing champion and noted horse trainer.

Charles Sampson

This Casa Grande bull rider became the first African American to win a world championship in professional rodeo, in 1982. After a 16-year career known as much for devastating injuries as for championships, he was inducted into the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in 1996.

- Selected by Gary Williams, general manager, the Tucson Rodeo

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