This issue marks three years as The Team Roping Journal. This same team (seriously, we’re all still on staff after all this!) created this beast from the ashes of Spin To Win Rodeo and Super Looper with a little dose of American Cowboy in just three weeks back in July 2017, and me with a 10-month old daughter I’d left for the first time.
Three years later, I don’t think any of us could have imagined we’d be here. I doubt we’d have guessed we’d be in the throes of a global pandemic that shook our economy, our industry and our values to the core. But we wouldn’t have dreamed, either, that we’d be blasting out issues breaking the scales each month, when magazines across the globe are closing their doors and stopping the presses. We wouldn’t have guessed we’d have a podcast with over half-a-million listens in “The Score,” a platform that’s opened conversations across the industry about subjects that matter most to ropers. And I certainly wouldn’t have predicted the following we’ve built across our website—through so many partners in the industry—that tracks everything from the Resistol Rookie race to the ProRodeo circuit standings and the PRCA’s world-standing race. Plus, this month, you’ll not want to miss our USTRC National Finals of Team Roping presented by Cinch coverage on teamropingjournal.com, a place where so much great team roping content lives.
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Inside this issue, you’ll find stories that reflect our mission—that is, to expand and energize the team roping industry by telling dynamic stories of the people, horses and events that inspire the sport. G.R. Schiavino’s feature on Gary Gist tells the story behind team roping’s buckle king (page 60), while I got to track down some of the behind-the-scenes guys putting the miles on the best young horses in the business (“The Foundation,” page 70). Meanwhile, Julie Mankin got the inside scoop on the best offices in the roping business and just how they work so dang well (“A Rock-Solid Office,” page 64).
And as this issue hits your mailbox, our newest venture—The Breakaway Roping Journal—launches online at breakawayropingjournal.com. Our team is unified by our passion for helping the Western industry grow, and we’re truly geared up about serving the ladies (and the moms, dads and kids) of the breakaway roping industry in addition to our long-standing team roping efforts. So many roping dads read this magazine, and I hope you’ll take an interest in The Breakaway Roping Journal as a place to help your daughters reach their goals, too.