Young Guns

Meet the 2023 WCRA Rodeo Carolina DY Showcase Champs: Walker Warkentin and Colt Bass
Get to know the teenagers that won the 2023 WCRA Rodeo Carolina Division Youth Showcase, Walker Warkentin and Colt Bass.
Walker Warkentin turning a steer for Colt Bass to win the 2023 WCRA Rodeo Carolina DY Showcase.
Meet the 2023 WCRA Rodeo Carolina DY Showcase Champs: Walker Warkentin and Colt Bass were 6.02 seconds to win the 2023 WCRA Rodeo Carolina DY Showcase. | Courtesy WCRA

Walker Warkentin, a Calmar, Alberta, native, and Colt Bass, from Statesville, North Carolina, were 6.02 seconds to win the WCRA DY Showcase and $2,000 a man at Rodeo Carolina Oct. 7, 2023.

Warkentin is a 19-year-old sophomore at Cisco College in Texas and also won the DY tie-down roping title. Bass, 17,  is also an all-around hand who competed in the saddle-bronc riding and bull riding, with the bronc riding being his main event.

Taylor Vollin: What was your plan today? Did you know much about your steer?

Walker Warkentin: Just go catch. We were fourth out, so we were right in the middle of the pack, and I thought if we just caught and kind of let everybody else do their deal, then it’d give us a chance. They ran [our steer] on Thursday in the preliminary deal and he was good. He was supposed to be average.

TV: How did you feel about your run?

Colt Bass: It felt pretty good. We left the box and I was just looking at his feet and got in time, and when he turned he was kind of hopping away from it and when he cleaned up I just laid it down and let him have it.

TV: What does it mean to win this today?

WW: A lot. It’s a long drive out here, so it’s nice to win something.

CB: A lot.

TV: Tell me about the horse you rode today.

WW: His name is Big Mac. Jeremy Buhler’s fiancee Katie trained him, and I’ve had him for three years. He’s great; I love him. He’s just big and fast and strong. It’s easy.

CB: I bought him as a late yearling. He’s a 4-year-old now. His name’s 22. He’s a gelding, and I broke him as a 2-year-old. I’ve done everything with him. He went to Nationals, I’ve taken him to a bunch of ropings, but when I’m at home I go and catch cows out in the pasture and stuff. I cowboy, so I use him. I got a couple other ones at the house I use, too.

TV: How did you boys get teamed up?

WW: Honestly, I hadn’t met Colt until about half an hour before the rodeo. I’ve never met him. Blake Walker said that he’d be a good run, so my dad called his parents, and we got ahold of him and he said he’d rope.

CB: I just met [Walker] today, and I’ve asked around about him. They said he is a good run.

TV: Was there extra pressure since you didn’t know each other?

WW: Probably less because he’s pretty easy-going.

CB: It added a little bit, but out of all the people I talked to, they said that he was a pretty good run, so I was excited for it.

TV: How do you like the WCRA DY?

WW: They’re awesome. It gives the guy a chance to come out here. I came out here for the WCRA too, but it gives a person a chance to do some good.

CB: I like them because it gives everybody that’s younger a shot to get their name out there before they have to hit that big deal. So, the people know them a little bit better. They can get to know people, and they can figure out who the big guys are so when they get there, they’re not like, ‘I’m all alone, I don’t know anybody. I’m going to stay over here by myself.’ They can go talk and figure stuff out.

TV: Colt, you were in quite a few events today, how do you keep your mind focused?

CB: Well, I do five events at high school rodeos, so I’m always back and forth. I’m kind of used to it. When I was in junior high I did eight events. High school, for the first two years I did all six, but I sold my bareback riggin and I mean, it’s just a mental game kind of.

TV: What does it mean to compete on such a big stage in your home state?

CB: I like it because it really shows that North Carolina, they’ve actually got some pretty good cowboys coming up that can represent the state. 


Time$Ground $Total $
1WALKER WARKENTIN COLT BASS 6.02$2,000.00 $166.67 $2,166.67 
2KAITLYN TORRES BRYCE EHLINGER 8.27$1,500.00 $166.67 $1,666.67 
3CARSON SONNIER JACOB STANSBURY 12.5$1,000.00 $166.67 $1,166.67 
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