Mattie Colvard

Mattie Colvard competes at the 2017 International Finals Youth Rodeo.

SHAWNEE, Okla. — Mattie and Eli Colvard of Crumpler are competing in the 26th annual International Finals Youth Rodeo July 8-13 at the Heart of Oklahoma Exposition Center in Shawnee, Okla. They are participating in the world’s richest youth rodeo, hoping to win their share of more than $250,000 in prize money and championship saddles and buckles.

The Colvards will join more than 850 of the top high school rodeo athletes from around the world for the 2018 IFYR. Mattie is vying for prizes in breakaway roping. Eli is competing for prizes in tie-down roping and team roping.

Contestants will compete in 10 events running simultaneously in three arenas throughout the week. Events include barrel racing, pole bending, breakaway roping, goat tying, team roping, tie-down roping, steer wrestling, bull riding, saddle bronc riding and bareback riding. The IFYR consists of two long go-rounds and a short go. All contestants compete once in each of the long go-rounds. The top 15 averages in each event will compete in the short go finals on Friday.

“The International Finals Youth Rodeo attracts the best youth rodeo athletes in the world,” said Chris Dunlap, assistant director of the Heart of Oklahoma Exposition Center and International Finals Youth Rodeo. “The IFYR was developed to provide a professional level competition to high school athletes and now, more than two decades later, the IFYR is where any hopeful rodeo champion wants to be and be seen.”

The International Finals Youth Rodeo, held annually since 1993, is a 501 ©3 non-profit organization that presents top high school athletes with a professional rodeo.

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