Jesse Clark went from one Clovis to the other last weekend. Clark, 21, is ranked fifth in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association in tie-down roping. The 2010 graduate of Dora High School made a nearly-19-hour drive from Clovis, Calif., where he roped Friday, to Clovis, N.M., for the Joe’s Boot Shop Roping event.
You made the Clovis-to-Clovis (California to New Mexico) trip. What makes you do 19 hours on the road like that?
Because this is great roping. It’s one of the best events we have. Coli (Hunt of Joe’s Boot Shop) is good to me, and I told him I’d be here. I like it because it’s close to home, and it’s great roping. They do an awesome job with it.
How do you keep yourself awake on a ride of that length?
Music, and sometimes we’ll put one of our portable DVD players on the dash and watch it. Yeah, it is dangerous, but it helps you stay awake. There’s not really a favorite movie; I’m not picky.
What’s your favorite memory in the events center?
The year I won open roping here; I want to say it was 2011.
Who is your favorite rodeoer?
It would be Sylvester Mayfield (of Clovis). He’s been here and he’s helped me since I was young. He taught me everything, really. He mostly taught me how to win. I’ve been around him since I was 7 years old.
You’re fifth in the PRCA in tie-down roping. What do you attribute to your success?
I got a good start at San Antonio and it hasn’t slowed down since. When it’s clicking, you want to go to one every day. You don’t want to go home.
How do you wind down when you don’t have a roping event you can attend?
You either rope, practice more, or you play golf. I’m terrible at golf, but I have a blast doing it. Probably right now, Guymon (Okla.) is my favorite place to golf. I haven’t golfed much.
Tell us about your partner. You only brought one horse with you.
He’s named Birdman; Sylvester owns him. He fits me good. We click. He runs fast, he stops hard and he works the rope a lot.
What’s your favorite place to rope?
It all blends in. Besides home, I like to rope at Sylvester’s house.
— compiled by staff writer Kevin Wilson