Temecula saddle maker Dale Chavez donated a headstall to the Cowboy Reunion auction which sold for $150, Dec. 16.
“He’s been a good supporter of ours, and these are first class,” auctioneer Jesse Franks said.
Former National Finals Rodeo bareback rider Rusty Riddle had the winning bid for the headstall at the live auction which was part of the Dec. 15-16 Cowboy Reunion at the Orleans Hotel in Las Vegas.
Riddle expects the headstall he purchased at the auction to be used for events where the horses are on display rather than for general riding activities.
“You’ve got to have your everyday stuff and your Sunday clothes. Your horses are the same way,” he said.
A headstall is part of a bridle or halter which fits around a horse’s head to control a horse being ridden.
“We’ll take them and put them to use. We won’t hang them up,” Riddle said. “We have lots of horses. We’ll use them.”
Riddle, who is originally from the Texas town of Weatherford, now lives in Vernon, Texas. He began his bareback riding career in 1968 and obtained his Rodeo Cowboys Association, which is now the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, card in 1970. He qualified for the National Finals Rodeo in eight consecutive years from 1972 through 1979, and from 1972 through 1975, he finished second in the final bareback riding world standings behind Joe Alexander. After breaking his leg in 1979, he retired from competing at the age of 31.
The Cowboy Reunion is part of National Finals Rodeo Week and includes a live auction and a silent auction, which complement registration fees in raising money for the Justin Cowboy Crisis Fund, the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame in Colorado Springs and the National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum in Oklahoma City, which administers both the National Cowboy Hall of Fame and the Rodeo Historical Society.
Chavez has become a regular donor for the auction.
“He’s just always so gracious about helping us with our fundraising,” Cowboy Reunion organizer Liz Kesler, said.