GARDEN CITY, Texas – A Garden City, Texas teen will be traveling to Las Vegas, Nevada to compete in the 2019 Junior World Finals Rodeo December 5-14.
Jordan Driver, 17, is one of 15 females out of a total of 160 contestants that qualified to compete in both the pole bending and barrel racing events.
Driver is a Junior at Garden City High School where she also plays basketball and was chosen as a member of the Concho Valley All-Team Basketball group. Driver is also a two-time state bronze medalist in the 1A 100-meter girls hurdles.
Our Senora Scott got to correspond with Driver. Their interview is below.
SS: What made you want to get into rodeo?
JD: My parents rodeoed their whole life and at a young age, going on the road with them and experiencing what it was all about, I knew I wanted to be just like them.
SS: How long have you been competing?
JD: I have been riding horses since I was two but I have only competed since I was five.
SS: What are your horses’ names?
JD: I have multiple competition horses I compete on but the main ones are Player, Fireball, Price, Java, Honey B, Merada, and Snip.
SS: How do you balance your school work and activities with traveling and competing at rodeos?
JD: I am very blessed to be able to go to a school that supports what I do and works with me. Being a junior in high school, classes become harder and more complicated especially toward the end of the semesters. I have wonderful teachers who take the time to help me stay caught up on the work.
SS: How did you feel when you found out you were going to Vegas for the Junior World Finals?
JD: The feeling was amazing! I have competed in Vegas years before an all I remember is that rush you feel when you ride in the arena. So, I am very excited to go back and compete again.
SS: What does it mean to you to be representing not only the United States but Texas and Garden City?
JD: You have a sense of responsibility wherever you go if you compete under the state of Texas, but I am so excited to represent my small hometown.
SS: What has been your favorite moment in your rodeo career so far?
JD: Within my rodeo career, I have had many special memories, but one out scores the rest. This memories is when I won the short-go of the THSRA State Finals in the breakaway. With that win, I qualified for the High School National Finals Rodeo in Rock Springs, WY.
SS: How do you hope to use your platform?
JD: Being a junior in high school, I am involved in many extracurricular activities. I am involved in our FFA program, NHS, and Student Council. I am also a starting point guard for our varsity basketball team and I am a 2X state bronze medalist in the 100m hurdles. But my main focus has always been rodeo. Being a high school student who rodeos, it does not always get the recognition like sports and clubs do. I want to bring light to the high school rodeo athletes and let everyone know we are just the same as sports athletes.
SS: What do you hope you get out of this experience?
JD: I hope to come out of this Vegas experience with more knowledge of bigger competition and how to work and maintain being more competitive and focus on my main goals in the future.
SS: What are your plans for the future?
JD: In my future, I definitely have sights set on the WNFR. I want to win the Rookie of the Year and compete with the best. But I definitely want to go to college and receive a degree in Equine Sciences and Physical Therapy and then have a job working on rehabbing equine athletes.
SS: What message do you have for others who want to get started in rodeo or are chasing their dreams right now?
JD: Your goals and dreams never can be too high if you truly want it. The extra 10 minutes you spend working makes a huge impact in your path success. Sometimes you have to win the big battles to take the smallest step closer. But trust me, if you truly are happy in what you do, nothing is too big to accomplish.
Photos and videos courtesy of Jennifer Driver and their respective companies: 321 Action Video, Jennings Photography.