66th Annual ABC Rodeo Kicks Off - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

4/3/08

66th Annual ABC Rodeo Kicks Off

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Hundreds wrangled up their families and headed over to the City Bank Coliseum Thursday night. That's where the 66th annual ABC Rodeo kicked off at 7:30 p.m. Thursday evening.

Aside from sporting cowboy hats and boots - attendees wore plenty of pink. That's because Thursday night's theme was tough enough to wear pink. A portion of the rodeo's proceeds will go to the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

After 10 years of barrel racing nerves are a thing of the past for Hayley Payne.

Last year alone she competed in more than 50 rodeos across the U.S. But that mind set definitely changes when Hayley competes in her hometown.

"I was born and raised here. All my friends are going to be here. It's a big deal to enter the Lubbock rodeo," says Payne.

The Cooper High School and Texas Tech graduate says there's really only one way to prepare for her event.

"Just put a mental video in of your runs. Visualize your run and stay calm," says Payne.

And some might say Hayley can't go wrong with a horse named Miracle.

Inside the coliseum ABC Rodeo Chairman Ray Short is taking a second to catch a breath.

"We began bringing dirt in here last Saturday and we haven't slowed down since," says Short.

Cowboy or not, Short guarantees anyone who comes out to the rodeo will have a great time. From bull riding to barrel racing to team roping - there's something for everyone.

Short says you won't want to miss free style bull fighting - a new addition to the ABC Rodeo.

"You've seen the clowns that help protect the cowboy during bull riding - these guys will get out and actually be one on one with Mexican fighting bulls," says Shorts.

Hayley says for now she will stick with barrel racing. And though she competed Thursday night, she urges everyone to come out to the ABC Rodeo.

Proceeds from the ABC Rodeo will also go to the Lubbock Boys and Girls Clubs.

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