New Mexico Native World Champion Bull Rider Returns to the Arena for the 6th Annual Tuff Hedeman Championship Challenge

1996 World Champion bull rider Owen Washburn, Lordsburg, New Mexico, will join the newest addition to the gold buckle club, the number one bull rider in the world, Sage Kimzey, inside the arena at the 6th Annual Hobbs Tuff Hedeman Championship Bull Riding presented by Legendary Services, LLC.  

Washburn, who competed for 21 years as a professional cowboy will be behind the chutes in Hobbs as he brings his trio of world class bucking bulls to compete in the CBR Million Dollar Bull Team Challenge on Saturday night at the Lea County Expo Center.  

“I am excited to be back with the bulls,” said Washburn. “I breed and raise performance bulls and hope to have a little luck this week in Hobbs.” The forty two year old Washburn was the first stock contractor to win the CBR Bull Team Challenge World Finals in 2011 and collect $100,000 bonus earnings at the CBR World Finals held in conjunction with Cheyenne Frontier Days in July.  

Washburn’s livestock trailer will include three young, but proven buckers. -1 Carrizo, who has only been ridden once in 13 attempts. Second on Washburn’s string is #118 Smoked Out, a bull who has heard the 8 second whistle only twice in his young career, and his third entry is a young bull named #94 Rubber Band who remained unridden in 18 attempts in 2014.

Hedeman’s main event will be showcasing the CBR and PRCA World Champion and number one bull rider in the world, Sage Steele Kimzey of Strong City, Oklahoma, pitted against some of the greatest bull riders and bull talent in the game.  One of those hot on his heels young guns is eighteen-year-old Wyatt Rogers, Rose, Oklahoma, who gathered enough points last weekend in the CBR’s Jackson, Tennessee event to move into the number one position in the current CBR World Standings. Rogers, who turned professional last October, won $43,000 in Mercedes, Texas, the single largest event purse in CBR history.

Hedeman invites the public to come out and join him and the championship bull riders on Friday, January 23rd at Pacific Rim Restaurant from 4 pm to 6:30 pm and at a reception at the Western Heritage Museum Complex and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame. 

“Organizing the Hobbs, New Mexico bull riding is like coming home”, said the 4 time World Champion bull rider who competed in New Mexico junior rodeo associations as well as high school rodeo representing New Mexico.  “I always look forward to this event, the fans, the sponsors and the whole Lea County community gets behind it and it’s a great way to give back to the people of New Mexico who have supported me during my career”, said Hedeman, the Ambassador of Championship Bull Riding. 

This year’s event is the fifth stop on the Mahindra Championship Bull Riding’s (CBR) Road to Cheyenne Tour which pits the industry’s elite riders against the best bulls in a three round tournament style action. The bull riding will be held at the Lea County Event Center. Doors open at 6:00 and action gets underway at 7:30 pm. The Prestige Oilfield Services Stick-bull riding competition for the kids under 7 will be held at 6:00 prior to the event with the finals during intermission. The young stick-bull riders will show us their best imitation of their favorite bull rider as they buck out of miniature chutes with the winner taking home the grand prize, a Tuff Hedeman Championship Belt Buckle. Enter the stick-bull by emailing for more information, limited contestants being accepted.

There are no guarantees in bull riding; the only way for cowboys to earn a paycheck is to ride better than the rest of the 24-man field.  The field of competition which starts with 24 riders, then 12 and finally 4 in the Shootout where they will battle for the lion’s share of $30,000 in prize money. The night’s excitement will culminate as the final four bull riders will get a third opportunity to ride in a winner take all ending. The format appeals to new spectators and established fans alike because riders can challenge as many as three bulls in one performance. 

In addition to lucrative prize money, bull riders accumulate points which qualify them for the World Finals, part of the legendary Cheyenne Frontier Days celebration held Wyoming next July. At the end of the World Finals, the contestant who has the most points will be crowned the World Champion and receive a $100,000 bonus. The national tour includes stops from Jackson, Tenn., to Las Vegas, Nev., east to west and from Huron, S.D., to Del Rio, Texas, north to south. 

The Hobbs event will also feature the “other side of the ride”, CBR’s Million Dollar Bull Team Challenge. Bull owners from all around the country will bring three bulls that are featured during the first two rounds of competition. The bulls are competing for points based on their performance in the arena. Additionally, the time the bull rider stays on is added to the bull’s score. At the end of the night, the owner with the three highest-scoring bulls will receive $20,000.  

CBR has become known for their action-packed performances that keep fans on the edge of their seats. That is largely due to the influence of four-time world champion bull rider Tuff Hedeman who coordinates every element and attends to the smallest details. From having great bulls matched up with super star riders, to upbeat music and enthusiastic fans there is something for everyone at the Hobbs Tuff Hedeman Championship Bull Riding. 

Advance tickets are available at Lea County Events Center 5101 N. Lovington, Hwy, Hobbs, or 800-735-1288. Prices start at $15 with a variety of options available.