HUGHENDEN cowboy Gavin Fry is travelling from north west Queensland to the Riverina in NSW on Saturday as he aims to win the 2020 rookie saddle bronc title in the Australian Professional Rodeo Association.
Excellent entries have been received for the Wagga Wagga Rodeo on Saturday with action in rough stock events and roping.
The Wagga Wagga Rodeo starts at 4pm Saturday at Equex Centre Wagga with tickets available at the gate.
The saddle bronc ride at Wagga Wagga has attracted 15 entries, including Fry and APRA title winner Brad Pierce from Tooma, NSW.
NSW rider Cody Angland will be one of the cowboys to beat along with Swan Hill (Victoria) cowboy Heath Chalmers.
There are 41 nominations in breakaway roping at Wagga Wagga.
Tania and Vicki Schiller will be two of the locals in the roping and both are multiple title winners in the APRA.
Brigalow cowgirl Jane Ryan leads the standings in the APRA and will fly south to compete at Wagga Wagga.
Fry leads the rookie saddle bronc standings and is fourth in open standings.
He manages the family cattle property, Marathon South Station, which comprises 46,000 acres and a herd of 2500 cattle. While mustering is more about bikes and helicopters at present, he had the chance down the years to ride young horses on the property.
"I just love riding bucking horses, I grew up mustering on horses," he said.
After riding bulls as a teenager, Fry didn't compete in saddle bronc until the age of 25.
Now at 34, he is planning to travel a lot more this year and will fly to Canberra and then hire a car to Wagga Wagga for Saturday's rodeo.
"I just missed out on the top 15 and national finals last year so plan to contest more rodeos this season," he said.
While he lives in the Hughenden (Flinders) local government area, Fry is closer to Richmond than Hughenden and is hoping to win at Richmond this year after a third in 2019.
He plans two trips to Victoria in the next two months, one for the long weekend rodeo series in March and then at Easter.
"I am not a fan of the travel but you have to do it to succeed in the sport," he said.
Every cowboy keen to qualify for the national finals is hoping to draw the best horse.
"I want to draw Cheyenne Top Girl from the Garry McPhee string," he said.
"If you ride time on Top Girl, you are likely to be in the prize money."