For avid rodeo fan and former PRCA contestant, Arlen Driggers of Baker City, Oregon, the 9th or 10th time playing Pro Fantasy Rodeo was a charm when he learned on the tenth night of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo that he had won the 2018 Ram Truck as the winner of the 15th year that Pro Fantasy Rodeo has offered as PRCA’s official fantasy game. Driggers, a formidable steer wrestler in college rodeo followed by a PRCA career, competed extensively in the late 1970s and early 1980s, winning Pendleton and placing 2nd at Houston. He ended up 21st in the race to qualify at the WNFR in 1984, but that didn’t dampen his love for the sport and has since avidly followed contestant standings, particularly those from the northwest.
This devotion to the sport combined with his first-hand experience undoubtedly contributed to his success in picking the winning team, named “Tirerodeo,” (probably thus named with a nod to his 20-year career in the tire business with a prestigious tire company). Drigger’s team amassed an amazing $1,128,769 over the 10-day competition held at Thomas and Mack in Las Vegas, Nev., December 6-15, 2018.
When asked about his strategy for picking this particular team, Driggers said he figured he had to pretty much pick contestants ranked toward the middle with the salary cap of $500,000 that Pro Fantasy Rodeo allows. He picked someone he knew was strong in choosing saddle bronc rider CoBurn Bradshaw ($157,384.62) “…and he’s from up here,” then went with Richie Champion ($113,525.64) in the bareback riding. He had been watching Trey Yates end with a hot season, so picked him as the team roping heeler along with his header, Aaron Tsinigine and their winnings ended at $118,461.62 each. Picking Tyler Waguespack ($170,429.48) was easy since “he’s the best bull dogger going down the road” and besides “he was a steal money-wise.” Driggers also felt Amberleigh Moore was a bargain and she, too, was from the northwest. So now, according to Driggers, “I was down to the tie down roper, and Ryan Jarrett ($80,525.64) fit my budget, so I picked him.” “That left bull riding,” said Driggers, and his good friend, Jim Brown’s daughter Allie had just graduated from Montana State University, and her advice was to pick Chase Doughtery ($222,749.99) who then ended up being the highest money winner on Drigger’s team. Concluded Driggers, “You should say that Allie was the reason my team won.”
Since Driggers has many friends in the area who play Pro Fantasy Rodeo, he stated that in 2019 he wanted to start a Buckle League. This is another facet of the game offered by PFR where players can create their own league to win a custom Montana Silversmiths Silver Buckle. The league must contain 10 members, enter the league code that the originator receives from PFR, and pay $20 when entering. As Driggers said, “It will be just one more way to up the excitement of watching the WNFR.”
As Driggers entered his team on the PFR website, he also chose several prize packages which he won, and it included the “Rodeo for Free” package. For the second year, Pro Fantasy Rodeo, the PRCA and the San Antonio Rodeo teamed up to offer this prize where the winner can name a current PRCA Member to receive $10,000 in Entry Fees at PRCA Rodeos plus a $5,000 fuel card. Driggers chose his friend Jim Brown’s son, Jesse Brown, the 2017 PRCA Rookie of the Year in steer wrestling and an up and coming star in the ranks. Brown, 25, has already hit the road hard in the steer wrestling competition for the 2019 PRCA season entering such significant rodeos as Odessa and Fort Worth, Texas, with qualification for the WNFR in sight after finishing 33rd in the 2018 season. Stated Driggers, “I can’t imagine how exciting that is going to be for him – to have his entry fees paid just has to help him be successful!”
When questioned about the 2018 Ram 3500 Crew Cab with Dual Rear Wheels that he won, Driggers said that the first thing he is going to do is take his best friend Jim Brown, father of Jesse and Allie, fly to Texas to get the truck and go to the Fort Worth Rodeo to watch Jesse compete. “We’ll swing through certain states and do some visiting with friends on the way home, making it a great road trip,” he said. “I can’t think of a better way to make use of that new baby,” he quipped. Driggers also won the Coors Prize Challenge through Pro Fantasy Rodeo which awards him 4 tickets each night during the 2019 Wrangler National Finals. He remarked, “Wouldn’t it be great if Jesse qualifies for the WNFR and we can use these tickets to watch him?’
As a Pro Fantasy Rodeo devotee, Driggers has played the game for the past several years after reading about it on the PRCA website (prorodeo.com). “It’s lots of fun.” he said, “You can enter more than one team or just one—you can spend a little or a lot to win. I can tell you that around here we’ve all been so excited about winning, and we encourage everyone to get involved. It’s a Blast!” Driggers concluded with a sincere thank you to the Pro Fantasy Rodeo staff and team members for making the game possible and for the chance to win such nice prizes.
Pro Fantasy Rodeo began in 2003 and has provided fun and excitement to rodeo fans for over 15 years and really proud of the impact of the contest creating rodeo fans. There are over 240,000 active fans on the PFR facebook. With the completion of the 2018 Wrangler Nationals Rodeo Finals, Pro Fantasy Rodeo has paid out over 2 million dollars in cash and prizes throughout its 15-year history.
In addition, PFR offers a Charity League where rodeo celebrities created their own league and competed against each other for their charity. The winner, Flint Rasmussen, had almost $5,000 donated to his designated charity PBR Rider’s Relief Fund by Pro Fantasy Rodeo. Plus, the winner earned the right to design a tattoo for the loser of the league, Steve Kenyon or he can pay his charity $1,000. Pro Fantasy Rodeo will match his $1,000 or give $2,000 to the loser’s charity if he agrees to get the tattoo. To date, only Justin Rumford has agreed to proudly wear the tattoo that Flint Rasmussen designed for him in 2014.
Visit the PFR site at www.profantasyrodeo.com to read about 2018 results, read articles about previous winners and learn how to enter the next game.