(Cushing, Okla.) Bronc riding just seems to come naturally to 16-year-old Jordan Root. The Bristow teen didn't even start riding horses until his "Papaw" Rick Root gave him his first horse as an 8th grade graduation present in 2010. But since then, not only has Jordan participated in barrel racing, flags and poles in the Beggs Round Up Club, he has recently developed a love for ranch bronc riding.
"And he likes 'em wild," Papaw said. "The second time out he rode a bronc that's now known as one of the meanest broncs out there. All Jordan's life he's been called 'No Fear' - so it's not really a surprise he would like it."
Jordan said he got into bronc riding after his best friend Eric Snodgrass told him about an opening in a bronce riding event. "He told me about it and so I just did it," he said, grinning. "But I'd tell anyone who wants to do this to get on a practice horse a couple of times first - I didn't." Between the adrenaline and the balance and confidence he's gained in wrestling, he has done a pretty good job of staying on a bucking bronc in the short time he's been competing. His first competition was in April 2012 and he's been able to average 5 - 6 seconds each ride.
"Of course 8 seconds is my goal - I've only done that once. Then there was that one time I only lasted 2 seconds," he laughed.
Eight seconds will no doubt become more and more important to Jordan as he continues on his ultimate quest of becoming a bull rider. "I've wanted to do that all my life. I watched that movie (8 Seconds) all the time when I was a little kid."
Papaw admits it is sometimes difficult for him and Jordan's grandmother Linda to watch. "I worry about the horse's hooves when he comes off the horse," he said. "They've gotten awfully close to his head. But we support him in what he does."
Jordan is the son of Ricky Root and has a sister Kylea and brother Clay. He attends Bristow High School where he will return as a junior in the fall. He and his horse Black Beauty will compete at Cavalcade in Pawhuska and later at the Ranch Rodeo in Texas.