When Dakota Eldridge left Las Vegas last December, he was the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (NFR) champion and the reserve world champion. Not bad for his third consecutive trip to Las Vegas to compete at rodeo’s Super Bowl.
The Nevada native was born and raised in Elko and is also a talented roper. He won the all-around and steer wrestling rookie of the year awards in 2012. The very next year he qualified for the NFR in 15th place. In 2014, he rose from ninth to fifth in the world standings.
Last year, his race for the world title started in 13th place and rose to second place by winning $144,115 in Las Vegas. He was less than $30,000 away from the world title. This year has been a greatl year for the four-year member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. He will enter the NFR in the highest place of his career and has his eyes set on the gold buckle.
Much of Dakota’s success has come aboard a 17- year-old sorrel gelding that he calls Rusty. Rusty was raised by Dakota’s grandfather, trained by his dad in the heading then Dakota turned him into a steer wrestling horse in high school.
As this cowboy is always working to better himself and has consistently climbed his way up the steer wrestling ladder, he is expected to win a gold buckle and would be the first born-and-raised Nevadan to do so. The last Nevada resident to win a steer wrestling world title was Dave Campbell from Las Vegas who won it in 1946.
Dakota does everything he can to be outdoors. He loves to hunt and whenever he gets a chance will go snowmobiling, skiing or snowboarding. His competitive nature and talent saw him winning the slalom race at the Cowboy Downhill at Steamboat Springs, Colo., in 2012. Continue reading Dakota Eldridge