There have been few cowboys who have had more success on a national and circuit level in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association than Matt Shiozawa from Chubbock, Idaho.
Matt has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (NFR) and the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo (RNCFR) nine times. He and his wife, Ali, and daughters, Stella, Lorelei and Ivory, made the trip to Florida where Matt left the RNCFR as the 2017 champion. That was his fourth RNCFR championship.
He earned $15,541 in Kissimmee which counted towards the world standings for the first time. That was huge for him as he and Ali had already made plans to go to Mexico to celebrate their 10th anniversary. He knew he was going to miss rodeo’s in Logandale, Nevada and Red Bluff, California, so the money this time of year would help him in his quest to qualify for his 10th NFR.
When the young couple got married, they were busy with his rodeo schedule and trying to start their lives together, so they didn’t really have a honeymoon. Their trip to Mexico was more than just a celebration of their 10 years, it was a well-deserved break from rodeo and a time for them to confirm their commitment to each other and their girls.
Matt’s rodeo pursuits started when he was just a kid learning horsemanship and roping skills. In fact, his first pony came with a rope. His time horseback was spent on a potato farm near Pocatello, Idaho until Matt was in high school when they moved to Logandale, Nevada.
In high school, he played football and basketball. As soon as he was done with practice, he would come home and work at roping. He won National High School Rodeo Association titles in tie-down roping, team roping and earned the all-around title.
He joined the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) in 1999 and started school at Vernon (Texas) Regional College. He won the WNFR championship in 2011, has finished as the reserve world champion twice and is closing in on $2 million in career earnings. No matter how successful he is in the arena, his greatest satisfaction comes outside of the arena with his family.
Favorite movie: The Bourne Movies with Matt Damon – All of those are among my favorites – they created a legacy.
Favorite current TV show: Longmire – Western – It’s well written with plots and subplots. I like the guy and how he’s challenged. He has a moral compass but is flexible with it to get the results that he wants. He’s (Robert Taylor) a great actor and fits that role perfectly.
Dogs or cats: I was a dog person forever, but we got a new barn cat the other day from Ali’s brother. He’s been the best darn cat ever, can fend for himself for a weekend if we’re gone. The girls named him Motor because he purrs so much.
Favorite dessert: Banana cream pie – day in and day out banana cream pie is hard to beat.
Favorite card or board game: We play War with the girls – good way for them to learn their numbers.
Favorite sport, other than rodeo: That has changed a lot. I was big time into basketball and football. Tennis right now because I’m starting to play.
If you weren’t in rodeo, what would you be doing: Something in real estate. Anywhere from construction to development. We are already venturing into the market and I’m learning a lot.
Best childhood memory: When I was young my dad farmed and I loved harvesting. I got to ride in the tractor quite a bit and that was the deal.
Favorite thing you like about Las Vegas: The food. So many good restaurants and opportunities to try new cuisine and it doesn’t have to be expensive. You can get something amazing on a budget.
What do you like to do in your spare time: At home spare time is always spent with the family. On the road, I’m starting to golf a little. I’m usually up for a game of basketball. I like being active.
My role model is: I have a lot, and I’ve taken pieces out of the lives of each one of them.
Best travel partner: I’ve had quite a few. Sometimes you travel with someone for convenience and logistics. Rodeo is a circle of friends and you try to figure out what’s best for everyone. You need common goals and need to be with a good group of guys that you enjoy being with.
Music: I’m sure enough a jambalaya of music. I listen to a lot of music on YouTube and it will randomly pick for you. I listen to Sirius news quite bit. I like a lot of the classic stuff that was really popular when I was young – Cody Jenks, Red Dirt.
Best quality your wife has: She is a really good person and is definitely my best friend.
Best thing about being a dad: The attention that you get from your little ones.
If you could live anywhere where would it be: I haven’t been there but they say Hawaii is pretty awesome. There’s more ranches than you would think and I hear the weather is always good.
Facebook or Twitter – Twitter for sure – It seems like a good way to get a lot of information fast.