At the Pendleton Roundup of 1951, there was no bull riding and no clown, but there were lots of fast horse races and picturesque Indian events, plus harum scarum stage coach and chuck wagon races the like of which one can view nowhere else this side of the Canadian line.
By JERRY ARMSTRONG, originally published in the December 1951 issue of Western Horseman
Choate Webster was the fair-haired boy and all around champion of this year’s Pendleton Roundup. This was the husky young Oklahoma cowboy’s third consecutive winning of the all around and the famed Sam Jackson trophy. So this time Choate was awarded the sterling silver trophy for keeps. The Sam Jackson was put up in 19 30, replacing the Roosevelt trophy which Bob Crosby had taken home at the conclusion of the 1928 Roundup. In the years between 1930 and 1948, four cowboys had chalked up double wins of the all around title and trophy, but it required three wins to gain permanent possession. Then Choate rode into the picture and he did it up fine, being the high point contestant in the Pendleton arena for 1949, ’50, and ’51. Here is one of the few non rough stock riders whose work in the arena consistently brought down the house. It was apparent from the start of the Roundup that the hopes of the spectators were on Choate ; he was their chosen champion and all the way they were pulling for him to win. When he did, they almost tore down the stands.
Choate’s steer roping was especially sharp, consistent and ever on the spectacular side. On the opening day, he set a new Pendleton steer roping record of 17 flat. Previous Pendleton record was Ike Rude’s 1 7 .2, racked up by “the professor” back in 1931.