A look back at the 1967 National Finals Rodeo in Oklahoma City.

By DICK SPENCER III, originally published in the February 1968 issue

Anybody could have told you the formula for staging the best, wildest, fastest and most colorful rodeo in the world—just assemble the top 15 cowboys and cowgirls and horses in one place, and bring in the rankest and fastest stock from all the proven rodeo strings, and put on a big rodeo. Since 1959, that is just what has been happening each year at the National Finals Rodeo. There is no place you can go to see a better rodeo, and the 1967 National Finals Rodeo in Oklahoma City proved it again in December.

From the opening grand entry in the Fairgrounds Arena on December 1 to the final Awards Banquet held at the National Cowboy Hall of Fame on December 9 it was go-go-go, and great all the way.

Larry Mahan stepping off of bucking horse at 1967 National Finals Rodeo
Larry Mahan used champion bucking horse Descent just like he owned him. He hooked the ol’ pony R.C.A. style until the tooter (signal horn), and then he fanned with his hat and stepped off, old-time cowboy style. Photo by Ferrell
Walt Linderman bulldogging a steer at the 1967 National Finals Rodeo
Walt Linderman, Belfry, Mont., winning the Finals ‘dogging. Walt is not only an outstanding bulldogger, he’s also a top hand with ‘dogging horses. His hazing horse is Doug, and his ‘dogging horse is Scott. This is the third year in a row that the Finals bulldogging has been won with Scott. Photo by Ferrell
Freckles Brown riding infamous bull Tornado at the 1967 National Finals Rodeo
Tornado, owned by Jim Shoulders, has been ironing out bull riders for years. But Freckles Brown pulled his rope down on him in the first go at Oklahoma City, and old Tornado “got rode,” as the above photo shows. With typical Brown no-brag, Freckles said, “He (Tornado) was overdue.” Photo by Ferrell
winners of the 1967 National Finals Rodeo standing together
National Finals Rodeo winners, 1967 (from left): Larry Mahan, saddle bronc; Glen Franklin, calf roping; Freckles Brown, bull riding; Frances Smith, barrel racing; Clyde Vamvoras, bareback bronc; Ace Berry-Bucky Bradford, team roping; Walt Linderman, bulldogging. Photo by Bryant

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