The Western Horseman Sunshine Classic awards big prizes to team ropers.
Tammy Ellerman and Phil Luman captured the inaugural Western Horseman Sunshine Classic, held February 11, 2016, at Dynamite Arena in Cave Creek, Arizona. The team ropers won $20,000 ($10,000 each), plus trophy saddles made by Martin Saddlery.
Once they secured the championship, Ellerman and Luman competed against each other to determine who won a Bloomer two-horse trailer. Luman edged Ellerman in the rope-off.
“I’ve been wanting to come to Arizona [to rope] for the past few winters, and this is the first trip I got to make,” says Luman, a heeler and retired school teacher from Montana. “My partner, Tammy Ellerman, is a heck of a header.”
The Western Horseman Sunshine Classic, organized by Dynamite Arena and magazine staff, drew more than 100 entries. It awarded prizes for a variety of accomplishments, including fastest go-round times, top heel horse and head horse, and top 10 placings. Awards included Gist belt buckles, Yeti coolers, Professionals Choice saddle pads and Western Horseman prints.