Dave Appleton, an elite bareback and saddle bronc rider from Queensland, Australia, describes his life as the perfect example of divine intervention.

Dave Appleton, an elite bareback and saddle bronc rider from Australia, describes his life as the perfect example of divine intervention.
Appleton competing at the National Finals Rodeo in 1988. Courtesy of Dave Appleton

In 1980, 20-year-old Appleton moved to the United States, attended Western Texas College and qualified for his first National Finals Rodeo in 1982. Throughout his career, he qualified for the NFR 11 times and became the first Australian-born cowboy to win a Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association world championship with the all-around title in 1988. Now, in addition to working in oil and gas, speaking and commentating, and serving on multiple boards and committees, “The Lone Roo” has been inducted into numerous halls of fame.

Cowboy Traits

Honest. Loyal. Fearless. Selfless.

Definition of “Cowboy”

“A cowboy comes in many shapes and sizes and from many different backgrounds. I guess the key question is, ‘Are you talking rodeo or ranch cowboy?’ Initially, I think a lot of us came from ranching backgrounds, but a lot of rodeo cowboys today don’t. Today, a cowboy can be so much more specialized. The core values that I learned from rodeoing have never changed, and they’re traits that every cowboy embodies. I always give 110% and will do whatever it takes to help my workers be successful, much like I helped traveling partners and other cowboys.”

Dave Appleton, an elite bareback and saddle bronc rider from Australia, describes his life as the perfect example of divine intervention.
Appleton competing at the California Rodeo Salinas. Courtesy of Dave Appleton

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