Ropers Shine at Western Horseman Event

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The Western Horseman Sunshine Classic awards big prizes to team ropers.
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Team ropers compete in the Western Horseman Sunshine Classic in Scottsdale, Arizona.

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.”

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Phil Luman shows off his new trailer. He is flanked by Randy Bloomer (left) of Bloomer Trailers and Butch Morgan, Western Horseman Ambassador at Large.

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.

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Tammy Ellerman (left) and Phil Luman won the Western Horseman Sunshine Classic.
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Jett Sharp and Joyce Sewell work in the announcer’s booth.
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California horseman Les Vogt visits with friends before the event begins.
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Dynamite Arena staff member Hemi Cast helps pen a roper’s steer.
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Owners of the top heel horse and top head horse received a Gist buckle.

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