Savage shows off winning skills to local family

Written by Casey Kellas, The Observer June 08, 2012 01:04 pm

UNION — A cowboy with ties to Cove came out on top at the third annual Ed Miller Memorial Xtreme Bull Riding Thursday night in Union.

Clayton Savage of Cheyenne, Wyo., won the opening round with a ride of 84 before going for 82 points in the short round to finish with a two-head score of 166 points. 

Savage is the third different winner in the three years of the event.

“It’s great. I’ve been coming here for a few years and having some good luck but never won it,” Savage said. “But I showed up (Thursday) wanting to win, and I won. I’m glad to do it.” 

Savage was just one of three riders to successfully ride two bulls. 

Nile Lebaron of Hamilton, Texas, finished with a two-head score of 160 and won the short round with his 85-point ride on “Hot Chocolate.”

Travis Atkinson of Lehi, Utah, started off his night with a ride of 79 then posted an 82 as the first rider in the short round.

His aggregate score of 161 looked like it was going to hold up until it came time for Savage to ride. Savage admitted he didn’t know much about the bull he drew, but that didn’t matter at the end of the day.

“He didn’t even have a name. I knew he’s a calf, he’s young. So I figured he’d be unpredictable, so I just stuck my chest out and just kept trying,” Savage said.

Although he calls Texas home, competing in Union is a bit of a home-field advantage for Savage. He has plenty of family that live just down the road in Cove.

“Yeah my grandpa, I got an aunt and uncle, my sister and cousins,” Savage said of family who reside in Cove. 

“Everybody was here cheering for me and that helps a bunch.”

Savage was able to outperform some of the PRCA’s best bull riders.