Blazin Ta Fame and Vickie Carter

By Ann Bleiker

It was with heavy hearts that 2015 WPRA reserve Rookie of the Year Vickie Carter and the Hendrix family had to say goodbye to Blazin Ta Fame, who gave everyone so much in 2015. BlazeMan, an 11-year old gelding by Blazin Jetolena out of Princess Dasher, a Dash Ta Fame mare ended his battle with colic complications on Easter Sunday, March 27, 2016.

"On Easter Sunday, BlazeMan ends his long battle with colic complications and joins his angel in the sky, Rachel Hendrix," noted Clay Hendrix, Rachel's father and owner, with wife Annette, of BlazeMan, on his Facebook page. "It's only fitting that today was the day. We are at the Gardnerville High School Rodeo on Easter Sunday. When Rachel made this run in Gardnerville, we knew Blaze was for real. It was a great ride and with broken hearts we end this part of the journey. Thank you to Vickie Carter for your time and dedication."

Carter, a veteran in the game and a horse trainer who has been in the business of selling good horses, rode in 2015 for Rachel Hendrix, BlazeMan’s owner that died in January 2014 of carbon monoxide poisoning at age 18.

Rachel along with her parents had dreamed of BlazeMan taking her to the Wrangler NFR, so following her untimely death, the parents asked Carter to make a run at the NFR on him. So Carter bought her WPRA card and hit the road. The duo collected wins from Yuma, Ariz., to Jerome, Idaho, to Bremerton, Wash., en route to a berth in the Wrangler NFR and a shot at the WPRA Rookie of the year title. Carter wore a Ridin for Rach patch on all her shirts throughout the year and was looking forward to running down the alley at the Thomas and Mack on BlazeMan. Unfortunately, right before Thanksgiving the gelding underwent emergency colic surgery and would be sidelined for rodeo's "Super Bowl."

Carter would borrow a horse for the 10 days of the NFR and finish 14th in the world with $83,768 and second in the Rookie of the Year Race.

The WPRA sends its condolences to all those affected by the loss.