Carrie E. Dean and Dual Playgun, and Travis Roberson and Lefty Lea
by Alicia HarrisThe American Quarter Horse Journal
Travis Roberson of Gainesville, Texas, and Carrie Dean of Brandon, Mississippi, had already had a good afternoon on August 10. After earning the reserve world champion title in team penning, they were the last to go in the ranch sorting finals at the 2013 Built Ford Tough Youth World Championship Show.
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The horses were on edge, and the cattle were restless. When the flag went up, the race was on. After a couple of near misses and one crowd-pleasing consecutive pair, the team was on a roll. As seconds ticked away on the clock, they both zeroed in on the only numbered cow left.
The cow shot into the other pen, and the crowd erupted in cheers. Travis and Carrie were both grinning from ear to ear, and Travis was pumping his fist. They had won the ranch sorting championship.
“You saw me at the end of the ride,” Travis said. “I was pretty excited. I get pretty excited. You know, it’s a world title.”
Carrie thought it was more of a relief than anything.
“We didn’t blow out. We almost did.”
Carrie was not only on the champion team with Travis, but she was also on the reserve champion team with Corey Free from Port Allen, Louisiana.
“It was great,” Carrie said. “It’s a feeling you can’t even describe.”
Travis started riding with Carrie three years ago, and in his first year at the youth world, the two won the team penning championship and were reserve in ranch sorting. Last year, their team didn’t have such good luck. However, Carrie was on the 2012 champion ranch sorting team at the Ford Youth World.
Carrie has actually had quite a bit of success with Dual Playgun, a horse she affectionately calls her “Old Faithful.” He has carried her to many championship titles over the past several years.
“I’ve had him for a long time,” Carrie said. “I’ve won a lot on him. He’s my Old Faithful, so it’s great. His name is 'Moose.' A long time ago, it was winter and my dad had his gloves and put them on his ears. He looked like a Moose.”
Travis has been with his mare, Lefty Lea, for about four years. This was his first year to bring her to the Ford Youth World, and he said it will be her last. They are retiring her from the show ring.
“It was her last ride,” Travis said. “She’s done after this. I just thought I would send her out in a good way.”
Both Travis and Carrie still have a couple of years left to show in the youth division.
“It was really fun,” Travis said. “I hope we do it next year.”