By: Jolee Jordan
What’s an average week like for teenager Jada Trosper?
“Rodeo, rodeo, rodeo, school,” laughed Trosper.
The Ponder, Texas cowgirl burst onto the national rodeo scene last November when she shocked a stacked field of veteran barrel racers by finishing fourth in the inaugural Women’s Rodeo World Championship (WRWC) hosted by the World Champions Rodeo Alliance (WCRA) and Professional Bull Riders (PBR) in Fort Worth and Arlington, Texas.
“That was our first big show together,” Trosper said of her equine partner, Sun N Sevens, aka Seven. “It was such a cool, incredible experience.”
“I still watch my runs and and tell him, ‘you took me there, that was you bud.”
Since walking away with more than $10,000 at last year’s WRWC, Trosper and Seven have only strengthened their partnership. Trosper wrapped up her sophomore year of high school rodeo with one of the toughest titles to earn: Texas State Champion Barrel Racer.
After earning her regional title in a squeaker, by just a single point, Trosper advanced to the state finals in June. Knowing it would be a tough competition, Trosper was determined to enjoy the competition and do her best.
After running into penalties in the pole bending, things didn’t start out just right on her first round in the barrels either. “We had kind of a wonky first barrel.”
Trosper hatched a new game plan for the second round, one that worked to perfection. She and Seven gapped the competition by two tenths of a second in the second go to take a big lead into the finals.
“I’ve been working on not beating myself mentally,” she noted, adding she’s had great mentors to help out. “I told myself, I just need to be clean and I’m in. It’s my first ever chance at Nationals.”
“I was in the right mindset and he was feeling great, he knew this was his moment,” Trosper said. She and Seven posted the fastest run of the Texas High School Rodeo Finals on that run to easily clinch the average win.
“Bring on the waterworks,” Trosper laughed of the emotions of the week. “I was let down from the poles but we overcame.”
As for Seven, the little horse with the big personality, he seems to always know what he’s done.
“He knew what he just did, his head was bobbing,” she joked. “He knows if messes up too; he looks so disappointed. But no matter what, he gets a treat.”
While her first trip to Nationals—and Seven’s first time in an outdoor arena—didn’t quite go to plan, Trosper took it all in with her usual sunny outlook.
The teen took pride in improving from the first round to the second and soaked up the entire experience.
“But the friendships, the connections made . . . it was a great time and I had a blast.”
Trosper is a busy cowgirl. Along with her hectic rodeo schedule, she is a Varsity cheerleader, class President, is active in FFA and recently joined the Spanish Club. Amazingly, this is a schedule she called, “divvied down” so that she could ride her young horses.
Oh, and she’s also an Honor Roll student who’s taking dual credit classes.
In addition to youth rodeo success, Trosper is becoming a regular at WCRA events thanks to nominating most of the big events in which she competes for the WCRA’s Leaderboards.
Back in April, she competed in Rodeo Corpus Christi.
“I had my sixteenth birthday while I was down there,” Trosper noted but added that mom, Melinda, still isn’t letting her pull the trailer.
Trosper competed as part of WCRA’s Youth Division (DY), which offered a $21,000 DY incentive along with the chance to run at the $545,000 payout at the south Texas event. Trosper advanced out of the gritty, tough qualifying rounds against the pros, claiming the DY incentive bonus and moving into the performance rounds at the WCRA Major.
While she won’t be back at the WRWC in 2021, she’s still nominating events for WCRA’s next major, the Cowtown Christmas Championship Rodeo to be held in Fort Worth December 15-18.
“I have a conflict and can’t compete this year [at the WRWC],” she said. “But we’re aiming for the Fort Worth one. We were nominating in the beginning and then I forgot for about a month and a half and when the leaderboards came out I went, ‘uh oh!’”
Now back on track with nominating her events, Trosper is well on her way to another WCRA Major.
“Once we went to our first WCRA, it was such a good event and worth it to go,” she said. “The staff are all so sweet and they’re very supportive of the youth; they want to see the youth succeed and there are more opportunities than ever before for us.”
The Cowtown Christmas Championship Rodeo will pay out more than $360,000; nominations close November 28 and the top 24 on the Leaderboard in all events will qualify. The 2021 WRWC again offers a payout of $750,000 in team roping, barrel racing and breakaway roping; nominations are open until October 3. All women and girls aged 13 years and above are eligible to compete at the WRWC.