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The Shawnee News-Star
  • Nebraska team ropers ready for first IFYR

  • Nebraska team ropers and longtime friends Zach Oestmann and Cody Carlson are excited about competing in their first International Finals Youth Rodeo this week.
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    Nebraska team ropers and longtime friends Zach Oestmann and Cody Carlson are excited about competing in their first International Finals Youth Rodeo this week.
    Oestmann, who will turn 16 on July 30, and Carlson, who is 18, have been team roping partners about six years but are finishing up their stint together this summer. Carlson, who just graduated high school, plans on turning pro this fall or may even head off to college.
    Oestmann, who is the header of the duo, said his grandfather taught him how to rope and it all escalated from there. For Carlson, his dad and uncle were team ropers, so he gets a lot of pointers on being header of the team.
    “We practice a lot — after a while, you learn to read each other,” Carlson said, adding he’s carrying on a family tradition that he really enjoys.
    His partner agrees.
    “It’s not something your parents make you do — it’s something you look forward to coming to,” he said about rodeos.
    As they gear up for a run, they try to just hang out and remain calm until their turn. Carlson will ride his horse, Big John, and Oestmann will be use his horse, Martin, for this week’s competition.
    In addition to rodeo, Oestmann plays basketball at his school, but both say they rope year-round.
    While they are competing this week in team roping, both also are calf ropers and will head off to team rope together next week at the National High Schools finals in Rock Springs, Wyo.
     
     
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