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21 August, 2021

No bull, Ky shows true Mackay spirit

KY Hamilton, from Mackay and now in the US, has been riding the hell out of bucking bulls for the past nine years.

By Jacob Cumner

He started at the tender age of 12. Ky was inspired by his father Micheal Hamilton who used to ride bulls, saddle broncs and bareback horses. Ky would watch old videos of his father’s rides, then started watching Professional Bull Riders (PBR) back when it was on TV and decided to give it a go. 

His father took him to the Great Western Hotel in Rockhampton for a practice night and he was hooked! He started off with poddy calf riding till he was old enough to progress to steers, then-junior bulls, second division bulls, rookie bulls and finally the open bulls section. 

Ky and his father travelled most of Central QLD so the young fella could compete, and also some trips up north. His longest trip was to Tamworth in 2014 for Ky to have a shot at getting a place in the Australian High School Rodeo team that would go to Iowa in 2015 to compete   at the National High School Rodeo Finals. 

He placed fourth at Tamworth which was enough for him to make the team and so his first trip to ride in the US was in 2015. At the age of 18, Ky became a member of the Australian PBR and also represented his country in the Global Cup that was held in Sydney in 2018. 

When asked if his family worry about him in what is a potentially dangerous sport, Ky responded with: “Yes, because they know injuries can be severe or potentially fatal. 

“However, they also extremely happy for me and beyond proud that I am living the life I dreamed for myself since I started.” Now Ky’s ambition has taken him to the US to take on the world championships.

He has already competed in events such as at the end of 2018 in the College Rodeo – mostly the West Texas region. In 2020 he placed fourth in the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo held in Texas for Bull Riding after 10 days of competition. This year he had a huge win at Cheyenne Frontier Days in Wyoming – ‘The Daddy of Em All’. 

Ky became the Bull Riding Champion there recently, on August 1. He rode Evil Intentions for 89 points, the highest score of the comp this year.

 He finished ahead of some tough competition in the top three riders in World standings. Ky may go on to be only the second Aussie ever to win Cheyenne. This competition has been going for 125 years and is heralded as the biggest rodeo in the US.

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