We're officially in the countdown to this weekend's inaugural Elite Rodeo Association World Championship at the American Airlines Center, where 120 best-of-the-best athletes will take center stage and compete for one of the largest payouts in rodeo history over a 3-day competition. Leading the charge this weekend is 11-year-old Chayni Chamberlain from Stephenville, Texas, the youngest athlete on this weekend's round up. Read on to get to know Chayni a little better and make sure to buy your tickets to this weekend's must-see event!
She's an animal lover (and it runs in the family.)
It's a full house at the Chamberlain residence! Besides Chayni's horse Flo Jo, the family also has four dogs, 4 cats and a goat named Chief. Additionally, Chayni has her heart set on helping animals in her future with plans to one day become a vet.
Her relationship with Flo Jo is definitely a special one. "He's been in the family for a long time, and as long as he's by my side on competition day, I'm not nervous."
A typical day in Chayni's life is jam packed.
On school days, Chayni's days start around 8:30 am with classes until the afternoon and then time on the field. On days when school isn't first priority, Chayni focuses on feeding, grooming, saddling and bathing the horses before getting in a little bit of reading time, and then it's straight to practice after lunch.
"My favorite part of the day is anytime I can spend with my horses," said Chayni. "I also love visiting my grandmother in West Texas, and I really like basketball so I love my weekends at home so I can get in some practice time."
Her family is showing up in a big way.
When you walk into the arena this weekend, look for a big crowd near the front cheering on Chayni. Nearly a dozen of Chayni's closest family and friends will be making the trip to Dallas to watch her compete.
"Me and my mom will be staying in the trailer to be close to the horses," said Chayni. "The rest of my family will meet us at the arena on the big day!"
She's ready to show Dallas the rodeo life.
The day of the competition starts at Fair Park, where the livestock are housed. Chayni will saddle up Flo Jo there before making the short trip the American Airlines Center. Once there, Chayni will stay with Flo Jo until it's her turn on the floor and get to show the crowd her skills.
"Come ready to see a great show, great competition and really sweet cowboys and cowgirls," said Chayni. "It's sort of a cowboy party!"