By Martha Michael
With her shiny blonde hair and winning smile, you might not guess that Ann Scott of Canyon Country is a tough and daring cowgirl. While she may be one of the most eye-catching competitors in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA), she’s also one of the fastest.
Last month, Scott was a big winner at the California Circuit Finals Rodeo in Lancaster, earning the title California Barrel Racing Winner of the Year. It qualified her to attend the Ram National Circuit Finals to be held in Kissimmee, Florida in March. “They take the top two contestants in each event from each circuit,” said Scott. “California is its own circuit, because it’s such a big state.”
Scott’s horse, Buzz, also took top honors. He was named California Barrel Racing Horse of the Year.
A Canyon Country resident since the age of three and a graduate of Santa Clarita Christian School, Scott has a great attachment to this town. “It’s far enough out of L.A. where I can have horses and be away from the big city, but close enough to L.A. where I can go to work,” she said.
Scott is a stunt woman for films and television, following in the boots of some of her family members.
“My father, Walter Scott, is a stunt coordinator (for the entertainment industry) who still competes in team ropings. My mother, Valerie, used to compete in barrel racing and is now the head of our horse breeding program. My brother, Wesley, is a stuntman and has competed at rodeos also,” said Ann.
The riding champ started out going to junior rodeos when she was 12. “I’ve competed in California PRCA rodeos since I was 14,” she said. “And this last year, I decided to travel to bigger rodeos outside of California for the first time and ended up ranking 18th in the world.”
Does she have the answer to the age-old question, “Which one makes you fast–the rider or the horse?”
“It’s a combination of both,” Scott said. “You must be able to ride well and also have a horse that can run and turn fast. And to be great at their job your horse must love it!”
As if rounding those barrels at full speed wasn’t challenging enough, Scott claimed that the whole event requires a lot of skill and tenacity.
“My biggest challenge has been training my horse, Buzz,” she said. “I was there when he was born and trained him to run barrels myself. This year was a big learning experience for both myself and my horse. Traveling to rodeos across the country was difficult. It’s a very busy schedule, but an experience that has made me grow in many ways.”
Scott has a strong support system to keep her schedule. Her boyfriend, Brad, is a competitive steer wrestler and helps her drive to many of the rodeos. Scott hopes to qualify for the “super bowl of rodeos” next year: the PRCA finals in Las Vegas, Nevada.
“I’ve only been to watch,” she said. “It’s great. The best in the world compete there. Everywhere you look in Vegas during the rodeo there are cowboys!”
While many of us would never dare to go full speed on horseback, or even ride horses at all, Ann Scott has taken a lot of risks as a cowgirl.
“My job can be scary sometimes. I’ve had a few broken bones, stitches and a lot of bumps and bruises,” described Scott. “I think it was John Wayne that said, ‘Real courage is being scared to death but saddling up anyway.’”