Cowboy Grille ... Stockton Graves

PSN: What has been the key to your success the past couple years?
SG: I have gotten a lot more consistent with my scoring. Everything is going my way, and I'm definitely more consistent every week trying to win.
PSN: How did it feel when you walked into the Thomas and Mack Center for the first time last year?
SG: It was pretty neat. It was a dream come true, as I had always wanted to compete there. I had watched it on television many times and always said I wouldn't go until I made it. It was hard to believe that I had actually made it, and it was overwhelming.
PSN: What made you become interested in rodeo?
SG: My dad was a bulldogger, and a lot of my family was into rodeo. I have been around it my entire life.
PSN: According to your bio, it says you do a little roping. How much roping do you do?
SG: I pretty much just rope calves in the circuit. I like to rope calves but don't get a chance too often because my focus is more on bulldogging. Bulldogging is my first event, and I don't want to mess with that. I did quite a bit of roping in college, but now I spend my time on steer wrestling.
PSN: How many hours a day do you practice?
SG: We don't get much chance to practice in the summertime, as we are always at a rodeo. We mainly practice in the winter and fall when we get a little time off. During that time, we try to run steers as often as we can just to stay sharp.
PSN: What is the best thing about being a professional cowboy?
SG: I don't like to work too much so that is a good thing. We get to live our own lives and do what we want to, so that is the best thing about it. We can enter here or we can enter there, it is up to us. Just having the freedom to do what we want.
PSN: What is the worst?
SG: Being away from home so much and traveling all the time. I think last year I was away from home 290-plus days.
PSN: Say you are competing at a rodeo and the arena is really muddy. When you get back to your trailer, do you just throw your clothes in the trash, or do you try to wash the mud out?

SG: We usually wash them out. We hang them on the fence and spray them off with a hose. We will then put them in a separate dirty clothes bag and some lucky cleaners will get to do the rest. If we had to wash them ourselves we would just throw them away.
PSN: What do you enjoy doing away from the arena?
SG: I hunt a lot … raccoon and coyote. We also play a lot of (Sony) PlayStation. I got a buddy who travels with me, Roger Anderson, so we play quite a bit of PlayStation and sleep a lot.
PSN: Do you get pretty competitive with the PlayStation?
SG: We have a football game we play that gets pretty heated. We actually can't play it anymore because it gets a little too heated. We enjoy it and we buy new games and try to beat the whole game.
PSN: What other sports do you enjoy watching or participating in?
SG: I enjoy watching college football, and I am a big OU fan. I get pretty stoked when it comes college football season. As for participating in, I used to wrestle and play football growing up.
PSN: What is your favorite sports moment of all time?
SG: When OU won the national championship in 2000, that was pretty cool.
PSN: If you could have front row tickets to any sporting event, what would it be?
SG: I would probably go to an OU football game.
PSN: Favorite vacation spot?
SG: I don't go on many vacations. When I get home, I just want to stay home. So, I guess rodeo is my vacation and my job.
PSN: Favorite food?
SG: Fajitas. There is a place in Ponca City (Okla.) called, El Patio, that my fiancé and I go eat at when I am home. They serve some pretty good ones.
PSN: Who would you say is the most likeable steer wrestler?
SG: I would have to go with the legend, Roy Duvall. He has always been and still is my rodeo idol. He is a great guy. Everybody likes him, so I would have to go with him.
PSN: What steer wrestler would you not want to wrestle against in the Olympics?
SG: Rod Lyman or any of those bigger guys.
PSN: Do you and your fiancé have a date picked out, and how did you get engaged?
SG: We don't have a date yet. I asked her (Crissi Loch) in Las Vegas at the Finals last year. We went on a Gondola ride at the Venetian and that is where I asked her.

The Cowboy Grille appears in each issue of the ProRodeo Sports News which is published bi-weekly by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. For more information or to subscribe, contact them by clicking here.