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Cowboy Diaries: Luke Branquinho -- World Champion from the Left Coast

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True cowboys are hard to find, but not at the Houston Rodeo. Life on the road leads them here this time every year for the biggest rodeo in the world, where they'll ride and wrangle livestock for cash and glory. Each day, Hair Balls will spotlight one person with enough dirt on his boots to call himself a cowboy -- and mean it.

Name: Luke Branquinho Age: 31 Hometown: Los Alamos, California Event: Steer Wrestling

I've been to Rodeo Houston every year since 2000, which was my rookie year. I didn't do good last night (Sunday). I hope to do better tonight (Monday).

I started steer wrestling when I was 11. My older brothers started doing it, so I just followed from there and it just took off. I grew up roping on a ranch, and rodeoing was a way of life and steer wrestling was kind of my thing.

My favorite part about rodeoing is the fans. It's fun to get to meet them and it's fun to meet the other competitors. It's not like a typical sport where it's you versus a competitor. Everybody pulls and cheers for each other and tries to help each other win.

When I'm not rodeoing, I'm usually home with the kids. I have two little boys who will be four and two. I also like hunting and other outdoors stuff.

If I wasn't rodeoing, I'd probably be working with cattle and the equipment on a ranch.


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