Mike Outhier, four-time International Finals Youth Rodeo All Around Cowboy (1993—96), is back at the IFYR with his daughter, Madison. Mike was inducted into the IFYR Hall of Fame in 2008, and this year he’s not only helping his daughter, but he’s helping behind the bucking chutes.
“I help a couple kids that I am helping out throughout the year in Texas,” said the 40-year-old cowboy that competed in all three rough stock events as well as the calf roping. “It’s great to be back– the IFYR was the biggest rodeo I’d ever been to my freshman year of high school. It’s a prestigious event and to win it was great.”
Mike competed from the age of 7 and got on a bronc just last year. Mike went to the International Finals Rodeo, winning the All-Around in 1995, 1996 and 1997. He won the IFR bronc riding in 1997 and made the IFR in all three rough stock events as well as the calf roping. In 1995, Mike won all three titles. He made the National Finals Rodeo four years in the saddle bronc as well.
Mike was raised in Weatherford and now lives in Utopia, Texas, where he raises and trains colts for his in-laws, Lou and Wanda Waters quarter horse operation – LA Waters Quarter Horses. He learned how to ride from his dad, Milburn Outhier, who trained the horse that Mike’s daughter is competing on. Madi brought four horses to IFYR, and her pole horse was ridden all four years by both of her dad’s younger sisters at the IFYR at least 10 years ago. The 22-year-old is still running as he did years ago. Two of the horses they brought were raised and trained by her dad.
Madi came to her first IFYR when her dad was inducted.
“I was a baby – but I came back last year with my dad’s mom to just watch and see the arena,” said Madi. “I was excited to come this year. I’m entered in barrel racing, pole bending, goat tying and breakaway roping. I think it’s awesome - I get to meet so many new people, especially at a rodeo like this. I love to travel with my friends at a young age. Traveling with your family keeps you close to them.”
She has a younger brother, Ace, 10, who would rather fish and play basketball than rodeo.
Her mother, Kristy, the highest rated professional woman polo player in America, passed that passion along to her daughter.
“For polo, you ride an English saddle, running full speed, making contact with people, so it really helps with balance and horsemanship,” said the straight-A student. Madi loves math the best in school. “It comes easily to me, my grandpa is very good at math, and it got passed down.”
She learned rodeo from her dad.
“He’s really taught me how to be a humble winner and never take winning for granted. Just because you have a winning day doesn’t mean you always will. He’s been my only mentor in breakaway, and I’ve had a bunch of success in that, and I owe all of that to him.”
Last year she won the Junior NFR in Vegas in the breakaway, also the Cody O’hl 15 and under and the Joe Beaver.
“I definitely thank my mom and dad – anywhere I want to go, they take me. Rodeo is a great family sport, we travel together and are together all summer long. A lot of families don’t have that opportunity – we’re on the road trying to keep getting better.”