GOLIAD – At one of the few remaining open-air arenas in South Texas, 38 bull riders from around the world were introduced to kick off the Goliad County Area Go Texan Touring Professional Bull Riding competition on Saturday night.

The winner of this year’s competition was 19-year-old Dylan Smith from Southwest Virginia.

Out of a possible 100 points, 50 for the rider and 50 for the bull, Smith scored 89.5.

“It feels good to win, it’s what I came here to do,” Smith said. “I didn’t come here to do anything less than that.”

The Goliad County Area Go Texan members took on the event seven years ago as an annual scholarship fundraiser for the county. This allows students in Goliad County to apply for scholarships through the Houston Area Livestock Show and Rodeo.

Tod Fuller has been an ambassador for the Goliad County Go Texans for three years.

“Really the key to this thing is we’re doing it all for scholarships,” Fuller said. “If it wasn’t for the sponsors and those individuals who gave us the money, then we wouldn’t be giving scholarships.”

Eight to 10 scholarships are awarded each year to students in Goliad County.

“It’s great to live in a county that’s willing to support the youth,” Fuller said. “If it wasn’t for the scholarships we wouldn’t be out here busting and sweating our butts off, it’s all for the kids.”

Wendy Yanta is treasurer of the Goliad County Area Go Texans.

“This brings in a lot of people. Our hotels are full, and I’m sure our businesses got extra business today,” Yanta said. “There’s so much history in Goliad and I think this just adds one more thing for the town.”

Smith has plans to make history as well.

He has been riding since he was 6 years old when he started on sheep then moved up to riding his first bull when he was 12.

Next, Smith is heading to another competition in Houston with hopes of going to Las Vegas in November for the world finals and a goal of winning rookie of the year.

Kendall Warner is a multimedia intern for the Victoria Advocate. She can be reached at kwarner@vicad.com or 361-574-1286 or @kendizzzall on twitter. 

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Multimedia Intern

Kendall M. Warner is a multimedia intern with the Victoria Advocate. She is from Northern Virginia and is a recent graduate of the photojournalism program at Western Kentucky University.

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