Creedence sees it's time for a revival of family name
HER mum handed her the reins to follow a rich family history with horses and now Tyalgum rider Creedence Donoghue is committed to treading a track of her own, beginning at Cabarita'a Bull and Bronc Spectacular this week.
Ms Donoghue's mum, Robyn 'Rowdy” Donoghue, was a multiple National Rodeo Association barrel racer champion and set standards for riding and horsemanship that remain revered in rodeo circles today.
As Rowdy's own mum did with her when she encouraged her daughter to form a bond with horses, the former champion performed a similar service for Creedence, who now has become a fine rider in her own right.
Creedence acknowledges it is an honour to follow her mother in the sport, but said she has plans to step out of the shadows and steal the limelight at the Cabarita Pony Club's rodeo this Friday.
"I try to learn from her but we are a little different as riders,” she said.
"But it all goes that quick, you don't really think when you're competing; you just ride like hell.”
Creedence recently did well while still a junior, picking up junior aggregate at the National Rodeo Association.
This time she enters the open ranks but will have a quality horse underneath - a gelding bred from one which shared in much of Rowdy's success.
"You have to be pretty close with your horse,” Creedence said.
"It's a pretty scary thing for them to do, until they are used to it, and he's still learning.
"I just really enjoy the racing, and I want to follow in Mum's footsteps. When horses are in your blood they stay there, like if you haven't been riding for a few weeks, you just have to do it.”
Watching on this Friday will be Rowdy, who admits she was always more comfortable in control.
"It's nerve-racking,” she said. "I'm not riding and I get anxious for her.
"But she's born and bred, she's third generation; my mother used to be a lady buck-jump rider back in 1940s and then I've won three or four saddles in my heyday.”
The Donoghues will join a cast of competitors at the event, which serves as a fundraiser for Cabarita Pony Club, across bull riding and bronco categories.