BY JANINE ADAMS
For the Record Gazette
Rodeo is alive and kicking in Cherry Valley, and there is a soaring star: Gracie-Beth Sutton.
Gracie-Beth Sutton a young rising rodeo star from Cherry Valley.
Gracie will be competing in the National Junior High Finals Rodeo at the South Dakota State Fair on June 23, starting at 9 a.m. in Huron, S.D.
It is important to note here that only four junior high school students of the state of California qualified for the rodeo championship.
Our own Gracie-Beth is officially recognized to be one of those competitors.
This is not the first go-around for this young rising star.
She competed in the same event in 2018.
She says “that she was excited to be in the event at her age as a seventh-grader from good old Cherry Valley.”
Her attitude has been, “Whatever happens, happens. I am here, so excited to be here.”
Gracie-Beth was ranked 10th in the world at the 2018 National Junior High Finals Rodeo.
Cherry Valley offers a natural setting where children can develop rodeo skills.
Our young rising star ventured to master breakaway roping, rather than the more popular barrel racing.
Gracie will be competing in the breakaway category at the world championship for junior high school students.
Another facet of Gracie’s success is her 40 year-old horse, Jenny.
That is right — “Jenny from the block” — Cherry Valley’s block, that is.
Together they are a team. Gracie is thankful for Jenny’s support.
Jenny was not her original name: her name was Fancy.
Gracie’s brother was inspired to change her name, inspired after having seen the movie “Forrest Gump,” where the main character’s love interest’s name is Jenny.
The main ingredient to Gracie’s rise in the rodeo arena is her supportive, loving and encouraging family.
Winning championships are about the whole team: Gracie-Beth’s family might be behind the scenes; however, they contribute a lot of hard work as well, helping with financing Jenny’s lodging, arranging for travel, and helping with Jenny’s general welfare.
Assistance comes from her parents, Amanda and Charley Sutton, as well as Gracie-Beth’s brothers Wyatt and Riley Sutton.
Gracie competes in the California Junior Rodeo Association.
She is the 2018 All-Around Junior Cowgirl and Junior Breakaway Champion.
In the California Junior High School Rodeo Division District 8, she is the 2019 Reserve All-Around Cowgirl, Breakaway Roping champion, Goat Tying Champion and Ribbon Roping Champion.
She was also the Champion Breakaway Roper at the Banning Stagecoach Days Rodeo in 2018.
Just recently Gracie-Beth qualified to compete in the California Junior High School Division Finals a couple of weeks ago.
The conclusion seems promising: Gracie-Beth Sutton has the drive and ambition and a proven track record for success, and will represent Cherry Valley well at nationals.