By Jessica Crabtree
An increased heart rate, high blood pressure, shallow breathing, an increase in body temperature, and sweating cause the brain to redirect energy and blood from the internal organs to the muscle. The body is now ready to flee or fight. That order of events describes the process of adrenaline. Is it the rush, the thrill, excitement or even fear of danger that lures people to it and keeps them coming back again?
People seek different forms of adrenaline in various ways: climbing massive mountains, racing dirt bikes, driving race cars, sky-diving, bungee jumping, running with the bulls in Spain, or even swimming with sharks. What if your adrenaline addiction was reoccurring, dangerous and, yet, controversial?
Twenty-one-year-old Jane Revercomb looks like your typical young lady: bright-eyed, pleasant disposition, petite, and beautiful. No one would know by looking, that she is an adrenaline junky, and her choice is riding bucking horses. Shocking at first, however, the Virginia native has been riding since March of 2017. Seeming unconventional, women bronc riding is not new but actually a thing of the past. Early on in the 20th century, there were numerous established women rough stock riders. Perhaps the most notable female bronc rider is Bonnie McCarroll. McCarroll was a champion bronc rider with a career spanning 14 years.
Though some preceded her, McCarroll marked the height and ending of women bronc riding after her death in Oregon after riding at the Pendleton Round-up in 1929. Thereafter, the sport of women bronc riding was outlawed. However, today there is a new movement of vivacious women on the fore-front of reviving the sport through exhibitions and associations. Revercomb is among those ladies.
Revercomb was born and raised in the Virginia city of Roanoke with three other siblings. The family had one horse between them that they boarded until Revercomb’s father purchased a farm outside of town. After moving the horse, the obvious next step was getting him a companion. “We found this horse on Craigslist for free,” Revercomb laughed. They knew the horse was rideable, but had a less than desirable disposition.
Growing more and more interested in horses, Revercomb searched for outlets, finding them in her local 4-H and FFA chapter. Entering at the age of 14, Revercomb and her new-found equine companion entered barrel racing. “We didn’t know his age, he had no papers and after some thought, we knew he was a rescue horse that needed to be re-homed,” Revercomb explained. Once getting him in the arena, Revercomb found he was gate sour, but clearly had training on the barrel pattern. Soon the duo began to mesh, gaining momentum and experience, “He ended up being a great barrel horse. If you could get him in there [the arena], you were going to win.”
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