Clay O'Brien Cooper
- Team Roper - Heeler
"I consider Priefert the best on the market."
By the time Clay turned fifteen he was winning consistently and often being turned away from local jackpots because ropers didn't want to compete against him. Getting a driver's license the following year coupled with his consistent winnings enabled Clay to travel and compete more.
The following year Clay made the move to Arizona, to be near his father, and started roping for a living while learning to make it on his own. He was truly living his dream and pursued it with a driving force. He recognized he needed to learn how to handle pressure, the importance of riding better horses and the need to continually improve.
His goal was to win a world championship and the cowboys he roped with all shared the same goal. They gained confidence as they progressed through the amateur rodeos and jackpots. Soon, once again, Clay found himself repeatedly banned from jackpots where ropers did not want to compete against him. This limited his earning potential and resulted in Clay joining the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association in 1981 where he qualified for the National Finals the same year.
Winning his first world title in 1985 was the completion of an important goal and task for Clay. World champions don't receive their gold buckles immediately because the buckles are made with their names on them. When Clay received his buckle, he realized that God had orchestrated this world championship title and with it came a large responsibility. Knowing he did not do it alone and realizing it was for a greater purpose, Clay became determined to be worthy of his status.
Over the years Clay has qualified for 25 National Finals and won seven world titles. In 2007 he became the tenth rodeo competitor to surpass $2 million in career earnings. He is also a member of the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame. Through it all, he has remained committed to be the person God wanted him to be. Through filling that role, he has enjoyed many wonderful experiences and developed lasting relationships. He is constantly amazed at God's work and His blessings. One great lesson Clay shares is that you don't have to be perfect to receive God, just be willing to admit your mistakes.
Priefert is proud to count Clay as one of our outstanding endorsees.