Inducted in 2003
“I’ve always been able to ride pretty much any kind of horse the same,” observed World Bareback Champion Clint Corey in a 2002 interview. “As long as you can do that, it’s going to be like any sport; if you can be consistent at it, you’re going to be at the top, no matter what.”
It is that very “consistency” that catapulted Corey to the top of his profession and induction into the Ellensburg Rodeo Hall of Fame. Most local rodeo experts agree Corey is the greatest bareback bronc rider to have ever competed in the Ellensburg Rodeo.
Clint Corey was born November 29, 1961, to Nick and Coleta Corey, in Bremerton, Washington. By age 6, Clint was riding calves and steers; by age 11 he was aboard bareback broncs. He soon won his first junior rodeo: “I kinda liked it right then,” he remembers. “Bareback seemed to come more naturally than any of the other events.” World Champion Joe Alexander was young Clint Corey’s hero, and he patterned his career and style after that rodeo great.
Corey, 5’ 6” 140 lbs., turned pro in 1985 and amazed the rodeo world by placing second in the World in bareback bronc riding; this garnered him the 1985 Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) “Rookie of the Year” Award. During a remarkable eighteen-year professional career that is only now beginning to wind down, Corey worked himself constantly into the money, with lifetime earnings of nearly $2,000,000. He qualified for the National Finals Rodeo a staggering 17 times. He won the Columbia River Circuit average 8 times (1989-95, ’97, ’01) and was Columbia River Circuit Champion for twelve consecutive years (1989-2000). Corey placed fourth in the World Bareback Bronc Riding three times (’88, ’93, ’98), third in the World five times (’89, ’92, ’97, ’99, ’01), and second in the World on four occasions (’85-’86, ’90, ’95). In 1991, Clint Corey was Bareback Bronc-Riding Champion of the World.
Throughout his career Clint Corey has been known for stability and consistency. For nearly two decades, Corey has steadily accrued day-money, averages, and titles, always qualifying for the National Finals Rodeo. Each year when the dust settled, he was left standing, without fanfare, in the winner’s circle. When asked to describe his winning techniques and strategy, Corey modestly replies, “I guess it’s good fortune.”
“Good fortune” indeed!
“Clint Corey’s career in the Ellensburg Rodeo is legendary,” notes Ellensburg Rodeo historian John Ludtka. Corey is the winningest bareback bronc rider in the history of the Ellensburg Rodeo. He captured the Ellensburg bareback title an awesome five times—’85, ’89, ’91, ’93, and ’96—an arena record that will be extremely difficult to surpass.
Clint Corey is still active and competitive, traveling from his Powell Butte, Oregon ranch to rodeos across America. Clint and his wife Dianna are most involved in raising their children—Bailey, Blaine, and Zane. But the Corey’s also raise Quarter Horses, and they break colts, run cattle, and farm their acreage. Clint teachers bronc-riding techniques in 3-day schools and also works with special needs children.