April 25, 2019 500 AM
ABILENE – Presidio High School junior Marty Lee Martinez will be going to state competition in bull riding this summer. Martinez, 17, recently participated in the Texas High School Rodeo Association’s regional competition and qualified for the state event, which will be held June 9-15 in Abilene. A rider must stay on the bull for eight seconds, holding on with his legs and one hand. The other hand or any other part of his body must not touch the bull. “Eight seconds, that feels like an eternity,” Martinez said this week. Martinez has been competing since last summer and his points have accumulated from all the rides he has competed in to advance to state competition. “This last rodeo region finals, I won the region finals,” he said. He had been ranked in 7th place at the beginning of this last rodeo and ended ranked 3rd place in the regional bull riding standings. He explained that the judges score both the rider and the bull. The rider is judged on different things like style and techniques. The bull is scored on kicking, bucking, and the way they stand among other things. He added that the bull belongs to a stock contractor and he has never seen the bull before the ride. “I don’t know what’s going to happen,” he said of the ride and the bull. He added that he has been stepped on, trampled, and cut. “I’ve been cut, a laceration on my leg which almost cut an artery,” he said. “I don’t pay attention to that, not when I get hurt. I don’t pay attention, I block it, I just ride. It’s just like riding a tornado, rough.” He said the adrenaline rush was what he liked, “My dad has warned me about the adrenaline rush. Bull riding is one of my favorite sports,” he said. “My dad has been a mentor to me,” he added. “My dad is my eyes when I am on the bull, watching me, watching everything I do. Off the bull he tells me what I did right or wrong.” “I thank the people who support me, my sponsors, my dad, and my family,” Martinez said. He is the son of Marty and Monica Martinez of Presidio.