World Champion Tie-Down Roper Tyson Durfey experienced the loss of not only one, but two great equine partners within the past three years. The loss of these amazing animal athletes had a great affect on not only his rodeo career but also his drive to continue as a professional athlete.

“It was just devastating. I mean to lose two good horses that fast its just incredibly uncommon . . . I actually didn’t want to rope, I was so upset for several months, I didn’t want to rope anymore I wanted to be done,” Durfey said.

Durfey returned to rodeo in 2020 with his new horse Blue Duck and hit the road to then qualify for his fourteenth National Finals Rodeo.

As Durfey was ready to get his season going in 2021, he suffered from a torn MCL and injured meniscus after being run over by a steer. Although Durfey attempted to compete with the injuries, he was unable to perform at the caliber necessary to win.

Due to his goal-oriented mind-set Durfey set out with a new objective in mind and signed up for a program known as the MDK Project. The MDK Project aims to push members to their limits both mentally and physically with the intentions of bettering one’s self-discipline and mental toughness.

With his family in mind, Durfey completed the project and came out with a new outlook on life, rodeo and what all he’s capable of.

“Going through that and competing when a lot of guys didn’t make it through gave me the confidence to come back again in 2022 and re-establish my goals and say, ‘hey I want to go to the NFR again and I want to be a world champion’,” Durfey said.

While out due to his injury, Durfey was able to spend time with his wife Shea and their kids, including newborn son Tyen Cross, as well as work on their businesses.

Durfey is currently healed and back on the road to compete for the summer run.

“I believe God put me on this Earth to be a cowboy and that’s what I want to do."