The Duncan Banner
When PRCA eight time World Champion Fred Whitfield saw the final product of his book, it was in a room featuring a black cowboy exhibit on the National Day of the Cowboy.
Whitfield had a book signing Saturday, National Day of the Cowboy, for his autobiography “Gold Buckles Don’t Lie: The Untold Tale of Fred Whitfield” at the Chisholm Trail Heritage Center. It had taken 2 1/2 years for him to put the book together, and he was glad to see how the book came out when he received the shipment Saturday.
Duncan is the first place for Whitfield’s book signing, but he has several other places planned, too.
“We decided to self-publish,” Whitfield said. “We did look at some big publishers, but we didn’t get the response wanted. It’s my story; I wanted to own it.”
He said the book is about the places he’s been throughout the years. He’s been calf roping more than 30 years, but has been doing it professionally for about 24 years.
Whitfield said he wants to inspire youth who are interested in becoming cowboys and getting involved in rodeo.
“I want to be an inspiration, whether they’re African American, caucasian or Spanish,” he said.
He said rodeoing has been a fun experience, and he’s enjoyed his time riding horses and roping cattle. He said the competition has been part of what’s driven him to be involved in rodeos.
He said the success of a person in rodeo is based on how hard they work to succeed. As such, he said all the money won is money well earned.
“I’ve always been my own boss,” he said. “One hundred percent of the profit is mine.”
Aside from competition, he said traveling around the country has been another draw for the rodeo life. He said there have been plenty of people he’s met throughout the years, and many of those people have remained life-long friends of his.
“I’ve made lots of friends,” Whitfield said. “There’s some I made when I was a rookie 24 years ago. And we still keep in touch.”