The World’s Richest One-Day Rodeo Just Got Richer

$500,000 Added to RFD-TV’s The American Side Pot, Bringing the Total to $1,500,000

(NASHVILLE, TENN. — October 27, 2016) In a special announcement on “Western Sports Weekly,” RFD-TV Events president and founder Patrick Gottsch announced the addition of $500,000 to the “side pot” of The American, bringing the total side pot to an unheard of $1,500,000. The total prize money awarded on February 19th will rise to an unprecedented $2,500,000. Additionally, Gottsch announced that only qualifiers to The American will be eligible for the side pot and should nobody win in 2017, the amount will carry over to 2018. RFD-TV recently signed a three-year commitment to hold The American at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, ensuring the long term success of the event. In only its fourth year RFD-TV’s The American has become one of the premier rodeos in the sport. In its first three years The American has awarded approximately $9,000,000 in cash and prizes.

“Each year we try to add a new wrinkle to The American to make it more even exciting for both the cowboys and rodeo fans, and believe that adding another half million to the payout does just that”, stated Patrick Gottsch, Founder & President of RFD-TV Events, LLC. “Our goal and focus since day one has been to help grow the sport of rodeo. We also wanted to do more for the Qualifier Contestants in order to give them even more incentive to enter and participate in The American’s unique format.”

RFD-TV would like to hear from the fans as to who they would like to see invited to The American in 2017. Fans are encouraged to vote for their favorite rodeo stars on RFD-TV’s online poll. Fans can vote as often as they like and updates will be provided daily on “Western Sports Round-Up” on Rural Radio and “Western Sports Weekly” on RFD-TV.

In addition to invitees in each rodeo event, 2016’s competition saw approximately 4,000 contestants attempt to qualify for a shot at the $1,000,000 side pot. The number of qualifiers is sure to grow in light of today’s announcement. Bareback riders fared well in the years 1 and 2. In its inaugural year Richie Champion walked away with $1,100,000 in prize money. The next year saw qualifier Taylor Price win The American, making bareback riders 2 for 2 in the first two years.

For more information on the event, including purchasing tickets, qualifier locations, hotel accommodations and more, visit

Photo caption: 2016 Saddle Bronc Champion, Wade Sundell

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About Rural Media Group, Inc. (RMG):
Rural Media Group, Inc. is the world’s leading provider of multimedia content dedicated to the rural and Western lifestyle. With a mission of reconnecting “city with country,” RMG is the parent company of RFD-TV, RURAL RADIO, FamilyNet, RFD-TV The Magazine, and RFD-TV The Theatre. RMG networks are distributed to more than 100 million homes worldwide by DBS, telco and cable systems including DISH Network, DIRECTV®, Comcast, AT&T U-Verse, Mediacom, Charter Spectrum, Suddenlink, Cox, and more than 600 independent rural cable systems. Corporate headquarters and broadcast operations are in Nashville, Tennessee.

About RFD-TV:
RFD-TV is the flagship network for Rural Media Group. Launched in December 2000, RFD-TV is the nation’s first 24-hour television network featuring programming focused on the agribusiness, equine and the rural lifestyle, along with traditional country music and entertainment. Top RFD-TV programming includes “MARKET DAY REPORT,” “RURAL EVENING NEWS,” “RURAL AMERICA LIVE,” “WESTERN SPORTS WEEKLY,” rodeo events such as “The American,” and award-winning entertainment such as “FarmHer,” “Small Town, Big Deal,” “The Dailey & Vincent Show,” “The Best of The Marty Stuart Show,” “Country’s Family Reunion,” “Larry’s Country Diner,” and “Hee Haw.”

Found exclusively on SiriusXM channel 147, this is the agribusiness and Western-lifestyle channel for the U.S. and Canada. RURAL RADIO’s program schedule revolves around original productions focused on agriculture, equine, hunting, fishing, Western sports, and living the country life in small towns around rural America. Broadcast operations for the station are located in Nashville, Tennessee. The channel airs multiple exclusive series including “MARKET DAY REPORT,” “RURAL EVENING NEWS,” “RURAL AMERICA LIVE,” and “WESTERN SPORTS ROUND-UP,” as well as “Outside the Barrel,” with Flint Rasmussen, “Commodity Wrap,” with Marlin Bohling, “AgPhD,” “RealAg Radio,” “AgDay,” “FFA Today,” and “Bass Pro Shops Outdoor World.” RURAL RADIO also carries live broadcasts of Western sports competitions such as the PBR, PRCA rodeos, and WPCA Chuckwagon races.

Billy Frey, Chief Marketing Officer, RFD-TV, e:, o: (615) 296-9357