Lefty Holman said, “When my wife asked me what I wanted to wear to the back number ceremony, my answer was something that not only had meaning to me, but something that every single contestant could relate to.
“The Man in the Arena“ represents us cowboys and cowgirls so well, especially for these next 10 nights. It takes so much getting down the road each year. Rodeo is so humbling and there’s so many ups and downs. And when the end of the season finally comes and you’re fortunate to be headed back to Vegas, a whole different level of preparation starts. Give it your all and tune out the noise because unless you’re in that arena too, you don’t fully understand what it all takes. Congratulations to every contestant. So much respect for the effort poured into a craft we all love so much!”
“It is not the critic who counts: not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles or where the doer of deeds could have done better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood, who strives valiantly, who errs and comes up short again and again, because there is no effort without error or shortcoming, but who knows the great enthusiasms, the great devotions, who spends himself in a worthy cause; who, at the best, knows, in the end, the triumph of high achievement, and who, at the worst, if he fails, at least he fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who knew neither victory nor defeat.”
Speech at the Sorbonne, Paris, April 23, 1910