Lane Frost

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Lane Frost
Lane Frost at a rodeo event
Lane Clyde Frost

(1963-10-12)October 12, 1963
DiedJuly 30, 1989(1989-07-30) (aged 25)
Resting placeMount Olivet Cemetery in Hugo, Oklahoma
OccupationProfessional bull rider
Kellie Kyle
(m. 1984⁠–⁠1989)

Lane Clyde Frost (October 12, 1963 – July 30, 1989) was an American professional rodeo cowboy who specialized in bull riding, and competed in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). He was the 1987 PRCA World Champion bull rider and a 1990 ProRodeo Hall of Fame inductee. He was the only rider to score qualified rides on the 1987 PRCA Bucking Bull of the Year and 1990 ProRodeo Hall of Fame bull Red Rock. He sustained severe injuries at the 1989 Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo when the bull Takin' Care of Business struck him after the ride, and he died at a local hospital.[1][2]

Early life[edit]

At the time of Lane's birth, his parents lived in Lapoint, Utah. His father, Clyde, was on the rodeo circuit as a saddle bronc and bareback rider. His mother, Elsie, went to stay with her parents in Kim, Colorado, and he was born in the hospital in La Junta. He had an older sister, Robin, and a younger brother, Cody.[3][4]

Frost started riding dairy calves around age 5–6. His first rodeo awards were won when he was 10, at the "Little Buckaroos" Rodeos held in Uintah Basin: first in bareback, second in calf roping, and third in the "bull riding" (calf riding) event. He also competed in wrestling in junior high school. The family then moved to Oklahoma and he attended Atoka High School in Atoka.[2] In Oklahoma, he was the National High School Bull Riding Champion in 1981. He was the Bull Riding Champion of the first Youth National Finals in Fort Worth, Texas, in 1982.

On January 5, 1985, Frost married Kellie Kyle (born 1965), a barrel racer from Quanah, Texas, west of Wichita Falls.

Professional career[edit]

Frost joined the PRCA and began rodeoing full-time after graduating from high school in 1982. In 1987, he became the PRCA World Champion Bull Rider at age 24. That same year, the bull Red Rock, owned by Growney Bros. Rodeo Company, was voted Bucking Bull of the Year. In 309 attempts, no one had ever ridden him, and in 1988, at the Challenge of the Champions, Frost rode him in seven exhibition matches and was successful in four out of seven tries. He went on to compete at the Rodeo '88 Challenge Cup held as part of the Cultural Olympiad in association with the 1988 Winter Olympics in Calgary.[5]

Challenge of the Champions[edit]

Sometime in 1988, John Growney pondered a special competition between the two 1987 Champions.[6] It was decided that Frost and Red Rock would have seven showdowns at different rodeos in states across the West.[6] The event was titled the "Challenge of the Champions."[6] Red Rock was brought out of retirement and Frost finally rode him to the eight-second whistle for a scoring ride for 4 of the 7 matches.[6]


On July 30, 1989, at the Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo in Cheyenne, Wyoming, after completing a successful 85-point ride on a Brahma bull named Takin' Care of Business, Frost dismounted and landed in the mud. The bull turned and hit him in the back with his horn (although he was not gored), breaking several of his ribs.[7] He initially rose to his feet, waving at Tuff Hedeman for help. As he took a couple of steps, he fell to the ground, causing his heart and lungs to be punctured by the broken ribs.[8] He was rushed to Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead. He was 25 years old. No autopsy was performed. He posthumously finished third in the event.

Takin' Care of Business appeared in the 1990 National Finals Rodeo. He was retired in the 1990s, and put out to stud until he died in 1999.[9][10]

Frost is buried near his hero and mentor, Freckles Brown, in Mount Olivet Cemetery in Hugo, Oklahoma.[11]


After Frost's death, Cody Lambert, one of his traveling partners, created the protective vest that professional cowboys now wear when riding bulls.[1][12] Later, in 1996, the PBR made protective vests mandatory.[13]

In 1994, the biopic based on Frost's life, 8 Seconds, was released. Luke Perry played the role of Frost. Stephen Baldwin was cast as Tuff Hedeman.

Since 1996, the PBR has awarded the Lane Frost/Brent Thurman Award, given for the highest-scoring ride at the PBR World Finals.[14] The Lane Frost Health and Rehabilitation Center in Hugo is dedicated to his memory.

Country music star Garth Brooks paid tribute to Frost in the video for his 1990 hit single "The Dance".[15][16] Rodeo announcer Randy Schmutz wrote the song "A Smile Like That" about him.[17] The 1993 song "Red Rock" by the Smokin' Armadillos is about him, and he is mentioned at the end of the video for Korn's 2007 song "Hold On". Aaron Watson's 2012 album, Real Good Time, included the single "July in Cheyenne".[18] Kings of Leon 2013 music video for "Beautiful War" pays homage to Lane Frost.

Frost's parents have authorized Cowboy Bible: The Living New Testament, with a sketch of him on the cover. A documentary titled "The Challenge of the Champions: The Story of Lane Frost and Red Rock" premiered in 2008. It covers the match between them.[19]

After surviving an accident on the last lap of the 2015 Coke Zero 400 at Daytona International Speedway, NASCAR Cup Series driver Austin Dillon waved to the crowd with a similar gesture to that of Frost’s; he later stated that it was in tribute to Frost.[20]



  1. ^ a b "Lasting Legacy: Lane Frost and the rodeo community". Casper Star-Tribune Online. Archived from the original on July 28, 2009. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  2. ^ a b "Bull rider dies after being gored", Tulsa World, July 31, 1989.
  3. ^ "Remembering Lane". Wrangler Network. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  4. ^ "About Lane Frost |". Lane Frost Brand. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  5. ^ Kisselgoff, Anna (February 25, 1988). "Stage: Rodeo '88 At Olympic Festival". New York Times. Retrieved August 25, 2016.
  6. ^ a b c d "Professional Bull Riders - Remembering Lane Frost vs. Red Rock". Professional Bull Riders. March 11, 2011. Retrieved January 3, 2017.
  7. ^ a b "Lane Frost - Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame". Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  8. ^ "PRCA Rodeo Years 1988-1989". Lane Frost Web Site. Archived from the original on January 25, 2013. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  9. ^ "Frost crafting his bull-riding resume in the footsteps of famous relative". Las Vegas Review-Journal. December 4, 2014. Retrieved May 20, 2018.
  10. ^ "Lane Frost | Daily Dose Frost". The Daily Dose. August 10, 2017. Retrieved May 20, 2018.
  11. ^ "Cowboy's funeral draws throng", AP in Tulsa World, August 3, 1989.
  12. ^ Harwood, Rodney. "Protective vests, helmets revolutionized the sport of rodeo". Daily Record. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  13. ^ McKinney, Kelsey (September 6, 2019). "As Sports Become Safer, Bull Riding Doubles Down on Danger". GEN. Retrieved September 24, 2021.
  14. ^ "Dictionary". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved December 31, 2017.
  15. ^ Burchard, Jeremy (April 18, 2019). "How Garth Brooks' 'The Dance' Became a Beacon of Hope Through Tragedy". Wide Open Country. Retrieved March 2, 2020.
  16. ^ Roddam, Rick. "29 Years Ago: Lane Frost Dies At Cheyenne Frontier Days". 101.9 KING FM. Retrieved March 2, 2020.
  17. ^ Jane and Michael Stern, "Raging Bulls", The New Yorker, September 14, 1992, p. 93 (subscription required).
  18. ^ Chuck Dauphin, "Aaron Watson Finds Inspiration in Tragic Rodeo Star Lane Frost", Billboard, November 18, 2013.
  19. ^ "Documentary film examines Lane Frost's life". October 24, 2008. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  20. ^ "Dillon's post-crash wave a tribute to late bull rider Lane Frost". FOX Sports. July 6, 2015. Retrieved November 4, 2018.
  21. ^ "Professional Bull Riders - Lane Frost". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  22. ^ "Lane Frost". Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame | Fort Worth Texas. November 19, 2000. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  23. ^ "Lane Frost | Rodeo Hall of Fame". National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. Retrieved May 16, 2017.
  24. ^ "Cheyenne Frontier Days Hall of Fame Inductees". Cheyenne Frontier Days. Retrieved October 29, 2018.
  25. ^ "The Bull Riding Hall of Fame Class of 2017". The Bull Riding Hall of Fame. Retrieved June 4, 2017.
  26. ^ "Walk of Fame - Molalla Area Chamber of Commerce, OR". Retrieved May 17, 2017.

Other sources[edit]

"Cheyenne 1989 - The Last Ride". Lane Frost. Archived from the original on October 27, 2016. Retrieved February 18, 2020.

External links[edit]