Our own Ponca City Energy Rodeo team continued their ascension to the top of all lineworkers in the country at the 2017 Public Power Lineworker’s Rodeo held last week in San Antonio, Texas.
The team placed fourth in the United States in only its fourth trip to nationals and was the top finishing squad from the state of Oklahoma.
Literally climbing the pole towards the top spot, Ponca’s lineworkers placed 13th in their first trip to the event, 11th in the next, and 7th last year.
This year’s fourth place finish in the Hurtman Event was their best yet. The Ponca City team was comprised of journeyman lineworkers Tomas Alvarez, Jared Evans, and Chris Crain along with apprentice lineworkers Tanner Lee and Keenan Pappan.
“We are so very proud of our guys,” saidPonca City Energy’s Cindy Heidlage. “They work in a dangerous environment every day. When see these guys work… well, it can be a dangerous job and they have to rely on, depend on and trust each other because their lives could be put in jeopardy.”
In the slightly safer controlled environment of organized competition the gathering fosters tight competition between the teams, Heidlage says, but also furthers the strong sense of brotherhood between all.
“I have been to one of the national line rodeos with them, and it was really apparent that it doesn’t matter where you are from, there is such a camaraderie amongst all of them,” she said. “You can see that they love what they do.”
The other Oklahoma teams to compete were from Edmond Electric and GRDA, Grand River Dam Authority.