Fast N Forward Stirrups started as a college project in 2012 at NWOSU in Alva, Oklahoma. As a class project, we were to build a mock business. At the time, I was team roping quite a bit and thought it would be great to develope a business that involved the sport I loved.
Nick Sartain (2009 World Champion Header) came to rope with us at practice the same day we were assigned the task of a mock business. Our hometown rodeo was coming up quickly so Nick talked about his short score preperation since Alva's rodeo is in a very small arena. Nick explained that at the NFR, he pulled the fenders toward the back of his saddle to help keep his feet behind his hips. This kept him from getting beat out of the box. Upon hearing this, I had a flashback of my grandfather, Bill James, telling me to keep my toes down when I was younger. By moving the fenders to the back of the saddle, Nick was simply forcing himself to keep his toes down. I knew there had to be a less taxing way to accomplish that position.
That weekend I returned back to my home town, Abilene, KS, to do one thing, design a pair of stirrups to help ropers keep their toes down. A friend of mine had a shop in town so he and I quickly fabricated a pair out of the scrap metal they had laying around their shop. After getting a prototype knocked out, I raced out to the ranch to test my theory. We loaded the steers, ran a few and to my delight, THEY WORKED! The stirrups were pretty close to where I wanted them so I fabricated about 10 pair and let some friends try them out to get their feedback. The rest is history.
What started as a mock business in college, turned into a real business. Today, we distribute patented stirrups (US PATENT 9,334,152) to the biggest retailers of western tack in the United States.