Photo at top by Purple Fairy Imagery

18-year-old Binalong local Tom Ings has recently spent ten weeks in Queensland and many more travelling across the country to finish in second place in the tour standings of the Australian Professional Rodeo Association,  (APRA) Junior NFR Finals. 

At the finals, Tom rode two out of three of his bulls in outstanding fashion, in what is his last year as a junior before moving to the adult category. 

Tom’s mum, Karey Ings, spoke to The Times about her son’s recent rodeo journey, travelling all over the country to live out his dream.


“Last season has just run from July 22 right through until last month, making it a 12-month season. Tom has probably done 70-plus rodeos in the last 12 months. He has done a rodeo in Tasmania, two in South Australia, and a countless number in Victoria, New South Wales, and Queensland,” Karey said.

“He’s recently spent ten weeks in Queensland plus did six different trips before and after that too. Tom’s also rode 200-plus bulls for the season.

“Within those 12 months, he’s done steers, junior bulls and novice bulls in the Australian Professional Rodeo Association. Some weekends, he could have got on up to six rides or more. Tom’s had a really busy but successful season.

Tom Ings – Photo by Kerry McFarlane Photography

“In the APRA, he also won the Australian Premier State Rodeo circuit for NSW. That’s for second-division bull riding which he won a buckle for. 

“Tom also competes in the Australian Bushman’s Camp Draft Rodeo Association at the same time and also made it to the finals there which he competed in January. 

“Tom holds a big credit to George Hempenstall in Yass who provides him with his practice bulls. Tom goes in there and trains and practices with George a lot. George has helped Tom a lot over the years and encouraged him with everything.”

Tom’s adult season for his bull riding starts in October, with him also training to make his rookie year – which is a different championship altogether. 

Tom left high school last year and is currently doing his farrier apprenticeship before his next season starts. 

Some of Tom’s great mates and rodeo friends will be travelling to the United States this year for College, while Tom will stay in Australia and live out his rodeo dream.

“Four of Tom’s mates will be going to College in Texas. Tom was also given a scholarship and was meant to be heading to Canada in August, but he would’ve had to go back to school to finish his Year 11 and 12 grades and he decided he didn’t want to go back to school.”

Good luck Tom on your future rodeo endeavours!

Tim Warren