(Editor's note: PRCA release)
COLORADO SPRINGS - Sage Kimzey, a seven-time PRCA Bull Riding World Champion, including in 2021, is out for the remainder of the 2022 season with a left shoulder injury.
Kimzey had been bothered by a left shoulder injury since high school, and the injury came to a head when he was bucked off Pete Carr Pro Rodeo's Severe Weather at the Parker County Sheriff's Posse Frontier Days and PRCA Rodeo, June 10 in Weatherford, Texas.
"I have been riding with a hurt shoulder for a real long time," said Kimzey, 27. "I dislocated it in high school and tore a bunch of stuff up and it never came out again until Weatherford (June 10). It popped out when I was riding him. I always swore that if it ever came out, I wasn't going to be one of those guys who wrecked his shoulder joint just to keep going to get on bulls. This has been a prolonged wait to have surgery on it. I knew I needed it fixed ever since high school.
"Obviously I was wanting to get through my career before I had to have it fixed, but the good Lord had other plans."
Kimzey saw Dr. Tandy Freeman in Dallas on June 14 and learned that season-ending surgery would be required on his shoulder.
"I have multiple tears in my labrum, and I have got a totally torn supraspinatus (which is one of the rotator cuff muscles)," Kimzey said. "I have a displaced bicep tendon and a broken collarbone. I also have some other rotator cuff damage. It is a culmination over the years. I think most of it probably happened during the wrecks when I was in high school. When I was a sophomore in high school, I was probably 16 and I got bucked off a bull and then the bull fell on me and hurt my left shoulder.
"I never had surgery. I just took time off and it was always good enough to ride. It is going to be such a complex surgery that Tandy is going to reach out to a bunch of his orthopedic peers to get a game plan."
Kimzey is third in the PRCA | RAM World Standings with $115,633 and qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo eight consecutive years. Kimzey also has won five of the past seven PRCA Division 1 Xtreme Bulls Tour titles, including last year.
Despite the setback, Kimzey was able to keep things in perspective.
"I feel extremely blessed that I made it 10 years because most guys don't make it eight years with a bum shoulder," Kimzey said. "It has been an incredible ride with my messed-up shoulder, but I'm definitely ready to have it fixed. It will not be too long, and I will back in the arena.
"I'm just going to enjoy the time at home right now, especially with my little man (Steele, who is 4½ months) being born this year. This will give me time at home with my wife (Alexis) and son. That will be different, but really good. I'm just really going to enjoy that time and focus on all the good that comes out of this.
"It is pretty disappointing (being out for the year), but at the end of the day it is a dangerous sport we play. Everybody knows the dangers are glaring in this sport and I have been really fortunate that I have only had minor bumps and bruises in my professional career. This is just part of it. It will all be there when I come back. It all takes time. I'm just going to trust my surgeons and trust my doctors and I will definitely take my rehab seriously and go from there."