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Bandy Murphy is Officially the “World’s Toughest Cowboy”

Union City, CA – June 4, 2007 -- Ariat International, Inc. announced today that its sponsored Toughest Cowboy competitor, Bandy Murphy, won the coveted “2007 World’s Toughest Cowboy” title in the June 3rd series finale’ of “Toughest Cowboy” on Fox Sports Network.

Murphy competed against seven very tough cowboys in one of rodeo’s most punishing competitions. Contenders not only test their skills in three roughstock disciplines: bareback riding, saddle bronc riding and bull riding, but the competition is a trial of physical strength and endurance, and mental toughness. Murphy earned the championship by gathering the most total points in a 4-way, six-round shootout against the other three finalists. “Ariat is proud to sponsor one of rodeo’s rising stars, Bandy Murphy,” said Beth Cross, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Ariat. “Murphy earned his title the hard way. His win is well-deserved, and proves he is the ultimate well-rounded competitor.”

Murphy’s latest win is one more accomplishment for the young Texan. Bandy Murphy, 24, was born in Okeechobee, Florida and now resides in Kingsbury, Texas. While his preferred event is bull riding, something he’s done since age 9, his recent win shows that he is a gifted all-around rodeo athlete. He set a new bull riding record at the 2006 College National Finals with a score of 91.5, and was a 2002, 2004 and 2006 College National Finals Rodeo qualifier. Murphy’s other accomplishments include winning the 2003 Prairie Circuit All-Around event, Rookie All-Around, and Reserve Bull Riding Champion.

About Ariat International, Inc.

Ariat International, Inc. is a leading manufacturer of innovative performance equestrian footwear, apparel, handbags and belts. Featuring a patented technology designed to delivery stability, durability and comfort, Ariat pioneered the application of advanced athletic shoe technology into English riding boots and authentic Western boots. Ariat products are sold in a network of retail outlets throughout the world. For more information about Ariat products or for the Ariat retailer nearest you, contact Ariat at 800.899.8141 or visit http://www.ariat.com.

About Toughest Cowboy

Toughest Cowboy is a test of strength, endurance and just plain toughness, as eight Toughest Cowboy contenders test their skills by competing in each of the three gut wrenching, roughstock disciplines—bareback riding, saddle bronc riding, and bull riding—in match play against one another. It's extraordinary for a cowboy to ride two horses and one bull in one night! This is no event for the weak - this is an iron man competition that only the strong will endure to be crowned the "Toughest Cowboy".

The format is simple: eight cowboys, three rides, one champion. Each cowboy gets on three animals (Bareback horse, Saddle Bronc horse, and a Bull) and competes head-to-head with another cowboy for wins in each of the three rides. The cowboy with the highest score in each ride gets a win, and the cowboy with the most wins is the Toughest Cowboy each night. In the event of a tie, total points will determine the winner.

For more information about the Toughest Cowboy series, visit http://www.toughestcowboy.com

PHOTO: Bandy Murphy proving to be the 'Toughest Cowboy.' Photo Credit:© World’s Toughest Bulls and Broncs/CowboyImages.net


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