The first time Joe Beaver saw the line back dun, with a mane as thick as berry vines and so long that you had to tuck it under your breast collar, he knew he had to have him. Pat’s career started with Butch Gillespie and George Chappell; from there he went to Jack Newton and on to Bill Buteau. The first time Joe saw him go was with his dear friend Calvin Greely roping and Bill owned him. Joe started asking around, interested in buying Pat and all he heard was what an outlaw he was and how crippled he was. Being about half outlaw himself, cripple was not in Joe Beaver’s vocabulary. He was just sore a lot of the time. After many requests to try to buy Pat, with the answer always being “Not For Sale”, Joe finally got the call from Bill to come try the horse. His terms were solid, 3 calves, no vet check, cash only. Turns out Joe only ran 2 calves, he already had a vet appointment and he brought a check. That was April 1985 and everyone but Dr. Charles Graham, Joe’s mom and wife, Jenna thought he had made a huge mistake.
Joe went on to ride Pat for 8 years, he won 4 World Championship Calf Roping titles on him, 3 NFR average titles, and tied a world record of 6.7 seconds on Pat in 1986. Pat was the 1987 PRCA Calf Roping Horse of the Year.
Pat was the greatest all around calf horse ever ridden by Joe Beaver. He would work great at Cheyenne with a 30 foot score and 300 pound calves and then Las Vegas at the National Final Rodeo with a 10 foot box and smaller calves; he was the best at either set up.
Without the help of Dr. Charles Graham, Kent Karnei, Calvin Greely and Joe’s wife Jenna, Pat would have never lasted as long as he did. Jenna would ride and swim Pat. Swimming saved his feed and legs before every big match roping and before the summer rodeo run. Kent Karnei shod him his entire life with Joe, sometimes at all hours of the day and night. Calvin Greely was the only one Joe would let tune up Pat. Dr. Graham was the “fixer”, he took care of Pat like he was a million dollar syndicated stud. Every time Joe had a concern, Dr. Graham would say “bring him in, I’ll fix him”.
Joe thanks the roping gods every day for letting him have Pat. He misses him dearly. Pat helped Joe Beaver make a mark on the calf roping world. On his tombstone it reads, “Here lies the King of Sling Pistol’s Pat”.