Interview with Ultimate Cowboy Showdown’s Keaton Barger and Cody Traylor

The new season of INSP’s hit competition series Ultimate Cowboy Showdown is upon us and I couldn’t be more excited.

Premiering on Thursday, April 21st at 8 pm ET, Ultimate Cowboy Showdown season 3 will see 14 male and female contestants brave the unforgiving landscape of Douglas, Wyoming to compete in a series of grueling challenges in hopes to win the coveted belt buckle, a herd of cattle and a lifetime of bragging rights.

Country music icon Trace Adkins along with a panel of experts will judge the cowboys on a variety of things and one-by-one the contestants will be eliminated until the winner is crowned.

I had the pleasure of chatting with two of the 14 cowboys, Keaton Barger and Cody Traylor, to get their take on the cowboy competition series and tease us about what we can expect to see during the 10-episode 3rd season of the Ultimate Cowboy Showdown.


Tvshowpilot: What inspired you to enter Ultimate Cowboy Showdown?

Keaton Barger: My parents! They said I would win.

Tvshowpilot: This is the third season for this fan-favorite cowboy competition series. Did you watch the first two seasons or do anything else to prepare for the competition?

Keaton Barger: To mentally prepare, I watched every season of Ultimate Cowboy Showdown twice and Survivor.

Cody Traylor: Yes!

Tvshowpilot: Keaton, you’re a seasoned rodeo competitor and have competed in contests with many rodeo associations. How did you start competing in rodeos? And did your vast rodeo experience in any way help you when competing on UCS?

Keaton Barger: I started competing in rodeos when I was seven. My roping coaches are some of the biggest names in Arkansas – Jeff Lee, Shawn Harris, Rickey Hyde, and Freeman Issacs. All the lessons I learned from them, my Dad, Uncle Chad, and my ranch boss, Eddy Whitehurst all pushed me to keep moving forward.

Keaton Barger on Ultimate Cowboy Showdown season 3

Tvshowpilot: Cody, you’re an Air Force mechanic turned horse trainer with hopes of one day owning your own operation. How has one career lent itself to the other? And how did both of these experiences help you when competing on UCS?

Cody Traylor: Well, I reckon the military taught me a lot about life. It taught me how to live and work on my own and as a team, which was the biggest thing I could take going into the show. I try to live by the Air Force’s core values in every part of my life.

Tvshowpilot: Which part of the prize are you most excited about: a herd of cattle, Ultimate Cowboy Showdown belt-buckle, or a lifetime of bragging rights?

Keaton Barger: I want it all! I have never had the best luck. I’ve worked through blood, sweat, tears, and numerous injuries to defy all the odds. In my heart, all I want is to make my family and Arkansas proud.

Cody Traylor: I was really excited for the Arrow-quip Portable Corral. The bragging rights come with it, but the metal will always be there for me.

Tvshowpilot: Ultimate Cowboy Showdown is hosted by country music legend Trace Adkins. How was it working with him? And how was Trace as a judge?

Keaton Barger: It was a dream! I grew up listening to his music. He is a great guy!

Cody Traylor: It was definitely a bit intimidating at first, but Trace is a great man and a good judge. I enjoyed being able to pick his brain and talk to him like a normal person.

Tvshowpilot: What was your favorite part about being on the third season of Ultimate Cowboy Showdown?

Keaton Barger: My favorite parts were filming in the beautiful area we were in and competing against that caliber of cowboy. Plus, I made some great friends and gained a brother. Buck Faust is family now; I would take a bullet for him.

Cody Traylor: Getting the chance to work with and meet so many great guys from all over the country!

Cody Traylor on Ultimate Cowboy Showdown season 3

Tvshowpilot: Here on the blog we are all about TV shows. So, are there any TV shows you’re currently into?

Keaton Barger: Yellowstone, 1883, and Peaky Blinders.

Cody Traylor: I spend most of my free time writing poetry and songs, but when I watch TV, I watch rodeos.

Tvshowpilot: Finally, why should people watch season 3 of Ultimate Cowboy Showdown on INSP? Any fun moments or interesting stories from the set to share?

Keaton Barger: This will be the toughest season yet with the best cowboys!

Cody Traylor: I think viewers should watch for the entertainment value. I mean getting a bunch of scruffy cowboys from all over the country together is quality entertainment!


And there you go, a quick interview with Cody Traylor and Keaton Barger, who are just 2 of the 14 contestants competing in season 3 of the Ultimate Cowboy Showdown.

Don’t forget to tune in on Thursday, April 21st when the new season premieres! And meanwhile follow the Ultimate Cowboy Showdown on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram for all the latest news and updates on the series.

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