New Masked Rider Takes Reins During Transfer

Written by Cory Chandler

Christi Chadwell accepted the reins to Midnight Matador Friday (April 16), becoming the Texas Tech University’s 2010-2011 Masked Rider.

The sophomore agricultural communications major grew up in what she refers to as a “red-and-black household.” Her parents, Kirby and Terri Chadwell, are Texas Tech graduates, and when Christi began learning how to ride horses at the age of 10, her father told her that she could someday fill the boots of the iconic mascot.

Chadwell has proven her father’s prediction accurate as she dons the Masked Rider’s cape. She will promote spirit within the university and goodwill for Texas Tech at athletic events and other school and civic functions across Texas.

The Masked Rider is a mysterious and striking symbol of Texas Tech school spirit and pride. Mounted on a black quarter horse and wearing a black mask, bolero hat, and a red-and-black cape, the Masked Rider leads the football team onto the field. Chadwell is the 49th student to serve as the Masked Rider.

The Garland native started riding and training horses at the age of 10. She competed in barrel racing and goat tying with the goal, she said, of building skills that would benefit her in the role of Masked Rider. She joined the Masked Rider Field Safety Team and even queried members of the Center for Campus Life to find out what she would need to do to try out for the position.

“I did everything I could to put myself in a position to become the Masked Rider,” Chadwell said, “and I am overjoyed that the day has finally arrived when I get to carry on one of Texas Tech’s most treasured traditions.”

Brianne Aucutt-Hight, the 2009-2010 Masked Rider, traveled 11,500 miles making appearances at athletic events, rodeos and other functions.

She expanded the role of the Masked Rider at Texas Tech athletic events as she appeared at more men’s and women’s basketball games than any other rider. She also continued a tradition started in spring 2009 of opening Texas Tech baseball games.

CONTACT: Gay Trammel-Witt, Masked Rider publicist, Center for Campus Life, Texas Tech University, (806) 742-5433,