Russell Cardoza, Terrebonne, Ore.
Russell Cardoza is starting to get the hang of this thing.
The Oregon cowboy was a Timed Event Championship rookie two seasons ago when he finished 11th in the average. Last March, he left Oklahoma with $10,000, half for finishing sixth in the average, and half for having the third fastest go-round. That’s solid improvement.
The goal, of course, is to win the title this weekend, but Cardoza surely will settle for making more Lazy E money. It is, after all, the main reason rodeo cowboys compete.
Cardoza is a two-time heeling qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (2009-10) who just missed playing on ProRodeo’s grandest stage last December – he finished 18th in the final world standings, and only the top 15 in each discipline earn the right to play in Las Vegas.
At the 2009 NFR, Cardoza and partner Charly Crawford earned more than $64,000, placing in six go-rounds and finishing third in the average. He knows what it takes to win cash in a hurry, which is a nice benefit to doing well this weekend.