Archive for August, 2012

postheadericon Centerfold offers payoffs for bronc riders

Carr Pro Rodeo's Centerfold led Jeremy Meloncon to the saddle bronc riding title at the Silverton (Texas) Buck Wild Days Rodeo. The 11-year-old sorrel mare also led Ryan Bestol to a fifth-place finish in Silverton. In this image, Cody Martin rides Centerfold in Guymon, Okla., this past May. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

Carr Pro Rodeo’s Centerfold led Jeremy Meloncon to the saddle bronc riding title at the Silverton (Texas) Buck Wild Days Rodeo. The 11-year-old sorrel mare also led Ryan Bestol to a fifth-place finish in Silverton. In this image, Cody Martin rides Centerfold in Guymon, Okla., this past May. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

SILVERTON, Texas – World-class horses lead to world champion cowboys.

For those who competed at the Buck Wild Days Rodeo last week, the men who ride bucking horses saw that over and over again. But one particular animal athlete, Carr Pro Rodeo’s Centerfold, really showed off inside Wood Memorial Arena.

“She had two really nice trips in Silverton,” said Pete Carr, owner of the Dallas-based firm that provided the livestock for the annual rodeo. “She’s been a great mare for a long time.”

Yes, she has. Centerfold has been selected to buck at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, an honor bestowed upon by the top saddle bronc riders on the ProRodeo trail. In Silverton, she likely got some more votes for the 2012 finale, which will take place Dec. 6-15 in Las Vegas.

Jeremy Melancon of Huntsville, Texas, won the Buck Wild Days Rodeo title by matching moves with the 11-year-old sorrel mare for 83 points. Melancon earned $1,066, but he wasn’t the only bronc rider to cash a check on the horse; Ryan Bestol of Hyannis, Neb., rode Centerfold for 76 points to finish fifth, earning $226.

Of course, it helps that both Melancon and Bestol are rising stars in rodeo.

“To win a rodeo, a guy has to draw well and take care of business, and I think of those guys handed her just right,” Carr said.

Cody Heffernan was the most talented bull rider in Silverton, riding Carr’s Mingus Nights for 84 points in the opening go-round. How tough was the bull riding in the Texas Panhandle community? The Australian cowboy was the only bull rider to stay on for the qualifying eight seconds.

Other big winners were bareback rider Bill Tutor of Huntsville, who won the first round and the two-ride aggregate total and $702; all-around cowboy Trell Etbauer, who pocketed $1,434 in tie-down roping and steer wrestling, including a share of the bulldogging title with Justin Blaine Davis; team ropers Trey Harmon and Brady Harmon; tie-down roper Jesse Clark; and barrel racer Tara Timms.

Silverton Buck Wild Days Rodeo
Silverton, Texas, Aug. 16-18
All-around cowboy:
Trell Etbauer, $1,434, steer wrestling and tie-down roping.

Bareback riding: First round: 1. Bill Tutor, 81 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Sierra Madre, $351; 2. Colt Bruce, 75 on Carr’s Island Girl, $263; 3. (tie) Codi Myers, on Carr’s Short Fuse, and Wyatt Hancock, on Carr’s Step Mom,73, $132 each. Second round: 1. Shon Gibson, 68 points Carr Pro Rodeo’s Collins Pride, $351; no other qualified rides. Average: 1. Bill Tutor, 81 points on one head, $351; 2. Colt Bruce, 75, $263; 3. Wyatt Hancock, 73, $175; 4. Johnae Killian, 70, $88.

Steer wrestling: 1. (tie) Justin Blaine Davis and Trell Etbauer, 4.6 seconds, $919 each; 3. Kash Koester, 4.8, $659; 4. Riley Duvall, 5.2, $485; 5. Monty Eakin, 5.3, $312; 6. Cody Moore, 5.4, $173.

Team roping: 1. Trey Harmon/Braden Harmon, 6.2 seconds, $1,291 each; 2. Jake Orman/Boogie Ray, 6.4, $1,069; 3. (tie) Tommy Edens/Trey Norris III and Nick Thompson/Justin Pruitt, 7.0, $735 each; 5. Casey Gattis/Seth Smithson, 7.7, $401; 6. Chase Boekhaus/Austin Rogers, 7.9, $223.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. Jeremy Melancon, 83 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Centerfold, $1,066; 2. Casey Sisk, 80 on Carr’s Miss Congeniality, $808; 3. Sterling Crawley, 79 on Carr’s Choir Girl, $581; 4. Dean Wadsworth, 77 on Carr’s Deuces Wild, $388; 5. Ryan Bestol, 76 on Carr’s Centerfold, $226; 6. Ryan Montroy, 75 on Carr’s Get Back Jack, $162.

Tie-down roping: 1. Jesse Clark, 9.6 seconds, $1,068; 2. R.H. Whitten, 10.8, $884; 3. Tommy Smith, 11.1, $699; 4. Trell Etbauer, 11.3, $515; 5. Shank Edwards, 12.0, $331; 6. Tyson Runyan, 12.1, $184.

Barrel racing: 1. Tara Timms, 17.72 seconds, $721; 2. Jordan Taton, 17.94, $627; 3. Cindy Smith, 18.00, $533; 4. Susan Siggins, 18.03, $439; 5. (tie) Andrea Wolf and Tracey Austin-Ivy, 18.08, $298 each; 7. Lizzy Ehr, 18.18, $157; 8. Whitney Dutton, 18.24, $63.

Bull riding: First round: 1. Cody Heffernan, 84 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Mingus Nights, $322; no other qualified rides. Second round: No qualified rides. Average: 1. Cody Heffernan, 84 points on one head, $322.

postheadericon Royal Ranch Camp reaches children

Youth get a great chance to learn about the world, themselves in just four days

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Life’s lessons come in a variety of ways, but Al Davis likes it when they come a little old school.

That’s one reason why he likes the American Royal’s Ranch Camp, a four-day adventure in which more than 70 children learn about college, agriculture and a few things about themselves.

“It’s getting out of your normal neighborhood and seeing there are other people and other things that are bigger than that,” said Davis, the American Royal’s manager of education. “When you go to camp, you know just a handful of people, but over a few days you’ve become a healthy community. You can’t help but want that around you. You want to keep that.

“With today’s social media, they’ve been able to extend that beyond the four days they’re at camp. They communicate all year long, and they have positive role models leading them.”

The program was established 13 years ago when Davis served as a 4-H Extension agent. Starting as Open Camp then Cabins 4 Kids, it had the goal of working with inner city youth and designed in the 4-H model to offer support, education and instill youth with agrarian and 4-H values. In the years that have followed, Cabins 4 Kids and the Royal Ranch Camp have blossomed. As children mature in the program, they become more involved.

That foundation has been a key ingredient in the teaching and training of the region’s youth. Youngsters from ages 7-12 are campers. Those 13-15 are involved in Leadership 101, which provides training and practicum to assist the teens in taking the next step in the hierarchy of the camp’s program. Those that are 16 and older are counselors and oversee a big portion of what happens over the four days.

“It works because little kids look up to big kids, and big kids like to boss little kids,” Davis said. “They all learn positive life skills. They learn whether to lead, how to follow, how to teach. They learn how everything has a consequence. We take all those things and teach through activities.”

This year’s camp took place in mid-July. The students left Kansas City on July 13, with stops at the University of Kansas and Kansas State University. The caravan’s final stop for the day was at Rock Springs 4H Center near Junction City, Kan. So why detour through Lawrence, Kan., and Manhattan, Kan.?

“We want these kids to see a college campus and get a feel for it,” Davis said. “As a first-generation college graduate, I was not scared to go to college it was a matter of where. I had been on college campuses so much as a youth because of 4-H and sports camp, it was not scary to me. The kids who see a campus like that are more likely to go to college. The fear is gone. The kids that don’t want to go to college have never been to a college campus or have had a college experience.

“A lot of those kids come from the inner city, where they don’t get those opportunities. The reason the kids that have been involved in 4H and FFA have been so successful is because they have a lot of activities on college campuses. They’ve stayed in the college dorms, so they’ve been able to have the college experience. That’s what we want to give all the kids.”

It’s working, but Davis knew it would. He was involved in 4H as a child and saw just how special programs like the Royal Ranch Camp can be.

“My dad died when I was a little kid, and my mom was always looking for opportunities for me to be involved,” he said. “I was 12 years old involved in 4H, and they didn’t have enough counselors. The first year, I watched, but I saw that it could be so much better. As a 13-year-old, I was basically running camp. I was teaching, setting up workshops.

“I know what it did for me. I was told that I had an opportunity to do something really big, that I could make a difference in other kids’ lives. I think it’s something kids need to experience.”

It’s come full circle, too. Davis has seen others who have followed suit.

“I look at that original group of counselors, and a lot are following their calling,” Davis said. “They’re teaching or working for non-profits. I know one who is working for the state department for poverty-stricken countries.

“For their lives, they’re saying they want to make a difference. Yes, we have some kids that are engineers or are successful in their own ways, but we have so many that are involved. Those first 7-year-olds are now sophomores in college, and they still continue to volunteer. It’s bigger than any one person.”

It’s fairly incredible that just four days can make that much of a difference in youngsters’ lives.

“We have kids from all different races,” Davis said. “We have kids that are fat; we have kids that are skinny; we have rich kids and poor kids. You can’t tell any difference.

“I guarantee they’re going to give back. They’re going to be great parents.”

That’s what makes the American Royal’s commitment to youth and education so special. The American Royal is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charity for children that does several activities like the Royal Ranch Camp. It’s why Davis has worked to build the Royal Ranch Camp into what it is today and what he hopes it becomes in the years to come. Whether it’s learning about a college campus or learning to ride a horse, there are many pieces of the puzzle that make the camp worthwhile to so many.

“It’s been a great program, because we know we’re reaching kids and teaching them things they didn’t even know about themselves,” he said. “As far as I’m concerned, every kid should have this experience.”

postheadericon Getting to know a little bit more

One of the amazing aspects of my job is learning some things about people I don’t know. Whether it’s visiting with an injured bareback rider from Alberta or interviewing a barrel racer from Pennsylvania, I have an opportunity to do something most people don’t.

It’s an odd combination of being curious, which I am, and being fairly talkative, which I am. It’s also the very best way I can think of to tell other people’s stories. I study what I can so I’m able to have as much history on the subject as possible before I start asking questions.

Still, some of the most basic questions – “Why do you rodeo?” – bring out the most amazing answers.

Since I write so often for Women’s Pro Rodeo News, I have an opportunity to learn so much about some of the most amazing horses in our industry. I get to tell readers about them in the official publication of the WPRA.

Do you want to know why Shada Brazile is hot on the rodeo trail this year? You will have a chance in the September issue of the magazine. Brazile, the wife of 16-time world champion Trevor Brazile, will be featured in a story about the WPRA Qualifying Tour, a series of events that will enable cowgirls the opportunity to be part of the 2013 Calgary (Alberta) Stampede.

Of the four rodeos involved in the story, Shada Brazile placed in three of them: Longview, Wash.; Gerry, N.Y.; and Lawton, Okla.

But you’ll get to read more about that in just a few weeks. Stay tuned.

postheadericon School days and a growing business

My girls are in school, leaving Daddy Daycare somewhat empty most of the time. It's a strange experience, but the timing is magnificent.

My girls are in school, leaving Daddy Daycare somewhat empty most of the time. It’s a strange experience, but the timing is magnificent.

Today marks a new beginning for me, TwisTED Rodeo and Rodeo Media Relations.

Since Dec. 1, 2008, I’ve divided my time between the growth of my business and the growth of my youngest child. It’s an odd combination of an upstart company and Daddy Daycare, and it’s an awesome blessing to have both maturing quite well.

Channing started preschool today, the same week her big sister, Laney, began fifth grade. It’s quite different this morning as I work on several projects to not hear toys being banged around or the sound of Barney on the television or the visions of a little girl dancing and twirling in front of me as I work, regularly directing me with, “Daddy, watch this.”

I’ll still get a good flavor of my little girl at home with me, since she’ll only be in preschool three days a week. But her next step in education comes at a time when my schedule is at its busiest. God’s timing is awesome, as if He’s allowed me this grand opportunity to share Channing’s first few years and prepared me for an expanding business.

It’s something I never will take for granted.

postheadericon Carr horses lead to big checks in Lovington

LOVINGTON, N.M. – Kaycee Feild is just 25 years old, but he’s already established as one of the very best bareback riders in ProRodeo.

Already he’s a world champion, having won the title a season ago. He’s qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo four times, and in the last nine months, he’s won four of the most prestigious titles in the sport – the NFR average, the Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo, RodeoHouston and the Calgary (Alberta) Stampede.

Kaycee Feild

Kaycee Feild

He added the Lea County Fair and Rodeo title to his resume last week, matching moves with another great world champion in Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal, the 2005 Bareback Riding Horse of the Year. In doing so, Feild made quite a statement, posting 89 points to win the title and a $4,496 paycheck.

“That’s what I ride bucking horses for is to get on the rankest, baddest horses,” Feild said, acknowledging that Real Deal has quite a reputation, one that has him as part of the eliminator group of broncs at the NFR every December. “I can prove, not only to my friends but also to myself, that I can spur anything and that I can spur the bad ones.

“It’s definitely a confidence booster when you can get on a bad one and spur him every jump.”

It helped quite a bit that Real Deal was quite exceptional inside Jake McClure Arena.

“I knew that horse had a different move around the post (of the chute), but I wasn’t expecting it four times,” Feild said of how many times the powerful 12-year-old bay gelding changed leads during the eight-second ride. “It sure was fun. I really couldn’t just sit down the first two or three jumps. It took me that long to extend my spur stroke.”

How tough was the bareback riding? Feild’s 89 was just one point better than that of fellow NFR qualifiers Dusty LaValley and Matt Bright. LaValley spurred Carr’s Black Coffee and Bright handled Carr’s Island Girl for the 88-point second-place rides on the final night of competition; they won $2,997 each.

Travis Sheets wasn’t quite that many points, but his 85-point ride on Carr’s True Lies was good enough to win saddle bronc riding in Lovington. For that feat, Sheets pocketed $4,190.

“I’ve seen him a couple of times, and I’ve heard good stories about him,” said Sheets, of Hyannis, Neb. “I was pretty excited to have him.”

Sheets was just a point better than two cowboys who finished in a tie for second place; Troy Crowser rode Carr’s Cool Runnings, while Chuck Schmidt and Carr’s Miss Congeniality danced across the arena dirt. Crowser and Schmidt earned $2,793 each. But the week belonged to Sheets, who posted the winning ride during the rodeo’s opening performance on Aug. 8; True Lies also bucked on Aug. 10 and led Curtis Garton to 81 points, good enough to finish in a three-way tie for fifth place.

“That horse felt really good,” he said. “He just feels like a million dollars. I’d like to haul him in the trailer with me and get on him everywhere I go.”

postheadericon NFR qualifier has sights set on Duncan

DUNCAN, Okla. – Jeanne Anderson won both the year-end and the finale titles last year in the Prairie Circuit.

She’d love to do it again this year. With just a month and a half remaining on the regular season, Anderson is the No. 1 barrel racer in the region, having earned more than $6,800.

Jeanne Anderson

Jeanne Anderson

“It’s really a big deal to me to compete in the Prairie Circuit,” said Anderson, a two-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier from White City, Kan. “I really like my circuit, and I make sure I focus on it. Winning both the circuit and the circuit finals last year was really cool for me.”

Even though she has a slim lead over Tana Poppino of Big Cabin, Okla., Anderson knows the road to back-to-back titles is winding and uphill. In fact, she is consulting with veterinarians at Kansas State University to find out what is ailing Firebug, the 13-year-old gelding that has been her main partner on the rodeo trail.

“It’s something high in her right hind leg, and it’s real hard to X-ray anything up there,” Anderson said. “They’re going to try to do a nuclear scan, and hopefully it’s going to tell us where it is and where to start doctoring.”

She knows it’ll take a healthy mount to achieve some of her goals, the primary one being another circuit title via Destination Duncan and the 2012 Ram Prairie Circuit Finals Rodeo, set for Oct. 18-20 at the Stephens County Expo Center.

“I’m really excited about having the circuit finals in Duncan this year,” Anderson said. “I think the people in Duncan want to put on a good finals, and that’s good for us. We’re one of the toughest circuits in rodeo, so it’ll be good to finally have a good finals.”

Anderson is one of nine ProRodeo contestants who lead the standings with a month and a half remaining in the regular season, which ends Sept. 30. Other leaders are bareback rider Jared Keylon of Uniontown, Kan.; steer wrestler Dean Gorsuch of Gering, Neb.; team roping-header Hunter Munsell of Arnett, Okla.; team roping-heeler Braden Harmon of Mustang, Okla.; saddle bronc rider Jesse James Kirby of Dodge City, Kan.; tie-down roper Hunter Herrin of Apache, Okla.; steer roper Rocky Patterson of Pratt, Kan.; and bull rider Dustin Elliott of North Platte, Neb.

The leaderboard is chalk full of great athletes, including world champions Gorsuch (two), Patterson (two) and Elliott. In addition, Herrin is a five-time NFR qualifier, so there is plenty of great talent in the region that includes Oklahoma, Kansas and Nebraska.

“My biggest goal is to make it back to the NFR, but my circuit is right there with it,” Anderson said.

Sometimes rodeo pays great dividends; sometimes, it’s quite a struggle. The latter has been the case for Anderson this season.

“This has been a horrible year,” said Anderson, who has just a $37 lead over Poppino, a good friend and traveling partner. “Firebug’s hurt. During Woodward (the third week in July), he slipped. It got really bad in Hill City.”

That was a little more than a week later. She turned out of two rodeos in Iowa that week and rode a younger horse in Dodge City, a tour rodeo with the largest purse of any event in the Prairie Circuit. That particular week included major stops in Abilene, Kan., and Phillipsburg, Kan.

“I’m pretty much a one-horse girl right now,” she said. “I did well at Burwell (Neb.), Wahoo (Neb.) and Manhattan (Kan.), and I was really excited to go on my Kansas run that week. It got disappointing pretty fast.”

Still, Anderson is holding out hope Firebug recovers quickly.

“To qualify for the circuit finals, you need to have a healthy horse,” she said. “You have to be consistent and have some luck.”

When it all goes right, championships follow. Year-end champions and winners from the circuit finals earn qualifications to the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo, which takes place next spring in Oklahoma City.

“I like representing the circuit in Oklahoma City,” Anderson said. “I would like to win it again and go back to Oklahoma City. I didn’t get to run Firebug this last year because he was hurt, but he runs really good in Oklahoma city. I was really hoping to win the circuit again and give us a chance to run at that deal again together.”

postheadericon LaValley, Bright move near the top in Lovington

Matt Bright of Azle, Texas, rides Carr Pro Rodeo's Island Girl for 87 points finish in a tie for second place in bareback riding at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

Matt Bright of Azle, Texas, rides Carr Pro Rodeo’s Island Girl for 87 points finish in a tie for second place in bareback riding at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

LOVINGTON, N.M. – Dusty LaValley and Matt Bright know the pressure of the brightest lights in ProRodeo.

Both bareback riders are two-time qualifiers to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, and they’ve experienced first-hand what it’s like to strap their hands to the backs of the best bucking horses while riding in the biggest spectacle of the sport.

Dusty LaValley of Grand Prairie, Alberta, rides Carr Pro Rodeo's Black Coffee for 87 points to finish in a second-place tie at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

Dusty LaValley of Grand Prairie, Alberta, rides Carr Pro Rodeo’s Black Coffee for 87 points to finish in a second-place tie at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

It came in handy during the final performance of the Lea County Fair and Rodeo on Saturday night. Each cowboy scored 87 points to share the No. 2 spot in bareback riding, two points behind reigning world champion Kaycee Feild, who scored the winning ride on Thursday night.

Bright matched moves with Carr Pro Rodeo’s Island Girl, while LaValley scored on Carr’s Black Coffee. They each earned $2,999 for their rides; in winning the rodeo, Feild collected $4,496.

“I’ve seen that horse go several times the last couple of years, and she looked like a nice little horse,” said Bright, 29, of Azle, Texas. “I thought she was one I could ride in the mid-80s and collect a solid check out off. It turns out that horse had a really good day with me and surprised me. About that second jump, I knew I was going to have to bear down a little more than I thought.

“It worked out, and we came together for a great ride.”

LaValley knew a little more about Black Coffee, an 11-year-old black mare that’s bucked at the NFR five times.

“I’d never been on her before, but I’ve seen her a lot,” said LaValley, 31, of Grand Prairie, Alberta. “I knew I had a good chance. She jumped out of the chute, and it felt great.

“She gives you just enough to really help you and get your feet moving fast. She’s got a little bit of drop to her; she’s just the perfect horse.”

That’s a key ingredient in riding bucking horses, which is judged on the 100-point scale; half the score comes from how well the animal bucks, and the other half comes from how well the cowboy rides. In the case of bareback riding, contestants are judged on how well they spur from a point above the front shoulders of the horse back to the rigging that binds the athletes together.

Of course, it also helps to have great bucking horses, which is one of the main reasons cowboys like coming to the Lea County Fair and Rodeo.

“This is a phenomenal rodeo, with Pete bringing all these great horses,” Bright said of Pete Carr, owner of Carr Pro Rodeo. “I’ve just been fortunate to draw good horses and do my job well when I get here.

“It’s a big arena, and the crowd was packed and into it. It was loud when I was making that ride. That helps make a better ride. When you can hear the crowd cheering like that, it makes you want to ride better.”

Winners were all-around champion Landon McClaugherty ($2,223 in steer roping and tie-down roping); Feild, 89 points to win bareback riding and $4,496; steer wrestler Kash Koester (8.5 seconds on two runs, $1,912); tie-down roper Scott Kormos (17.4 seconds on two, $3,341); saddle bronc rider Travis Sheets (85 points, $4,190); steer roper J.P. Wickett  (42.7 seconds, $2,975); team ropers Erich Rogers and Kory Koontz (8.8 seconds on two, $2,641); barrel racer Kaley Bass (17.14 seconds, $3,927); and bull rider Scottie Knapp (91 points, $4,361).

 

Lea County Fair and Rodeo
Lovington, N.M.
Aug. 8-11
All-around:
1. Landon McClaugherty, $2,223 steer roping and tie-down roping

Bareback riding leaders: 1. Kaycee Feild, 89 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal, $4,496; 2. (tie) Matt Bright and Dusty LaValley, 88, $2,997 each; 4. (tie) Caleb Bennett and Seth Hardwick, 86, $1,349 each; 6. (tie) J.R. Vezain, Justin McDaniel and Casey Colletti, 83, $599 each.

Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. Dean Gorsuch, 3.5 seconds, $1,912; 2. (tie) Kash Koester and Jacob Shofner, 4.0, $1,538 each; 4. Tommy Cook, 4.3, $1,164; 5. Shayde Etherton, 4.4, $914; 6. (tie) Ben Shofner and Josh Peek, 4.6, $540; 8. Hunter Cure, 4.7, $166. Second round leaders: 1. (tie) Riley Duvall and Christian Pettigrew, 4.1 seconds, $1,787 each; 3. Travis Carnine, 4.2, $1,413; 4. (tie) Tom Lewis, Beau Clark, Nick Guy and Aaron Vosler, 4.4, $790 each; 8. (tie) K.C. Jones, Kash Koester and Teddy Johnson, 4.5, $55 each. Average leaders: 1. Kash Koester, 8.5 seconds on two runs, $1,912; 2. (tie) Ben Shofner and Jacob Shofner, 9.4, $1,538 each; 4. (tie) K.C. Jones and Travis Carnine, 9.5, $1,039; 6. Shayde Etherton, 9.7, $665; 7. Bray Armes, 9.8, $416; 5. (tie) Josh Peek, Teddy Johnson and Aaron Vosler, 10.2, $55.

Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Thiel, 8.0 seconds, $2,227; 2. Clint Cooper, 8.2, $1,937; 3. Stetson Vest, 8.4, $1,646; 4. Ross Beasley, 8.5, $1,356; 5. Clif Cooper, 8.6, $1,065; 6. Shane Hanchey, 8.8, $775; 7. (tie) Sterling Smith and Matt Kenney, 9.1, $339 each. Second round leaders: 1. Cody Ohl, 7.8 seconds, $2,227; 2. Cody Owens, 8.0, $1,937; 3. Scott Kormos, 8.1, $1,646; 4. (tie) Ace Slone and Sterling Smith, 8.4, $1,210 each; 6. J.D. Kibbe, 8.5, $775; 7. Chris Demases, 8.6, $484; 8. Matt Kenney, 8.7, $194. Average leaders: 1. Scott Kormos, 17.4 seconds on two runs, $3,341; 2. Sterling Smith, 17.5, $2,905; 3. (tie) Matt Kenney and Ross Beasley, 17.8, $2,251 each; 5. Stetson Vest, 17.9, $1,598; 6. J.D. Kibbe, 19.1, $1,162; 7. Chris Demases, 19.3, $726; 8. Cody Owens, 19.8, $291.

Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. Travis Sheets, 85 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s True Lies, $4,190; 2. (tie) Troy Crowser and Chuck Schmidt, 8.4, $2,793 each; 4. J.J. Elshere, 83, $1,536; 5. (tie) Bradley Harter, Cody DeMoss and Curtis Garton, 81, $745 each; 8. (tie) Cody Taton and Cody Angland, 80, $209 each.

Steer roping: Third round leaders: 1. Bryce Davis, 10.5 seconds, $1,984; 2. Brent Lewis, 11.9, $1,642; 3. Scott Snedecor, 12.4, $1,300; 4. Cody Lee, 12.9, $958; 5 (tie) Rocky Patterson, Jim Davis and Buster Record Jr., 13.9, $319 each. Average leaders: 1. J.P. Wickett, 42.7 seconds on three runs, $2,975; 2. Brent Lewis, 44.4, $2,462; 3. Cody Lee, 47.8, $1,949; 4. Rod Hartness, 50.4, $1,436; 5. Landon McClaugherty, 26.2 on two, $923; 6. Scott Snedecor, 27.2, $513.

Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Brazile/Patrick Smith, 4.2 seconds, $1,761; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.5, $1,531; 3. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8, $1,301; 4. Nathan McWhorter/Twister Cain, $1,072; 5. Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, 5.3, $842; 6. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4, $612; 7. (tie) Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson and Manny Egusquiza Jr./Brad Culpepper, 5.5, $268 each. Second round leaders: 1. Travis Tryan/Jake Long, 4.2 seconds, $1,761; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.3, $1,531; 3. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 4.5, $1,301; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 4.7, $1,072; 5. (tie) Derrick Begay/Cesar de la Cruz, Josh Morris/Reagan Ward and Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8, $612; 8. Nathan McWhorter/Twister Cain, 5.1, $153. Average leaders: 1. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 8.8 seconds on two runs, $2,641; 2. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 10.1, $2,296; 3.Nathan McWhorter/Twister Cain, 10.3, $1,952; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 11.3, $1,607; 5. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 11.4, $1,263; 6. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 12.1, $919; 7. Josh Morris/Reagan Ward, 13.3, $574; 8. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 15.1, $230.

Barrel racing leaders: 1. Kaley Bass, 17.14 seconds, $3,927; 2. Jana Bean, 17.46, $3,141; 3. Shada Brazile, 17.64, $2,552; 4. Caren Lamb, 17.70, $1,963; 5. Gretchen Benbenek, 17.71, $1,571; 6. Savannah Reeves, 17.73, $1,178; 7. (tie) Kim Schulze and Fallon Taylor, 17.74, $933 each; 9. Megan Stock, 17.75, $785; 10. Shannon Tidwell, 17.78, $687; 11. Marisa Simpson, 17.80, $589; 12. Rebecca Hughes, 17.81, $491; 13. Cindy Smith, 17.82, $393; 14. Tara Timms, 17.87, $294; 15. Reagan Dillard, 17.88, $196.

Bull riding leaders: 1. Scottie Knapp, 91 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Wicked Game, $4,361; 2. Dalton Votaw, 89, $3,343; 3. (tie) Tyler Willis and Corey Navarre, 82, $2,035; 5. Shawn Coleman, 79, $1,018; 6. Trey Benton III, 78, $726; 7. Clayton Savage, 77, $581; 8. Jared Green, 75, $436.

postheadericon Presenting rodeo’s news

The past two weeks has been quite busy, and I’m very thankful for that. In fact, a check of the front page of ProRodeo.com reveals just how busy.

Of the top nine stories on the PRCA’s website, six of them are ones I produced. Really, it’s more of a tribute to the blessings that have allowed me to work such great events. Not only do I have the opportunity to work two Wrangler Million Dollar Tour rodeos in a row, but also I got to work my first Xtreme Bulls event in the process. I’m very honored.

 

postheadericon Top cowboys battle consistency in Lovington

Dean Gorsuch, a two-time world champion steer wrestler from Gering, Neb., grapples his animal during a 3.5-second run Friday afternoon at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo in Lovington, N.M. Though he was saddled with a 7.9-second run in the second round, he is still No. 1 in the opening go-round with one day of competition remaining. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

Dean Gorsuch, a two-time world champion steer wrestler from Gering, Neb., grapples his animal during a 3.5-second run Friday afternoon at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo in Lovington, N.M. Though he was saddled with a 7.9-second run in the second round, he is still No. 1 in the opening go-round with one day of competition remaining. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

LOVINGTON, N.M. – To be the very best in the world, it takes talent, luck and a lot of consistency.

Still, ProRodeo’s brightest stars don’t always shine, and the elite cowboys in the game sometimes struggle being consistent. That happened Friday during the Lea County Fair and Rodeo with Clint Cooper and Dean Gorsuch.

Clint Cooper

Clint Cooper

Cooper, a four-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier who graduated from Lovington High School, sits second in the first round of tie-down roping after his 8.2-second run on Friday afternoon. He had a no-time during his second-round run in the performance.

“It’s awesome to be here,” Cooper said. “I failed to catch my second one, and that would’ve been really good for the average.

“But it’s good to come to the hometown, see my family, my friends, my loved ones and a lot of people who help me out around here.”

Gorsuch, a two-time world champion steer wrestler from Gering, Neb., leads the first round after a 3.5 in the afternoon. He struggled Friday evening, though, with a 7.9-second run, which also took him out of the average.

Dean Gorsuch

Dean Gorsuch

“You think of your run before you go, and you envision it the way you think it’s going to happen,” Gorsuch said. “I just felt like I was going to catch that steer a little quicker, and I got off early. It all kind of happen because I didn’t ride up there and get a good head catch.”

Mistakes happen, but the very best in the game do the things to rebound from them.

“It’s going to make you frustrated if you don’t win at the level we’re at,” Cooper said. “I just say a little prayer and go on with it. It’s a big deal in one way, but then another it’s not.

“I’ll just keep my head up and try to stay positive.”

Sometimes that’s half the battle. Not only does the money won pay bills, it’s how championship points are tabulated. Only the top 15 on the money list in each event at the conclusion of the regular season qualify for the NFR, the season-ending championship. When the finals are tabulated, the contestants with the most money won in each event are crowned world champions.

“I’d like to say my second run wasn’t my fault, but I felt like I could’ve placed on that steer in the round,” Gorsuch said. “Sometimes things happen. Sometimes you overthink things.

“I needed to make a better run; that was an opportunity to win this rodeo.”

Lea County Fair and Rodeo
Lovington, N.M.
Aug. 8-11
Bareback riding leaders:
1. Kaycee Feild, 89 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal; 2. (tie) Caleb Bennett and Seth Hardwick, 86; 4. (tie) J.R. Vezain, Justin McDaniel and Casey Colletti, 83; 7. (tie) Will Lowe and Caine Riddle, 81.

Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. Dean Gorsuch, 3.5 seconds; 2. (tie) Kash Koester and Jacob Shofner, 4.0; 4. Shayde Etherton, 4.4; 5. (tie) Ben Shofner and Josh Peek, 4.6; 7. Hunter Cure, 4.7; 8. (tie) Riley York, Bray Armes and K.C. Jones, 5.0. Second round leaders: 1. (tie) Riley Duvall and Christian Pettigrew, 4.1 seconds; 3. (tie) Tom Lewis and Aaron Vosler, 4.4; 5. (tie) K.C. Jones, Kash Koester and Teddy Johnson, 4.5; 8. (tie) Stockton Graves and Matt Reeves, 4.6. Average leaders: 1. Kash Koester, 8.5 seconds on two runs; 2. (tie) Ben Shofner and Jacob Shofner, 9.4; 4. K.C. Jones, 9.5; 5. Shayde Etherton, 9.7; 6. Bray Armes, 9.8; 7. (tie) Josh Peek, Teddy Johnson and Aaron Vosler, 10.2.

Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Thiel, 8.0 seconds; 2. Clint Cooper, 8.2; 3. Stetson Vest, 8.4; 4. Ross Beasley, 8.5; 5. Clif Cooper, 8.6; 6. Shane Hanchey, 8.8; 7. (tie) Sterling Smith and Matt Kenney, 9.1. Second round leaders: 1. Cody Ohl, 7.8 seconds; 2. Cody Owens, 8.0; 3. Scott Kormos, 8.1; 4. Sterling Smith, 8.4; 5. J.D. Kibbe, 8.5; 6. Chris Demases, 8.6; 7. Matt Kenney, 8.7; 8. Reese Riemer, 8.8. Average leaders: 1. Scott Kormos, 17.4 seconds on two runs; 2. Sterling Smith, 17.5; 3. (tie) Matt Kenney and Ross Beasley, 17.8; 5. Stetson Vest, 17.9; 6. J.D. Kibbe, 19.1; 7. Chris Demases, 19.3; 8. Cody Owens, 19.8.

Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. Travis Sheets, 85 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s True Lies; 2. (tie) Troy Crowser and Chuck Schmidt, 8.4; 4. J.J. Elshere, 83; 5. (tie) Bradley Harter, Cody DeMoss and Curtis Garton, 81; 8. (tie) Sterling Crawley and Jesse Kruse, 78.

Steer roping: Third round leaders: 1. Bryce Davis, 10.5 seconds; 2. Brent Lewis, 11.9; 3. Scott Snedecor, 12.4; 4. Cody Lee, 12.9; 5 (tie) Rocky Patterson, Jim Davis and Buster Record Jr., 13.9. Average leaders: 1. J.P. Wickett, 42.7 seconds on three runs; 2. Brent Lewis, 44.4; 3. Cody Lee, 47.8; 4. Rod Hartness, 50.4; 5. Landon McClaugherty, 26.2 on two; 6. Scott Snedecor, 27.2.

Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Brazile/Patrick Smith, 4.2 seconds; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.5; 3. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8; 4. Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, 5.3; 5. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4; 6. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 5.5; 7. Manny Egusquiza Jr./Brad Culpepper, 5.5; 8. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 5.6. Second round leaders: 1. Travis Tryan/Jake Long, 4.2 seconds; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.3; 3. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 4.5; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 4.7; 5. (tie) Derrick Begay/Cesar de la Cruz and Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8; 7. (tie) Arky Rogers/Cory Petska and Blaine Linaweaver/Matt Garza, 5.2. Average leaders: 1. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 8.8 seconds on two runs; 2. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 10.1; 3. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 10.1; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 11.3; 5. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 11.4; 6. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 12.1; 7. Billy Stephens/Justin Hendrick, 15.8; 8. Tom RichardsNick Sarchett, 15.9.

Barrel racing leaders: 1. Kaley Bass, 17.14 seconds; 2. Jana Bean, 17.46; 3. Shada Brazile, 17.64; 4. Caren Lamb, 17.70; 5. Gretchen Benbenek, 17.71; 6. (tie) Savannah Reeves, 17.73; 7. (tie) Kim Schulze and Fallon Taylor, 17.74; 9. Megan Stock, 17.75; 10. Shannon Tidwell, 17.78; 11. Marisa Simpson, 17.80; 12. Rebecca Hughes, 17.81; 13. Cindy Smith, 17.82; 14. Reagan Dillard, 17.88.

Bull riding leaders: 1. Scottie Knapp, 91 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Wicket Game; 2. Dalton Votaw, 89; 3. Tyler Willis, 82; 4. Shawn Coleman, 79; 5. Clayton Savage, 77; 6. Clayton Savage, 77; Jared Green, 75; 8. Friday Wright III, 60.

postheadericon Real Deal helps keep Feild toward the top

Kaycee Feild rides Carr Pro Rodeo's Real Deal for 89 points on Thursday night to take the lead at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

Kaycee Feild rides Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal for 89 points on Thursday night to take the lead at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo. (ROBBY FREEMAN PHOTO)

LOVINGTON, N.M. – Since Dec. 1, 2011, Kaycee Feild has won more than $400,000 on the backs of bucking horses.

On Thursday night, he assured himself even more by testing his world championship spur stroke against the nasty moves of a world championship beast, Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal. It worked out for 89 points to take the lead at the Lea County Fair and Rodeo.

“I knew that horse had a different move around the post (of the chute), but I wasn’t expecting it four times,” Feild said of how many times the powerful 12-year-old bay gelding changed leads during the eight-second ride. “It sure was fun. I really couldn’t just sit down the first two or three jumps. It took me that long to extend my spur stroke.”

It’s one of the best bareback riding spur strokes going down the rodeo trail today. Feild won the 2011 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, scoring a record 860 points through the 10-round slugfest in Las Vegas. That propelled him to his first world championship.

Since then, he has won some of the most prestigious events in the sport, including ProRodeo wins in Fort Worth, Texas.

But that’s nothing to the day he experienced just nine days ago, when he celebrated his wedding to his new bride, Stephanie. In fact, Thursday’s ride was just his second one since the July 31 nuptials.

“I’ve been dating her for two years,” said Feild, 25, a four-time NFR qualifier from Payson, Utah, whose father, Lewis, is a five-time world champion. “She’s been around my family. She understands my job is to go to every rodeo I can and to put every loving minute into riding bucking horses.

“In order to be the best, you’ve got to practice to be the best, and she understands that. She loves me whether I do good or do bad, and that’s a good feeling to go home to.”

It took Feild five years of competing in ProRodeo to win his first gold buckle. Now he’s got to do everything it takes to defend that title.

“I’m friends with a lot of world champions, and they say the first one isn’t the easiest to get but that the second one is harder to get,” he said. “That’s my goal. My goal was to win a gold buckle and to dominate in Vegas.

“I didn’t have my goals written down for like a month and a half, and it was showing. Staying at home for 10 days lit a fire under me, and I’m ready to go.”

Of course, it helps that a lot when he gets to ride one of the best horses in rodeo. Real Deal was named the 2005 Bareback Horse of the Year, and he looks as powerful as ever.

“That’s what I crave,” Feild said. “That’s what I ride bucking horses for is to get on the rankest, baddest horses. I can prove, not only to my friends but also to myself, that I can spur anything and that I can spur the bad ones.

“It’s definitely a confidence booster when you can get on a bad one and spur him every jump.”

Lea County Fair and Rodeo
Lovington, N.M.
Aug. 8-11
Bareback riding leaders:
1. Kaycee Feild, 89 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Real Deal; 2. (tie) Caleb Bennett and Seth Hardwick, 86; 4. (tie) J.R. Vezain, Justin McDaniel and Casey Colletti, 83; 7. (tie) Will Lowe and Caine Riddle, 81.

Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. (tie) Kash Koester and Jacob Shofner, 4.0 seconds; 3. Shayde Etherton, 4.4; 4. Ben Shofner, 4.6; 5. (tie) Riley York and K.C. Jones, 5.0; 7. Monty Eakin, 5.2; 8. Justin Smith, 5.6. Second round leaders: 1. Riley Duvall, 4.1 seconds; 2. (tie) Tom Lewis and Aaron Vosler, 4.4; 4. (tie) K.C. Jones, Kash Koester and Teddy Johnson, 4.5; 7. Stockton Graves, 4.6; 8. Ben Shofner, 4.8. Average leaders: 1. Kash Koester, 8.5 seconds on two runs; 2. (tie) Ben Shofner and Jacob Shofner, 9.4; 4. K.C. Jones, 9.5; 5. Shayde Etherton, 9.7; 6. (tie) Teddy Johnson and Aaron Vosler, 10.2; 8. Riley York, 10.5.

Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Thiel, 8.0 seconds; 2. Stetson Vest, 8.4; 3. Ross Beasley, 8.5; 4. Shane Hanchey, 8.8; 5. (tie) Sterling Smith and Matt Kenney, 9.1; 7. (tie) Beau Marshall and Russell Cardoza, 9.2; 7. Scott Kormos, 9.3; 8. Cimarron Boardman, 9.5. Second round leaders: 1. Cody Ohl, 7.8 seconds; 2. Cody Owens, 8.0; 3. Scott Kormos, 8.1; 4. Sterling Smith, 8.4; 5. J.D. Kibbe, 8.5; 6. Chris Demases, 8.6; 7. Matt Kenney, 8.7; 8. Reese Riemer, 8.8. Average leaders: 1. Scott Kormos, 17.4 seconds on two runs; 2. Sterling Smith, 17.5; 3. (tie) Matt Kenney and Ross Beasley, 17.8; 5. Stetson Vest, 17.9; 6. J.D. Kibbe, 19.1; 7. Chris Demases, 19.3; 8. Cody Owens, 19.8.

Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. Travis Sheets, 85 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s True Lies; 2. (tie) Troy Crowser and Chuck Schmidt, 8.4; 4. J.J. Elshere, 83; 5. Bradley Harter, 81; 6. Sterling Crawley, 78; 7. Cody Martin, 77; 8. Robert Aragon, 75.

Steer roping: Third round leaders: 1. Bryce Davis, 10.5 seconds; 2. Brent Lewis, 11.9; 3. Scott Snedecor, 12.4; 4. Cody Lee, 12.9; 5 (tie) Rocky Patterson, Jim Davis and Buster Record Jr., 13.9. Average leaders: 1. J.P. Wickett, 42.7 seconds on three runs; 2. Brent Lewis, 44.4; 3. Cody Lee, 47.8; 4. Rod Hartness, 50.4; 5. Landon McClaugherty, 26.2 on two; 6. Scott Snedecor, 27.2.

Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Trevor Brazile/Patrick Smith, 4.2 seconds; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.5; 3. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8; 4. Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, 5.3; 5. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4; 6. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 5.5; 7. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 5.6; 8. Billy Stephens/Justin Hendrick, 6.1. Second round leaders: 1. Travis Tryan/Jake Long, 4.2 seconds; 2. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 4.3; 3. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 4.5; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 4.7; 5. (tie) Derrick Begay/Cesar de la Cruz and Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 4.8; 7. (tie) Arky Rogers/Cory Petska and Blaine Linaweaver/Matt Garza, 5.2. Average leaders: 1. Erich Rogers/Kory Koontz, 8.8 seconds on two runs; 2. Nick Sartain/Kollin VonAhn, 10.1; 3. Kaleb Driggers/Jade Corkill, 10.1; 4. Chad Masters/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 11.3; 5. Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 11.4; 6. Nate Singletary/Tom Bill Johnson, 12.1; 7. Billy Stephens/Justin Hendrick, 15.8; 8. Tom RichardsNick Sarchett, 15.9.

Barrel racing leaders: 1. Kaley Bass, 17.14 seconds; 2. Shada Brazile, 17.64; 3. Caren Lamb, 17.70; 4. Gretchen Benbenek, 17.71; 5. (tie) Savannah Reeves, 17.73; 6. (tie) Kim Schulze and Fallon Taylor, 17.74; 8. Megan Stock, 17.75; 9. Shannon Tidwell, 17.78; 10. Marisa Simpson, 17.80; 11. Rebecca Hughes, 17.81; 12. Cindy Smith, 17.82; 13. Sally Young, 17.87; 14. (tie) Kelsi Walraven and Sarah Kieckhefer, 17.89.

Bull riding leaders: 1. Scottie Knapp, 91 points on Carr Pro Rodeo’s Wicket Game; 2. Dalton Votaw, 89; 3. Shawn Coleman, 79; 4. Clayton Savage, 77; 5. Friday Wright III, 60; no other qualified rides.

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