DANIEL GREEN, Oakdale, Calif.
Daniel Green’s third Timed Event Championship of the World title was quite emotional for the California cowboy last March.
Green clinched gold buckle No. 3 with a gritty performance inside this amazing arena. He utilized his vast experience to overcome all the obstacles that came before him. In this unique, rugged slugfest, it takes something special to dig deep into the soul to pull off the championship. In all, the 41-year-old cowboy earned $52,000.
The first time Green claimed the Timed Event title was 2002. He followed it with another strong showing and the 2008 championship. But those are not the only times he’s shown success. Green, a 10-time qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, is a two-time winner of another Lazy E original, the World’s Greatest Roper. Nearly every time he leaves the Lazy E Arena, he’s holding a big paycheck.
Odds are he’ll do it again this year. Green has proven he’s a strong contender for the $50,000 first-place prize. You have the hottest ticket in Western sports, so you will know for sure when the smoke clears at the end of this magical weekend.
PAUL DAVID TIERNEY, Oral, S.D.
The lessons of a ProRodeo legend have been passed on to the next generation.
Proof comes in the form of Paul David Tierney, the youngest son of Paul Tierney, a ProRodeo Hall of Fame cowboy who owns four Timed Event Championship of the World titles. Last year, Paul David Tierney raced through the 25-head event in a cumulative time of 343.9 seconds to finish as the reserve champion.
In fact, the $25,000 he earned inside this arena last March marked the highest payday of his young career. He had joined older brother Jess as top finishers in the championship; Jess placed fifth a year ago.
After his solid run inside the Lazy E last March, Paul David made a solid run through ProRodeo. He won 16 event titles in 2013, eight of which were all-around crowns. In fact, he won both the all-around and heading championships at the Ram Badlands Circuit Finals Rodeo.
The latter means as a header, Paul David Tierney will return to the Lazy E in a month to compete with Jared Bilby during the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo. Most importantly, it’s further proof championship genetics continue to be a big part of the Tierney family.
K.C. JONES, Burlington, Wyo.
When K.C. Jones walks inside this hallowed hall, he feels at home. Of course, a five-time winner of this marvelous championship, it should feel like home.
Jones is one of just two men in the 29 years of this magnificent competition to have won at least five gold buckles in the Ironman of ProRodeo. The first time was 21 years ago, before the gray hair swept across head. He added Timed Event Championship of the World titles in 1996, 1999, 2001 and 2012.
This weekend’s festivities fit right into Jones’ wheelhouse. He can do all the events well, and 20-plus years of experience give him a distinct advantage when he backs into the box. Of course, he qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in two events, tie-down roping and team roping.
That was in 1991. The paychecks of that type are fewer than the early 1990s, but when he cashes checks, they’re pretty big. The last time he won this championship two seasons ago, he left with $57,000. A year ago, he placed fourth in the average and pocketed $10,000.
He knows what it takes to win, especially inside the fabulous Lazy E Arena. This three-day competition will be an interesting journey just to see what Jones has in store for 2014.
JESS TIERNEY, Hermosa, S.D.
The last time Jess Tierney played inside the Lazy E Arena, he fared very well.
The second-generation cowboy – whose father, Paul, is a ProRodeo Hall of Famer who owns four Timed Event Championship of the World titles – pocketed $22,616 while competing last November in the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping.
A three-time qualifier to that championship, Tierney won the ninth round and placed in four others. He finished 10th in the 2013 steer roping world standings. In all, he had quite a bit of success in central Oklahoma last season, including a fifth-place finish in both the average and fastest-round competition. In all, he left last year’s Timed Event with $10,500.
He’s ready to collect more this March. With a powerful pedigree coming from a World Champion father, Jess Tierney comes packed with a great understanding of what it takes to win at this level. He and his younger brother, Paul David, both placed among the top five at last year’s Timed Event, so they know it takes more than genetics to excel.
Jess Tierney is expecting big things to happen during this year’s championship. He’s proven he has the talent, and we know it’s just part of his legacy.
RUSSELL CARDOZA, Terrebonne, Ore.
Russell Cardoza has learned the Timed Event Championship’s true challenge lies between the ears of each of the contestants.
It’s easy to get down when things don’t go one’s way, but there’s not much time to dwell on it. Last March, Cardoza was steady through the first 19 runs, then he suffered his first 60-second run during steer roping in the fourth go-round; that was his only 60 of the competition, so he bounced back quite nicely on the final day.
When the dust settled, he finished sixth in the average and pocketed $5,000. It just wasn’t what he had hoped, especially after a runner-up finish in the 2012 Timed Event. But he’s back in the field again, and he’ll use every experience as he competes this weekend.
Cardoza is a three-time heeling qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, but last year he found success in multiple events. He finished the 2013 ProRodeo campaign with eight titles, five of which were for the all-around. In Chaney, Wash., Cardoza won the all-around, tie-down roping and team roping titles (with C.R. Wilken).
Now in his fifth year of competing in the “Ironman of ProRodeo,” Cardoza is ready to walk away from this arena with one of the most prestigious titles in the game. That’s why he’s here.
TRELL ETBAUER, Gruver, Texas
Just hearing the name Etbauer conjures up visions of tremendous cowboys and championship buckles.
Trell Etbauer is the next generation. Etbauer’s father, Robert, and two uncles, Billy and Dan, are saddle bronc riding legends, but 29-year-old Trell is making quite a mark himself. Over the course of his young career, Trell Etbauer has earned the Linderman Award four times for excelling in both timed and roughstock events.
Competing primarily in tie-down roping, steer wrestling and saddle bronc riding – where his dad (2) and uncle Billy (5) own multiple gold buckles – Trell is one of the top all-around cowboys in the sport. In 2008, the year in which he clinched his first Linderman Award, he was named the PRCA Resistol All-Around Rookie of the Year.
In his first appearance at the Timed Event Championship last March, the young Etbauer was in great position to walk away with the title, sitting second through four go-rounds. Though the “Ironman of ProRodeo” bug bit on the final day, he finished seventh in the average and earned $4,500.
What can you expect out of Year No. 2? Whatever happens, it certainly will be magical.
ERICH ROGERS, Round Rock, Ariz.
The taste Erich Rogers got at the Timed Event Championship last March must have been pretty good.
Rogers finished the 2013 “Ironman of ProRodeo” eighth in the average and pocketed $3,000. He definitely was in the hunt for one of the most prestigious, yet elusive, championships in the game.
For those who know the game, we’ve learned a lot about Rogers based on his experience inside this wonderful arena. A header by trade, he has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo each of the last three seasons. But he’s quite the hand and has done some amazing things in multiple events.
In fact, Rogers is considered an amazing pickup man, where so many of his roping and livestock talents come into play. Last season, he won eight titles at ProRodeos across this land, including the all-around and heading titles in Payson, Ariz.
When it’s time to go to work inside the Lazy E this weekend, look for Rogers to do his part to keep everything exciting.
JOJO LeMOND, Andrews, Texas
There’s just something special about JoJo LeMond.
Maybe it’s his west Texas personality. Maybe it’s a brilliant smile that shines under a wide brimmed hat. Maybe it’s that he’s a talented cowboy that likes to go fast.
When it all comes together inside the Lazy E Arena, LeMond is definitely a fan favorite in the “Ironman of ProRodeo.” He holds the record for the fastest heading run at the Timed Event Championship of the world, a 4.5-second run he posted in 2010. He had the heeling record until last season, when two-time reigning world champion Jade Corkill claimed it.
Above all else, LeMond is a true cowboy. He doesn’t just overcome obstacles in his path, he blasts through them. Last March inside this magnificent rodeo palace, the Andrews, Texas, hand put on a tremendous show and was in the thick of the championship until the midway point of the competition.
In 2013, he also qualified for the first time to the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping, where he put on another show. LeMond finished third in the average and pocked more than $21,500 in the process.
He’s proven himself in this arena. This might be the weekend to make a statement.
JOSH PEEK, Pueblo, Colo.
It’s been four years since Josh Peek drove away from the Lazy E Arena with the title from the Timed Event Championship of the World.
He’s ready to win this prestigious title again, and he owns all the tools it takes to stake claim to the $50,000 first-place check. Since he became a member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association a dozen seasons ago, he’s been near the top of the leaderboard in the all-around standings.
In fact, the Colorado cowboy won the all-around title during the 2009 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, where he is a six-time qualifier; he earned the right to play in Las Vegas starting in 2007, competing in tie-down roping and steer wrestling. He roped calves at the NFR three straight years, and he wrestled steers in 2007, ’09 and ’10.
Throw in the other timed-even disciplines, and he’s still pretty salty. In his years competing at this event, Peek has earned $102,000. And when it comes down to it, he’s just plain good at about anything he does. That’s why he won 10 all-around titles in 2013 and finished 11th in the all-around world standings.
This is a chance for him to prove among the very best that he can be a multiple Timed Event champ; it should be fun to watch him chase it.
CLAY SMITH, Broken Bow, Okla.
The pressure of Clay Smith’s first Timed Event Championship of the World had to be incredible. A late injury replacement to the exclusive field, the young cowboy from the extreme corner of southeastern Oklahoma arrived at the Lazy E Arena with a focused demeanor and a boatload of talent.
His stomach had to have been in knots. Smith was in the beginning stages of his rookie season in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association, and he got the call to play on one of the biggest stages in the game in the most unique and rugged event there is for timed-event cowboys.
But when the barrier line released, those jitters must have been gone, because Clay Smith held his own against an elite group of professional cowboys. The more runs he made, the more comfortable Smith got.
In fact, he posted a 50.1-second round on the final day to finish fourth in the fastest-rounds portion of the contest, pocketing $4,000. He earned more money than half the field, which is quite a statement for any first-timer to this challenging championship.
Clay Smith returns to this year’s Timed Event as a 22-year-old who got some amazing experience last March. He’s worked on his weaknesses and built on his strengths, so expect some good things to come from him this weekend.
CLAYTON HASS, Terrell, Texas
Nobody understands the true test that comes with competing in the Timed Event Championship of the World any better than Clayton Hass.
The Texas cowboy has so many tools that make him a favorite, but it just hasn’t worked out the way he had hoped. You see, this unique event has so many variables that can stand in the way of even the very best. With each passing year comes greater experience, so expect to see something big out of Hass this weekend.
He is listed as a tie-down roper, team roper and steer wrestler, but Clayton Hass is much more. He’s a true cowboy, and it’s that talent that has him returning to the “Ironman of ProRodeo each spring. It takes a good hand to train horses, then to use them the way they like to work. That’s Hass.
Last season, he won eight rodeo titles, four of which were in the all-around. At the Texas Stampede in Allen, Texas, he roped with Ryan Motes to win the team roping championship, then parlayed that into the all-around crown, too. He won in the mountains of Wyoming and Utah and along the southern tip of Texas.
He has earned the right to compete in this fabulous arena again this weekend. Now he wants to show you just how special he can be when the latch breaks and the cattle scurry onto the playing field.
DUSTIN BIRD, Cut Bank, Mont.
Dustin Bird has done some incredible things over the course of his career.
His showing at the 2013 Timed Event Championship of the World is the perfect showcase of that. Through three go-rounds of this amazingly tough competition, the Montana cowboy was sitting in the No. 2 position and just a couple of seconds behind the leader. Heading into the final day, Bird was in the top five.
Oh, and don’t forget this tidbit: That was Bird’s inaugural visit to the championship. How’s that for talented and gutsy?
Bird is the 2012 Canadian heading champion who has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo each of the past two seasons. This past December, he and partner Paul Eaves shared the seventh-round victory and placed on two other nights in Las Vegas. Bird has earned nearly $60,000 in Vegas money.
This weekend, he hopes to corral a nice Lazy E paycheck. He realizes there are plenty of challenges facing him, but he has the experiences that can help him to the prestigious buckle: He’s a three-time all-around champion at the Indian National Finals Rodeo.
As Justin McKee dubbed him a year ago, Dustin Bird is the roping sensation from the Blackfoot Nation; he’s ready to show it.
KYLE LOCKETT, Visalia, Calif.
Let’s face reality: Kyle Lockett wasn’t all that impressed with his run at the 2013 Timed Event Championship of the World.
The California cowboy scored a nice consolation prize of $6,000 for finishing runner-up in the fastest-round portion of the contest, a 46.5-second third go-round. But he finished 12th in the all-important average. That’s pretty hard on someone who expects better.
It’s harder on a man like Lockett, who has won this prestigious title twice before, in 2005 and ’11. He’s one of just four former champs in this year’s field and one of four who have won this title multiple times. Lockett understands better than most in this elite field what it takes to come through the “Ironman of ProRodeo” unscathed.
In his years competing in this arena, Lockett has earned $217,500. When you let that soak in, you realize that he has averaged a nice paycheck nearly every time he’s nodded his head on the south end of the Lazy E Arena.
What might be more impressive than his two gold buckles are the number of times he’s finished as the runner-up.
A seven-time qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, Lockett is a big name in this big-time championship. He hopes that his legacy just continues to grow.
MIKE OUTHIER, Utopia, Texas
From the time he was a young cowboy, people in western Oklahoma knew there was something special and a little quirky about Mike Outhier.
He could rope with the best in the game, and he could ride better than most. In the mid-1990s, he competed in all six boys’ events at the International Youth Finals Rodeo in Shawnee, Okla.: tie-down roping, steer wrestling, team roping, bareback riding, saddle bronc riding and bull riding. He easily won the all-around every year there.
In 1998 at 21 years of age, the Weatherford, Okla.-raised cowboy was named the PRCA Resistol Saddle Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year. He qualified in bronc riding for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo four straight season beginning in 2001. But he always was a true all-around cowboy, and he earned the Linderman Award in 2004 and ’07. He and Trell Etbauer are the first Linderman winners ever to compete in the Timed Event, and this is their second straight year in the field.
These days, though, Outhier makes his home in Utopia, Texas, and makes his living with a rope. He’s pretty good at it, too. He has the talent and the horsepower to make a strong showing in the “Ironman of ProRodeo,” and he’ll definitely make things interesting this weekend.
LANDON McCLAUGHERTY, Tilden, Texas
Landon McClaugherty was THIS close to making a big-time run at the most prestigious prize in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association: The all-around world championship.
A year ago at this time, the Texas roper was at or near the top of the heading world standings. He fell off a little to close out the season, but still finished the year 25th on the money list, just 10 spots away from making the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. He also finished the season No. 19, barely missing out on his third qualification to the Clem McSpadden National Finals Rodeo.
What it reveals is a capacity and holding the necessary tools to make a run at this prestigious title. This weekend marks the fourth time McClaugherty has competed in the Timed Event Championship of the World, and all that experience should prove to be beneficial each time he backs into the roping box.
He needs to carry some of his 2013 momentum with him into this weekend. He finished the season 11th in the all-around standings, and over the course of the campaign, he earned 18 rodeo titles, 12 of which were in the all-around. In Lamar, Colo., he also added the team roping and tie-down roping crowns. He won steer roping in Amarillo, Texas, so the only discipline he didn’t win a title last season was steer wrestling.
That’s all the proof you need to realize just how talented the Texan is. Now McClaugherty wants to put this title on his resume, too.
SPENCER MITCHELL, Colusa, Calif.
All you had to do was watch the grimace on Spencer Mitchell’s face and the limp in his step to know how grueling the Timed Event Championship of the World can be.
Funny thing was, through all those struggles and the experience of pain, Mitchell was wearing a brilliant smile; the California cowboy was having a blast. That is an amazing statement for what a special championship this event is.
This weekend marks just the second time Mitchell has competed in the “Ironman of ProRodeo,” and he has high hopes for his sophomore campaign. He should, of course, because he’s that talented. He’s a two-time heading qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, roping in 2011 with the late Broc Cresta, then following that a year later with Dakota Kirchenschlager. He finished 2013 in the No. 21 position, so he remains one of the best in the business.
Mitchell has been around rodeo all his life and is the third generation of his family to compete in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. He is a winner at all levels, and two springs ago, he earned the team roping title at the Ram National Circuit Finals Rodeo while competing with Brady Minor.
Mitchell knows the tests that will come his way in this arena this weekend, and he’s ready for them. He’s ready to shine.
BRYCE DAVIS, Abilene, Texas
If familiarity breeds contentment, Bryce Davis is in the right place at the right time.
Davis is a four-time qualifier to the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping, having played the championship game inside this fabulous arena in 2009-11 and 2013. In fact, he won the prestigious average championship the first year he qualified.
But it wasn’t the first time Davis had played inside the Lazy E Arena. After all, he spent a portion of his childhood in this storied building watching his father compete: Jim Davis won Steer Roping World Championships in 1985-85. But Bryce Davis is more than the son of a world champ. He’s a winner.
He’s won go-rounds at the NFSR and owns the arena record at the Ram National Finals Steer Roping in Torrington, Wyo., where he roped and tied a steer in 9.1 seconds.
How will he do this weekend? He will learn quickly all the variables that go into the “Ironman of ProRodeo,” and he will adjust. That’s when the true competitor comes out in the Texas cowboy, and that’s when magic happens.
Look for Davis to make quite a statement over the five go-rounds of this rugged test. It’s who he is. It’s what he does.
DAKOTA ELDRIDGE, Elko, Nev.
In 2013, Dakota Eldridge burst onto the national rodeo scene as one of the top 15 bulldoggers in the world, earning the Nevada cowboy his first qualification to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
But those who are closest to him know Eldridge is more than a steer wrestler. Yes, Dakota Eldridge is a true all-around cowboy, who can win any title on any day. While competing in the Nevada High School Rodeo Association, he collected three all-around, two steer wrestling and one tie-down roping championships. He also was a two-time qualifier to the College National Finals Rodeo.
In 2011, while still competing on his PRCA permit, Eldridge won the all-around championship at the Ram Columbia River Circuit Finals Rodeo. The next year, he was the 2012 Resistol All-Around and Steer Wrestling Rookie of the Year.
The 22-year-old Nevadan put on a show in Las Vegas last December, winning the second round and placing in four others. He placed second in the average and earned more than $91,000 at the NFR. He moved from 15th to fifth in the final world standings.
It’s that type of competition that brings out the best in true champions. Eldridge is one of 20 of the greatest timed-event cowboys in the world, and he gets to show the world this weekend.
CODY DOESCHER, Oklahoma City
Cody Doescher is a pretty good pool player, but he’s a great cowboy.
This weekend marks his inaugural run at one of the most prestigious and storied competitions in rodeo, the Timed Event Championship of the World. Oh, and it happens to take place in the Fabulous Lazy E Arena, just a few miles from his Oklahoma City home.
Yeah, that’s a distinctive home-field advantage for the 2008 Moore High School graduate.
It’s here in the Sooner State that Doescher got his start and excelled at a young age. He won the National Junior Team Roping Championship in 2006 and earned two Oklahoma High School Rodeo Association team roping titles in 2007-08.
But the 23-year-old is more than a heeler. Oh, sure, he’s a regular among the top 50 in the world standings, but he also has been on the winning side of the equation in bulldogging, too. That helps set up the young cowboy quite well for this particular contest, where team ropers oftentimes struggle in steer wrestling.
Winners win, no matter the competition. That might mean as much to Doescher as that home-field advantage.
SHANK EDWARDS, Tatum, N.M.
Southeastern New Mexico is home of rugged terrain, and it takes quite a talented cowboy to handle the challenges that come with it.
That’s an outstanding indication of the ability Shank Edwards possesses. A tie-down roper and team roper, Edwards can do it all pretty well. In fact, he learned fundamentals from his grandfather, F.L. Hillhouse, a steer roper.
Here’s something else: Edwards began competing at 4 years of age, so he’s been at this game for 26 years. That’s pretty remarkable. He also has won some of the most prestigious rodeos in the game, from Hermiston, Ore., to Window Rock, Ariz., to Redding, Calif. In fact, he’s finished in the top 50 more than once, finishing as high as 21st in 2012.
What will he do inside the Lazy E Arena during his inaugural run at the Timed Event Championship of the World? It should be fun to see.