Archive for July, 2017

postheadericon Wilson hangs up, on to the lead

Kash Wilson rides Three Hills Rodeo's Big Show for 86 points Thursday night to take the lead at the Cattlemen's Days PRCA Rodeo in Gunnison, Colo.

Kash Wilson rides Three Hills Rodeo’s Big Show for 86 points Thursday night to take the lead at the Cattlemen’s Days PRCA Rodeo in Gunnison, Colo.

GUNNISON, Colo. – Kash Wilson saw the good, the bad and the ugly all in a matter of 10 seconds Thursday during opening night of the Cattlemen’s Day Rodeo.

Atop Three Hills Rodeo’s Big Show, Wilson made a quality ride, resulting in 86 points to take the bareback riding lead. But just a second after the buzzer sounded, the Gooding, Idaho, cowboy came off the big bay horse on the left side with his right hand still stuck in the rigging.

“I was getting off my rigging since I was getting behind him because of his power,” he said, explaining how his spurring rhythm with the horse’s bucking motion was compromised. “By the time the whistle went, he already had me on the left side.

Shortly after the buzzer, Wilson came off Big Show on the left side while his right riding hand remained wedged into the rigging. Wilson was hung up on the big bay for several seconds before he freed himself.

Shortly after the buzzer, Wilson came off Big Show on the left side while his right riding hand remained wedged into the rigging. Wilson was hung up on the big bay for several seconds before he freed himself.

“I could’ve safety’d up a little bit and prevented that, but I could have lost some points there at the end.”

Every point is vital, especially for cowboys who make their living on the backs of bucking horses. Each score is based on a 100-point scale, with half coming from the rider and half from the horse. In bareback riding, the spurring motion is from in front of the horse’s shoulders back to the rigging, then back to the front before the animal’s front feet hit the ground.

By being a little behind, Wilson was just trying to finish the ride as strong as he could.

“I’m here for the paycheck,” he said.

He should. He sits 39th in the world standings and has a lot of ground to make up if he wants to qualify for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the sport’s grand finale that takes only the top 15 contestants in each event at the conclusion of the regular season.

There are no guarantees in rodeo. Contestants must pay a fee in order to compete, and only the top few who finish with the best scores or times earn money. That’s why it’s important to perform well when the opportunities allow, which is what happened with Big Show.

“My traveling partner, Clayton Biglow, had that horse in the eight-man round in Houston earlier this year,” Wilson said of Big Show. “He said he was a good horse, an honest horse, but that he’s kind of a bucker.

“I knew he’d be good. I knew if I did my job and he had his day, it would end up good. It was a little scary on the get-off. You don’t always plan that, but everything panned out.”

That it did. Part of it has to do with the primary stock producer, Texas-based Stace Smith Pro Rodeo, which has won Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association Stock Contractor of the Year 11 times.

“There is an outstanding pen of horses here, and everybody’s got an honest shot,” Wilson said. “When you enter one of Stace Smith’s rodeos, you’re pretty sure you’re going to have a good chance to place.”

That’s all he wants at this stage. He hopes to continue to ride good horses and perform at his best.

“I’ve been climbing up each week,” he said. “There’s a lot of ground to gain, but there are a lot of rodeos yet to make it happen.”

Cattlemen’s Days
Gunnison, Colo.
July 13-15
Bareback riding:
1. Kash Wilson, 86 points on Three Hills Rodeo’s Big Show; 2. Rio Lee, 80.5; 3. Tanner Phipps, 78.5; 4. Evan Miller, 78; 5. Jared Keylon, 74; 6. Brian Brown, 71.

Steer wrestling: 1. (tie) Jarret New and Tom Lewis, 4.2 seconds; 3. Marcus Theriot, 4.6; 4. Tristan Martin, 4.7; 5. Cody Doescher, 5.9; 6. Levi Rudd, 9.1.

Team roping: 1. Cole Wheeler/Coy Brittian, 5.8 seconds; 2. (tie) Tyler Schnaufer/Trevor Schnaufer, 5.9; 4. Shay Carroll/Nano Garza, 10.4; no other qualified rides.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. Charlie Kogaines, 82.5 points on Three Hills Rodeo’s Final Feather; 2. Nat Stratton, 81.5; 3. Shade Etbauer, 79.5; 4. Alex Wright, 79; 5. (tie) Brody Cress and Brady Nicholes, 78

Tie-down roping: 1. Stuart Hoar, 9.6 seconds; 2. Joe Colletti, 10.7; 3. Ryan Canty, 24.9; no other qualified times.

Barrel racing: 1. Nicole Waggoner, 17.64 seconds; 2. Tammy Fischer, 17.73; 3. Dani Durham, 17.94; 4. Melanie Roman, 18.29; 5. Carol Ruggieri, 18.74; 6. Kelly Yates, 23.14; 7. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 23.48; 8. Toni Hardin, 27.96.

Bull riding: 1. Cole Melancon, on Smith, Harper & Morgan’s Bad Black, and Nate Perry, on United Rodeo’s Sports Page, 82 points; no other qualified rides.

postheadericon Josey is back for the action

Justin Josey has returned to the game he loves after taking a little break to get his mind in sync with his body. He was 83 this past weekend in Vernal, Utah. (TODD BREWER PHOTO)

Justin Josey has returned to the game he loves after taking a little break to get his mind in sync with his body. He was 83 this past weekend in Vernal, Utah. (TODD BREWER PHOTO)

Oklahoma man returns to the game he loves with Bullfighters Only

VERNAL, Utah – Justin Josey’s head wasn’t in the game.

When the game is freestyle bullfighting, men must be on top of every situation, or the outcomes could be deadly. The Spanish fighting bulls are mean and aggressive, and it takes a bullfighter who is not only fleet of foot but also can react and control the animal’s actions.

“I didn’t think I was fighting bulls the way I wanted to be,” said Josey, 22, of Apache, Okla. “I decided to take a breather … for about nine months.”

It did wonders, and he returned to the ring for the Bullfighters Only-Vernal competition, in conjunction with the famous Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo. Josey scored 83 points with a textbook bout against Manuel Costa’s Thumper.

“I’ve never been so excited for a bullfight in my life,” he said. “I’m all kinked out instead of kinked up.”

That time away from the arena was just what the young bullfighter needed.

Whether it was a bit of discontent with his work or a bit of burnout that comes with a game as dangerous as freestyle bullfighting, he was not in the right frame of mind to do what’s necessary.

“Josey is one of those kids that just has raw talent,” said Weston Rutkowski, the reigning BFO world champion who sits No. 2 in the 2017 Pendleton Whisky World Standings. “He’s very flashy and can surely wow the crowd.

“Fighting bulls is a lot more mental than it is physical. In this game, I think it’s smart to step away from fighting bulls if your mind and heart aren’t into it. I think it was a good move for him, and now I’m interested to see how he handles it.”

He’s handling it quite well.

“I didn’t realize how much I loved an animal like I do the Spanish fighting bulls,” Josey said. “I’m just excited for the opportunity to work with these bulls again.”

Getting back into the game wasn’t easy for the Oklahoma talent, and he had to gain the approval of the 13 other BFO pioneers.

“We all love Josey and no one was mad when he decided to step away,” BFO founder, Aaron Ferguson said. “BFO is a platform for the best bullfighters in the world, and Justin is one of the best. I am excited to see him back in the arena with some fresh perspectives.”

That works just fine for Josey.

“Being part of the BFO means everything,” he said. “Ever since I first started, I wanted to be the best freestyle bullfighter to do it. At one point, I lost my vision of that goal. I think the thing that works is that you have the best in the business in the BFO. What’s a world championship if you’re not going against the best in the world.

“Whenever you wear that gold buckle around, you want to say you won it against the best guys in the world and fought the best bulls in the world. That’s what the BFO brings.”

postheadericon Albertson is special for fair, rodeo

EAGLE, Colo. – Fourteen years ago, life was considerably different for Hanna Albertson.

She had just been crowned the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo queen. It wasn’t the first time she was involved in the annual exposition, but it was a critical piece of what helped lay the foundation for her vibrant personality.

Hanna Albertson grew up around the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo. Now she's the chairwoman of the expo's advisory committee.

Hanna Albertson grew up around the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo. Now she’s the chairwoman of the expo’s advisory committee.

Albertson has spent most of her life in Eagle County. She was born in Aspen, Colo., but moved to Vail at the age of 2. She has continued to be a big part of her community event, which is set for Wednesday, July 19-Saturday, July 22, at the Eagle County Fairgrounds.

“She is the chairwoman of the fair and rodeo advisory council, and she does an amazing job,” Fair Manager Tanya Dahlseid said. “She is impressive. She is a hard worker and dedicate. She’s just so helpful.

“She is so driven to make this the best of the best.”

The fair and rodeo is a vital event in the community, and it brings so many people from throughout the valley to Eagle for the festival. But it goes beyond that. Because the area is such a hot spot for tourists through the summer, the fair and rodeo becomes another top attraction.

“What’s cool about our fair and rodeo is it’s not necessarily the people from our area that come but people from around the globe,” Albertson said. “They can come to the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo to get funnel cakes, see the 4H exhibits and enjoy the rodeo. That’s what makes this event so special.

“We have a diverse population, and we bring in new people and introduce them to the sport of rodeo.”

It not only makes the expo special, it’s what defines this vibrant community. It’s also what defines Albertson, a Southern Methodist University graduate who has returned to her home to be part of the Eagle County fabric.

“The fair and rodeo is an amazing community event and keeps this Western heritage event in Eagle County,” she said. “it’s just a great event for our community and shows where we came from.

“Giving back to my community is what runs in my family. This is my way of giving back and making a difference.”

It shows, in every exhibit, every carnival ride, every rodeo performance and every funnel cake consumed.

postheadericon Slone finds fun, money in Estes

Ace Slone closes out the 2017 Rooftop Rodeo with a 7.8-second tie-down roping run. He finished in a tie for second place in the second go-round. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

Ace Slone closes out the 2017 Rooftop Rodeo with a 7.8-second tie-down roping run. He finished in a tie for second place in the second go-round. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

ESTES PARK, Colo. – Ace Slone has a lot more reasons to be at Rooftop Rodeo than just roping calves.

“We always try to enter Estes Park for the end so we have a few days to hang out here,” said Slone, 28, of Cuero, Texas. “This is our favorite place to hang out every summer. We try to be here every Monday night.”

He was originally scheduled to compete in both go-rounds Saturday morning, but a scheduling conflict forced him to trade with another tie-down roper. After having trouble with his first-round calf, Slone made the most of his second round Monday with a 7.8-second run.

That was good enough to finish in a tie for second place with Westyn Hughes, and each cowboy pocketed $1,178. Hughes, by the way, placed in both rounds and won overall title with a two-run cumulative time of 15.8 seconds. Hughes earned $4,384 at Rooftop Rodeo.

“A little consolation in the second round goes a long way,” Slone said. “Plus, we don’t mind being here on Monday and having a couple of days off in Estes. The way they treated us here with the hospitality is amazing. There are very few rodeos that are as hospitable.

“They make it a lot of fun with the full RV hookups and meals, and, of course, we enjoy it for all the reasons all the tourists come to Estes. I love to fish, and we go to Rocky Mountain National Park every year. It’s just an awesome place to hang out.”

Of course, there also was some unfinished business to tend to once he arrived.

“Fortunately, I drew a good calf and was able to put a good run together,” he said. “This round was really fast, so there was no holding back.”

Rooftop Rodeo
Estes Park, Colo.
July 5-10, 2017
Bareback riding:
1. Jake Brown, 84.5 points on Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Rose Puff, $6,260; 2. Steven Dent, 83, $4,800; 3. Buck Lunak, 82.5, $3,548; 4. (tie) Dantan Bertsch, Seth Hardwick and Zach Hibler, 81, $1,600 each; 7. (tie) Orin Larsen and Austin Foss, 80.5, $730.

Steer wrestling: First round: 1. Billy Bugenig, 3.8 seconds, $1,573; 2. Cody Doescher, 3.9, $1,302; 3. Wade Sumpter, 4.0, $1,031; 4. Blaine Jones, 4.1, $760; 5. (tie) Justice Johnson and Errol Frain, 4.4, $380 each. Second round: 1. Blaine Jones, 3.5 seconds, $1,573; 2. Blare Romsa, 3.7, $1,302; 3. Cody Cabral, 3.9, $1,031; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt, Cameron Morman and Billy Bugenig, 4.0, $506 each. Average: 1. Blaine Jones, 7.6 seconds on two runs, $2,360; 2. Billy Bugenig, 7.8, $1,953; 3. Cody Cabral, 8.6, $1,546; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt and Hunter Cure, 8.7. $936 each; 6. Baylor Roche, 8.8, $407.

Team roping: 1. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 4.7 seconds, $4,121; 2. Levi Simpson/Jeremy Buhler, 5.0, $3,688; 3. Lane Ivy/Buddy Hawkins, 5.1, $3,254; 5. (tie)Matt Sherwood/Walt Woodard and Cory Kidd/Cole Davison, 5.2, $2,603 each; 6. Ty Blasingame/Tanner Luttrell, 5.3, $1,952; 7. (tie) Marcus Theriot/Cody Doescher and Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4, $1,301 each; 9. (tie) Casey Adams/Riley Pedro and Kolton Schmidt/Dugan Kelly, 5.9, $434 each.

Saddle bronc riding 1. Layton Green, 84.5 points on Cervi Rodeo’s Payback, $5,330; 2. Hardy Braden, 84, $4,086; 3. (tie) Tanner Lockhart and Brody Cress, 83.5, $2,487 each; 5. (tie) Cort Scheer and Heith DeMoss, 82.5, $1,066 each; 8. (tie) Colt Gordon and Roper Kiesner, 82, $622 each.

Tie-down roping: First round: 1. Cooper Martin, 7.8 seconds, $1,589; 2. Westyn Hughes, 8.0, $1,314; 3. (tie) Tim Pharr, Jake Pratt and Tuf Cooper, 8.1, $767 each; 6. (tie) Tyler Prcin and Lane Livingston, 8.2, $137 each. Second round 1. Taylor Santos, 7.5 seconds, $1,589; 2. (tie) Ace Slone and Westyn Hughes, 7.8, $1,178 each; 4. (tie) Justin Smith, Scott Kormos, Cimarron Boardman and Caleb Smidt, 7.9, $384 each. Average: 1. Westyn Hughes, 15.8 seconds on two runs, $2,383; 2. Caleb Smidt, 16.5, $1,972; 3. Jake Pratt, 16.8, $1,561; 4. Sterling Smith, 17.6, $1,151; 5. Robert Mathis, 17.9; 6. Monty Lewis, 18.4, $411.

Barrel racing: 1. Taci Bettis, 17.36 seconds, $3,978; 2. Tillar Murray, 17.42, $3,182; 3. Kelley Schnaufer, 17.48, $2,586; 4. Christine Laughlin, 17.51, $1,989; 5. Tammy Fischer, 17.56, $1,591; 6. Sidney Forrest, 17.58, $1,193; 7. (tie) Sydni Blanchard and Ashley Shafer, 17.59, $945 each; 9. Michele McLeod, 17.62, $796; 10. (tie) Shelby Janssen and Kaylee Burnett, 17.66, $646 each; 12. Ari-Anna Flynn, 17.68, $497; 13. (tie) Bonnie Wheatley and Erin Parsons, 17.71, $348 each; 15. (tie) Ericka Nelson and Kynzie McNeill, 17.73, $99 each.

Bull riding: 1. Scottie Knapp, 87 points on Cervi Brothers’ Po-Boy, $3,948; 2. Cole Meloncon, 85.5, $3,027; 3. Trey Benton II, 85, $2,237; 4. Remi Wildeman, 83, $1,448; 5. (tie) Tyler Ray Viers and Hawk Whitt, 81, $789 each; 7. Trevor Reiste, 79, $526; 6. Garrett Uptain, 77, $395.

postheadericon Schueth returns to winner’s circle

Beau Scheuth battles 12X and Costa's Portuguese Power for 85.5 points to win the Bullfighters Only-Vernal event this past weekend. (JIM FAIN PHOTO)

Beau Schueth battles 12X and Costa’s Portuguese Power for 85.5 points to win the Bullfighters Only-Vernal event this past weekend. (JIM FAIN PHOTO)

VERNAL, Utah – Beau Schueth finally got what he’s been looking for over the last 11 months.

“It definitely feels good to finally get a win,” said Schueth, who earned the Bullfighters Only-Vernal championship, which took place in conjunction with the Dinosaur Roundup Rodeo. “That’s pretty huge.”

Schueth opened the three-day bullfights by matching moves with 12X and Costa’s Portuguese Power for 85.5 points. He then held on with the highest bullfighter score to win the tie-breaker over Dayton Spiel of Parade, S.D., to claim the title – Spiel posted his 85.5-point fight on Saturday, the final night of the competition.

“I thought I had a good bullfight, but I didn’t know if 85.5 points would hold up,” said Schueth, 25, of O’Neill, Neb. “Now that I’ve got the W, I’m looking to keep things rolling through the next few weeks.”

Once the powerful black bull locked in on Schueth, the fight was on.

“He was a real stout black bull,” he said. “I like starting them with a fake to my right. Just looking at him, I didn’t think he was going to really blow through (the fakes) hard, so I knew it was going to be a tight bullfight the whole time. Luckily I had a back fake out of there after I made a couple of rounds and step-throughs.”

As the fight progressed, Schueth was the aggressor and continued to keep the bull within firing range. That’s important in freestyle bullfighting, because half the score is based on the animal, its willingness to stay in the fight and its aggressiveness.

Schueth’s final maneuver – the one he was “selling” the fight on to hopefully impress the judges even more – was to be his patented spine grind, in which the he jumps over the bull and lightly touches the animal’s back with his cleats; it’s much like how skateboarders and snowboarders grind on a rail.

“He got my drag foot and flipped me over,” Schueth said. “At least I got over him, but I would’ve liked it better if I’d been able to land on my feet.

“He was definitely a fun little bull, but you know you’re going to fight good ones when Manuel (Costa) brings the pen.”

The weekend marked BFO’s first trip to Vernal. By being out the first night, Schueth noticed that the crowd didn’t know what to expect at first. That changed quickly.

“Once they figured out what we were doing, they really got into it,” he said. “They loved it. It was cool to see how much they got into it. That was awesome.”

RESULTS
Round 1: Beau Schueth, 85.5 points; 2. Weston Rutkowski, 82; 3. Zach Arthur, 75.
Round 2: 1. Evan Allard, 78 points; 2. Travis Gidley, 73.5; 3. Ely Sharkey, 70.5.
Round 3: Dayton Spiel, 85.5 points; 2. Justin Josey, 83; 3. Kris Furr, 75.

postheadericon Shaw center benefits from pink night

The Shaw Cancer Center in Edwards, Colo., treats patients from all over the region and is the beneficiary of the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo's Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign.

The Shaw Cancer Center in Edwards, Colo., treats patients from all over the region and is the beneficiary of the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo’s Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign.

EAGLE, Colo. – When the Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign was established in ProRodeo 13 years ago, it was to raise money and awareness in the fight against breast cancer.

For some communities, the campaign is about giving locally and fighting all levels of cancer. That’s the case with the TETWP at the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo, which takes place Wednesday, July 19-Saturday, July 22, at the Eagle County Fairgrounds.

“We partner with the Shaw Regional Cancer Center, and it’s really amazing that we get to benefit its patients,” said Hanna Albertson, chairwoman of the fair and rodeo’s advisory committee. “I think it’s important that we give back locally.”

It is, and those at the cancer center in nearby Edwards, Colo.

“The Eagle County Fair and Rodeo came to us seven years ago about partnering when they started the Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign,” said Christine Albertson, community outreach and events manager for the center. “They donate funds raised on Friday (July 21), with 50 cents from each ticket sold going to Shaw. Some of the kids want to donate their proceeds from the animals they show at the fair.”

Christine Albertson has been with Shaw since 2012, and in that time, Tough Enough to Wear Pink has contributed $27,785 to the cancer center. That money is utilized in various ways to assist patients with their treatments.

“We get funding through a lot of entities, but we appreciate the relationship we have with the fair and rodeo,” she said. “The rodeo attracts lots of people from all over, and funding is a great asset. The money helps with patients who need extra services. It helps with our social workers, nutritionist and other areas.

“The money is definitely needed for those patient services.”

That includes Jack’s Place, a 12-room cancer caring home.

“Patients come and stay on a pay-what-you-can philosophy,” Christine Albertson said. “They can come with their caregiver. We get a lot of patients from out of town. They might have five days of treatment, and this lodge allows them to stay without spending so much money.”

There are also services for patients using Jack’s Place: yoga, meditation, acupuncture. There also is a full kitchen, so the patients can take groceries and prepare their own food.

“It’s just a nice place to relax, especially in the wintertime when it’s snowing.”

Some of the benefits are because of the generosity of so many who give to the cancer center, including the Eagle County Fair and Rodeo.

postheadericon Dodson loves being part of Roundup

DODGE CITY, Kan. – There are many reasons why Dodge City Roundup Rodeo is considered one of the best.

Five years ago, the annual event was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame. Over the years, it has been recognized as Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association’s Rodeo of the Year nine times. Each August, hundreds of the sport’s greatest stars converge on the community to be part of the high-flying, big-money action.

Jeff Dodson

Jeff Dodson

This year’s rodeo is scheduled for 7:45 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 2-Sunday, Aug. 6, at Roundup Arena. The kick-starter to the weeklong festivities will be Bulls Night Out, which features Xtreme Bulls and Bullfighters Only’s freestyle bullfighting on Tuesday, Aug. 1.

“I think we focus on pleasing three groups of people,” said Jeff Dodson, a 16-year volunteer on the rodeo committee that produces the annual event. “First of all, we want to put on a good show for the crowd. We get the best contestants, and we want to give the fans something special to experience.

“We want to please the contestants, so we want to have the best grounds and the best stock available along with a good payout. We also want our sponsors to say they’re glad to be part of this. You want to keep your sponsors coming back year after year and getting behind you.”

Dodson joined Roundup in 2002. A year later, he was one of the directors. Most of his tenure, he has been the guy sitting atop the timed-event chute helping with that aspect of the competition: Once the animal is loaded, he waits for the contestant’s nod to release the animal into the arena.

“I joined Roundup because most of my friends are involved with it,” he said. “I love the sport. It’s a good way to get involved without being a competitor.”

He is one of many volunteers who help with all the behind-the-scenes work that comes with producing one of the biggest events in southwest Kansas.

“Volunteers are the cornerstone to what we do at Roundup Rodeo,” said Dr. R.C. Trotter, the volunteer committee’s president. “It takes a great amount of man hours to get the arena set up, to make sure all the fine details are covered and to have each performance be successful.”

It’s working. Last year, the event was recognized as one of five nominees for PRCA Large Outdoor Rodeo of the Year. On top of that, the rodeo is one part of the community celebration, Dodge City Days.

“I feel great about that nomination and the fact that I’m part of something special,” said Dodson, who works for Kansas Feeds. “It’s an honor and a thrill to be part of Roundup. It’s a lot of hard work, but when it’s over, you realize that you were part of it. You see the full stands and the huge crowd that loves the rodeo; I get to say that I was part of it.”

postheadericon Scheer in position to earn Estes cash

Cort Scheer gets a raring start to his 82.5-point ride on Cervi's Shot Glass on Sunday at Rooftop Rodeo. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

Cort Scheer gets a raring start to his 82.5-point ride on Cervi’s Shot Glass on Sunday at Rooftop Rodeo. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

ESTES PARK, Colo. – For Cort Scheer, there is nothing better than being on the rodeo trail.

“I’m having fun again,” said Scheer of Elsmere, Neb. “We’re back in the old traveling group again. We’re laughing, we’re golfing, we’re fishing. I give God all the glory; I got a lot closer to God this year.

“I’m really excited, and I’m having a blast.”

It showed Sunday night during the fifth performance of Rooftop Rodeo, where he rode Cervi Rodeo’s Shot Glass for 82.5 points to move fifth place in saddle bronc riding. With one performance remaining in this year’s event, he stands a good chance to add to his season earnings in Estes Park.

Cort Scheer

Cort Scheer

“When you draw good horses like that, and it’s just fun,” he said. “Half the battle is drawing good horses; the rest of it is just getting lucky and staying on.”

He’s more than lucky. Scheer is good. He’s a five-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier who has finished No. 2 in the world standings twice. He’s and an established veteran of the game, and so is Shot Glass.

“He’s been a good horse for a long time,” he said. “I was really happy to get on him. My job was just to take care of business.”

If he remains in that same position when the rodeo concludes Monday, Scheer will add about $1,300 to his pocket. He can use every dollar possible; he is 25th in the world standings with $27,629, but only the top in the standings in each event at the conclusion of the regular season advance to the NFR, ProRodeo’s grand championship that takes place each December in Las Vegas.

“We’ve been going up and down the road hoping we know where we’re going and hoping the family can find us,” he said with a laugh. “

Scheer and several other cowboys took the 2016 season away from rodeo, but now he’s back with a vengeance. He realized that while he was away from the game, he still had a great opportunity to hone his skills.

“Last year all I did was get on good horses everywhere I went, and it helped with my confidence,” he said. “Now I don’t have to worry about anything. It makes a guy ride good when all he gets on is good horses.”

That included Sunday night in Estes Park.

“I’ve only been here maybe five times,” Scheer said. “I love this place. This is one of the prettiest places in the world. We golfed two miles north of here, and it’s one of the nicest courses I’ve ever hit.

“The committee around here bends over backwards for you. It’s great.”

Rooftop Rodeo
Estes Park, Colo.
July 5-10, 2017
Leaders through third performance
Bareback riding:
1. Jake Brown, 84.5 points on Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Rose Puff; 2. Steven Dent, 873; 3. (tie) Buck Lunak and Orin Larsen, 81.5; 5. (tie) Dantan Bertsch, Seth Hardwick and Zach Hibler, 81.

Steer wrestling: First round: 1. Billy Bugenig, 3.8 seconds, $1,573; 2. Cody Doescher, 3.9, $1,302; 3. Wade Sumpter, 4.0, $1,031; 4. Blaine Jones, 4.1, $760; 5. (tie) Justice Johnson and Errol Frain, 4.4, $380 each. Second round leaders: 1. Blaine Jones, 3.5 seconds; 2. Blare Romsa, 3.7; 3. Cody Cabral, 3.9; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt, Cameron Morman and Billy Bugenig, 4.0; 7. (tie) Baylor Roche and Hunter Cure, 4.1. Average leaders: 1. Blaine Jones, 7.6 seconds on two runs; 2. Billy Bugenig, 7.8; 3. Cody Cabral, 8.6; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt and Hunter Cure, 8.7; 6. Baylor Roche, 8.8.

Team roping: 1. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 4.7 seconds; 2. Lane Ivy/Buddy Hawkins, 5.1; 3. Matt Sherwood/Walt Woodard, 5.2; 4. Ty Blasingame/Tanner Luttrell, 5.3; 5. (tie) Marcus Theriot/Cody Doescher and Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4.

Saddle bronc riding 1. Layton Green, 84.5 points on Cervi Rodeo’s Payback; 2. Hardy Braden, 84; 3. (tie) Tanner Lockhart and Brody Cress, 83.5; 5. Cort Scheer, 82.5 points; 6.  (tie) Colt Gordon and Roper Kiesner, 82.

Tie-down roping: First round: 1. Cooper Martin, 7.8 seconds; 2. Westyn Hughes, 8.0, $1,314; 3. (tie) Tim Pharr, Jake Pratt and Tuf Cooper, 8.1, $767 each; 6. (tie) Tyler Prcin and Lane Livingston, 8.2, $137 each. Second round leaders: 1. Taylor Santos, 7.5 seconds; 2. (tie) Blane Cox and Westyn Hughes, 7.8; 4. (tie) Justin Smith, Scott Kormos, Cimarron Boardman and Caleb Smidt, 7.9. Average leaders: 1. Westyn Hughes, 15.8 seconds on two runs; 2. Caleb Smidt, 16.5; 3. Jake Pratt, 16.8; 4. Sterling Smith, 17.6; 5. Robert Mathis, 17.9; 6. Blane Cox, 18.0.

Barrel racing: 1. Taci Bettis, 17.36 seconds; 2. Kelley Schnaufer, 17.48; 3. Christine Laughlin, 17.51; 4. Tammy Fischer, 17.56; 5. Sidney Forrest, 17.58; 6. Ashley Shafer, 17.59; 8. (tie) Shelby Janssen and Kaylee Burnett, 17.66; 10. Ari-Anna Flynn, 17.68.
Bull riding: 1. Scottie Knapp, 87 points on Cervi Brothers’ Po-Boy; 2. Remi Wildeman, 83; 3. (tie) Tyler Ray Viers and Hawk Whitt, 81; 5. Trevor Reiste, 79; 6. Garrett Uptain, 77.

 

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postheadericon Brown finds the fun at Rooftop

Jake Brown rides Cervi Rodeo's Rose Puff for 84.5 points Saturday night to take the bareback riding lead at Rooftop Rodeo. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

Jake Brown rides Cervi Rodeo’s Rose Puff for 84.5 points Saturday night to take the bareback riding lead at Rooftop Rodeo. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

ESTES PARK, Colo. – Bareback rider Jake Brown has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo each of the past two seasons.

He credits his success to just one philosophy: Have fun.

“If I take care of business and ride like I know how, I think I have a chance to win the gold buckle,” he said of the trophy awarded to world champions. “Don’t overthink anything. I just need to go out and ride bareback horses, have fun every time and see how the cards fall.”

Jake Brown

Jake Brown

It’s been a pretty solid formula since 2015. He sits fourth in the world standings with more than $71,000 in earnings so far this season, and he’s looking to add to it at Rooftop Rodeo. He took the bareback riding lead Saturday night after riding Cervi Rodeo’s Rose Puff for 84.5 points.

“She’s been around a long time,” said Brown, 27, of Cleveland, Texas. “I got on that horse in 2010, and I knew she was good. She’s proven herself for 15 years. I expected a good horse, and that’s exactly what she was.”

That’s the kind of rides he needs if he wants to continue to climb the standings ladder. He is about $45,000 behind the bareback riding leader, reigning world champion Tim O’Connell. Having success in Estes Park can go a long way: The winner can expect a payout in excess of $6,000.

“I’d say the biggest difference in my riding the last few years is I’ve gotten a lot more confident,” Brown said. “I’m staying calm and riding the horse they give me, not trying to overdo anything. I just want to relax and have fun every time.”

Two more performances remain at Rooftop Rodeo, so Brown will have to wait until it concludes Monday to see how he finishes. Still, that kind of score should put the Texan in position to cash a big check.

“This is awesome weather,” he said, referring to the cool mountain temperatures in Estes Park. “I like it when you don’t sweat very much, and up here it’s great. They have a great crowd, a great rodeo. It’s hard to beat this.”

He’s certainly going to try while competing in the most physically demanding event in rodeo.

“I guess I’ll keep doing it until I’m not winning anymore,” Brown said with a laugh. “The main thing is I love it. If I’m having fun, I just want to keep doing it. Right now, I’m having a blast.”

Rooftop Rodeo
Estes Park, Colo.
July 5-10, 2017
Leaders through third performance
Bareback riding:
1. Jake Brown, 84.5 points on Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Rose Puff; 2. Steven Dent, 873; 3. (tie) Buck Lunak and Orin Larsen, 81.5; 5. (tie) Dantan Bertsch, Seth Hardwick and Zach Hibler, 81.

Steer wrestling: First round: 1. Billy Bugenig, 3.8 seconds, $1,573; 2. Cody Doescher, 3.9, $1,302; 3. Wade Sumpter, 4.0, $1,031; 4. Blaine Jones, 4.1, $760; 5. (tie) Justice Johnson and Errol Frain, 4.4, $380 each. Second round leaders: 1. Blaine Jones, 3.5 seconds; 2. Blare Romsa, 3.7; 3. Cody Cabral, 3.9; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt, Cameron Morman and Billy Bugenig, 4.0; 7. (tie) Baylor Roche and Hunter Cure, 4.1. Average leaders: 1. Blaine Jones, 7.6 seconds on two runs; 2. Billy Bugenig, 7.8; 3. Cody Cabral, 8.6; 4. (tie) Cody Pratt and Hunter Cure, 8.7; 6. Baylor Roche, 8.8.

Team roping: 1. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 4.7 seconds; 2. Lane Ivy/Buddy Hawkins, 5.1; 3. Matt Sherwood/Walt Woodard, 5.2; 4. Ty Blasingame/Tanner Luttrell, 5.3; 5. (tie) Marcus Theriot/Cody Doescher and Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4.

Saddle bronc riding 1. Layton Green, 84.5 points on Cervi Rodeo’s Payback; 2. Hardy Braden, 84; 3. (tie) Tanner Lockhart and Brody Cress, 83.5; 5. (tie) Colt Gordon and Roper Kiesner, 82.

Tie-down roping: First round: 1. Cooper Martin, 7.8 seconds; 2. Westyn Hughes, 8.0, $1,314; 3. (tie) Tim Pharr, Jake Pratt and Tuf Cooper, 8.1, $767 each; 6. (tie) Tyler Prcin and Lane Livingston, 8.2, $137 each. Second round leaders: 1. Taylor Santos, 7.5 seconds; 2. (tie) Blane Cox and Westyn Hughes, 7.8; 4. (tie) Justin Smith, Scott Kormos, Cimarron Boardman and Caleb Smidt, 7.9. Average leaders: 1. Westyn Hughes, 15.8 seconds on two runs; 2. Caleb Smidt, 16.5; 3. Jake Pratt, 16.8; 4. Sterling Smith, 17.6; 5. Robert Mathis, 17.9; 6. Blane Cox, 18.0.

Barrel racing: 1. Taci Bettis, 17.36 seconds; 2. Kelley Schnaufer, 17.48; 3. Christine Laughlin, 17.51; 4. Tammy Fischer, 17.56; 5. Sidney Forrest, 17.58; 6. Ashley Shafer, 17.59; 8. (tie) Shelby Janssen and Kaylee Burnett, 17.66; 10. Ari-Anna Flynn, 17.68.
Bull riding: 1. Scottie Knapp, 87 points on Cervi Brothers’ Po-Boy; 2. Remi Wildeman, 83; 3. (tie) Tyler Ray Viers and Hawk Whitt, 81; 5. Trevor Reiste, 79; 6. Garrett Uptain, 77.

postheadericon Bugenig is Wick-ed at Rooftop

Four-time NFR qualifier Billy Bugenig dismounts two-time horse of the year Wick en route to a first-round leading 3.8-second run at Rooftop Rodeo in Estes Park. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

Four-time NFR qualifier Billy Bugenig dismounts two-time horse of the year Wick en route to a first-round leading 3.8-second run at Rooftop Rodeo in Estes Park. (GREG WESTFALL PHOTO)

ESTES PARK, Colo. – Billy Bugenig is a four-time qualifier to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

Each time he’s competed in steer wrestling at ProRodeo’s grand finale in Las Vegas, he did so on the back of Dashs Dapper Star, a horse he calls Wick and owns with fellow bulldogger Wade Sumpter. On Friday night during the third performance of Rooftop Rodeo, Wick put Bugenig back in the position the cowboy needed, and the result was a first-round leading 3.8-second run.

“Wick’s been around for years,” Bugenig said of powerful sorrel gelding that was named the PRCA/AQHA Steer Wrestling Horse of the Year in 2010 and ’11. “He’s old now. I told him maybe one more good year, then he could retire, but he’s still looking good and working good.”

It showed in Estes Park. The Ferndale, Calif., cowboy took advantage of a good steer. Now he’ll wait through Saturday mornings non-performance competition – known as “slack” in rodeo terms – to see how his time falls in the first round. He will then compete on his second steer on Saturday night.

“I had a good run, but it could’ve been a little faster,” Bugenig said. “He kind of hit on a leg, but we’ll take it. I don’t know how much it’ll win, but it’ll be good.”

At Rooftop Rodeo, steer wrestlers and tie-down ropers compete in two go-rounds. The top finishers in each round will earn payouts, then the top times in the two-run aggregate will also cash in. And every dollar counts in rodeo, where there are no guaranteed earnings.

Dollars equal points, and the top 15 cowboys in the standings in each event at the conclusion of the regular season advance to the NFR. Bugenig would like to return for a fifth time. Heading into this week’s competition, he sits 41st in the standings, so he has some room to make up.

“As long as I’m doing this, it’s going to be a priority for me to go to the NFR,” he said. “When I’m done, I’ll be done. I’ve got a few good years left in me hopefully.”

Part of the reason he’s down in the standings is that he spent time working at his home in northern California.

“We just headed out at Reno (Nev.), then I had a decent Fourth (of July run), so hopefully we’ll get rolling,” Bugenig said. “It’s good to have confidence in your horse and being able to catch up. When you back in (the timed-event box) and are confident, that means everything.”

Most of the $19,500 he’s won this year has come in the last month, but that’s because of a rough and tumble few weeks of traveling many miles and competing in several rodeos in a short amount of time.

“It’s good to get out of the heat,” he said about returning to Estes Park for the second straight year. “July is a busy month for us, so to be able to come up here for a couple of days in the cool weather feels pretty good.

“It’s a great committee here. They try to do better every year. That’s what we like are people who are trying to get better and help us. It’s a great rodeo and great weather, and we’re glad to be here.”

Rooftop Rodeo
Estes Park, Colo.
July 5-10, 2017
Leaders through third performance
Bareback riding:
1. Buck Lunak, 81.5 points on Cervi Brothers’ Silence of the Lambs; 2. Dantan Bertsch, 81; 3. Evan Jayne, 79; 4. Tyler Scales, 78; 5. Bill Tutor, 77.5; 6. (tie) Luke Creasy and Shane O’Connell, 75; 8. (tie) Mike Solberg and Jessy Davis, 73.

Steer wrestling: 1. Billy Bugenig, 3.8 seconds; 2. Cody Doescher, 3.9; 3. (tie) Justice Johnson and Errol Frain, 4.4; 5. Hunter Cure, 4.6; 6. Jarrett New, 4.8; 7. (tie) Beau Clark and Kane Butcher, 5.1.

Team roping: 1. Matt Sherwood/Walt Woodard, 5.2 seconds; 2. (tie) Marcus Theriot/Cody Doescher and Joshua Torres/Jonathan Torres, 5.4; 4. (tie) Casey Adams/Riley Pedro and Kolton Schmidt/Dugan Kelly, 5.9; 6. Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger, 6.2; 7. Philip Schuman/Marcus Banister, 11.8; 8. (tie) Chad Masters/Travis Graves and Rhett Anderson/Quinn Kesler, 14.8.

Saddle bronc riding 1. Layton Green, 84.5 points on Cervi Rodeo’s Payback; 2. (tie) Colt Gordon and Roper Kiesner, 82; 4. Cody DeMoss, 81; 5. Tyler Turco, 79; 6. (tie) Andy Clarys and Jake Finley, 77; 8. (tie) Louie Brunson and Garrett Buckley, 76.5.

Tie-down roping: 1. Westyn Hughes, 8.0 seconds; 2. Tim Pharr, 8.1; 3. Reese Riemer, 8.4; 4. Caleb Smidt, 8.6; 5. Seth Hall, 9.0; 6. Tweety McBride, 9.6; 7. Catfish Brown, 10.2; 8. Bailey Young, 10.5.

Barrel racing: 1. Shelby Janssen, 17.66 seconds; 2. Ari-Anna Flynn, 17.68; 3. Ivy Conrado, 17.79; 4. Ranette Taylor, 18.16; (tie) 5. Jeni Cerise and Chris Gibson, 18.23; 7. Amanda Freese, 18.32; 8. Kelly Tovar, 18.34.
Bull riding: 1. Scottie Knapp, 87 points on Cervi Brothers’ Po-Boy; 2. Remi Wildeman, 83; 3. (tie) Tyler Ray Viers and Hawk Whitt, 81; 5. Trevor Reiste, 79; 6. Shawn Bennett Jr., 65; no other qualified rides.

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