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NFR – Round 10

Posted by on Dec 16, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, HORSE ORGANIZATIONS, INDUSTRY NEWS, MAJOR EVENTS, RODEO & BULLRIDING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

Courtesy PRCA
Dec. 16, 2018

Kimzey wins fifth straight bull riding title; Brazile wins 14th all-around title

LAS VEGAS – The 60th edition of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo proved to be historic. And not just because it marked 60 years of the Finals crowning world champions.

Trevor Brazile won his PRCA-record 14th All-Around gold buckle, adding to his ever-growing record of PRCA championships, this one No. 24, in front of 17,150 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Saturday, Dec. 15. 

Meanwhile, Sage Kimzey became the first bull rider in the NFR era to win five consecutive world championships. ProRodeo Hall of Famer Jim Shoulders won six consecutive bull riding world titles, but that was before the NFR began. 

“Anytime your name is by Jim Shoulders’ you are in a league you can’t put into words,” said Kimzey, 24. “He is one of the greatest cowboys of all time and it means the world to me.”

Kimzey’s fifth bull riding world title also puts him in precious company. Only four other bull riders have won at least five – Don Gay won eight, Shoulders seven, and Smokey Snyder and Harry Tompkins each won five.

Kimzey was banged up throughout the Finals, and that reflected in the fact that he rode four bulls. But Kimzey saved the best for last. 

Hopping on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Record Rack’s Shootin’ Stars, Kimzey posted a 93-point ride. Making it more impressive was the fact that Kimzey was bruised and battered.

“This year was tough, it was just sheer grit and determination from the start of the year,” he said. “It started with a fractured pelvis, and it was a 365-day grind. Going into here with a big lead, then getting hurt in the first round – it was a brutal 10 days and it was hard to get out of bed.”

While Kimzey’s career continues to flourish, Brazile announced before the Finals started that the 2018 season marked the last time he would rodeo full time. Brazile is going to an abbreviated schedule in 2019 to spend more time with his family.

Then he went out and won his 14th All-Around title, and he did it by winning Round 10 of the tie-down roping in 7.2 seconds. It was his 71st career go-round win at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo – in tie-down roping and team roping – and National Finals Steer Roping. Yet another record.

“When I came into Round 10, I was honestly so thankful that I had another chance,” Brazile said. “It wasn’t maybe the best chance. I had to win the round and do some certain things, but it was at least a chance, and as a competitor that’s all you can ask for.”

Brazile entered Round 10 trailing his brother-in-law Tuf Cooper by a little more than $12,000. Cooper won the All-Around title in 2017.

 “It’s a really unique situation because I love him so much, and I’m his biggest fan, too,” Brazile said of Cooper. “It’s a crazy dynamic that we’ve lived for so long, but I can’t wait to just set back and be able to watch him instead of competing against him.” 

And while some say Brazile should keep going as hard as ever, especially after the win, that’s not his thinking.

“The first question everybody wants to ask is you can’t go out now,” he said. “But, the competitor in me, this is the only way to go out. It was hard to swallow the other scenarios. I hadn’t roped well this week, and I ended up with three round wins. But I also ended up with three two loops, and that’s the most I’ve ever had. It couldn’t have ended any better.”

The 10-day attendance for the Wrangler NFR was 169,171.

O’Connell battles to win third consecutive bareback riding title

Two-time defending bareback riding champion Tim O’Connell came into the 2018 Wrangler NFR with the slimmest margin in the world standings he’d had over the last three years.

He saw that lead of $14,822 vanish by Round 7 of the Finals, with Caleb Bennett moving into first.

But O’Connell wasn’t ready to relinquish his title of world champion just yet.

O’Connell split the aggregate with Steven Dent to propel the Zwingle, Iowa, cowboy to his third consecutive world championship with $319,801.

“It’s surreal,” said O’Connell, who didn’t move into first place in the world standings until August. “It was a battle from Day 1. The season started slow, it picked up. It was a fight through the end of the season. It came down to me leaving it all on the line when it came down to the 10th round.”

Only seven bareback riders have won four or more world championships.

O’Connell vowed to treat the last two rounds like it was the third period of a wrestling match. He went out and won Round 9. Then in Round 10, he posted an 87-point ride on J Bar J’s All Pink to split fifth and earn the tie in the aggregate. O’Connell got thrown off after the whistle and landed awkwardly. He eventually walked off under his own power though. Nothing was going to keep him from getting that third gold buckle.

“I knew when I nodded my head, I was going to leave it all out there,” said O’Connell, 27. “Obviously, the chaos at the end showed it. Luckily, God left me with some safety. I might be a little banged up. It feels so much different. I had to fight. You guys had to see me fight.”

Smith/Eaves claim first team roping world titles

Clay Smith and Paul Eaves went out in the best way possible together.

The duo who decided before the Wrangler Finals kicked off Dec. 6 to go their separate ways on the rodeo trail, put together a team roping championship run.

Team roping header Smith and team roping heeler Eaves stopped the clock in 4.4 seconds in Round 10 to clinch third in the aggregate and win their respective world championships with $289,921 each. 

They each cashed in for $174,577 at the Finals. Their third-place aggregate finish was 34.5 seconds on eight head. Aaron Tsinigine and Trey Yates won the average with 69.6 seconds on 10 head.

“It’s everything we’ve worked for,” said Smith, 27.

“It’s what we’ve wanted since we were young,” said Eaves, 28. “It’s unbelievable.”

Smith and Eaves missed in Round 1, but rebounded immediately, winning Round 2. They placed in Round 3 and won Round 5. They placed in four of the last five rounds.

“We just stayed aggressive and tried to win something on every one of them,” said Smith, of Broken Bow, Okla.

The two have clicked together since they started together.

“It’s not just one thing, it’s a lot of things,” said Eaves, of Millsap, Texas. “The way he (Smith) ropes is aggressive and can catch. He’s got really good horses, and that’s a huge deal.”

But the two are parting ways for the 2019 season. 

“It’s just time for a change,” Eaves said.

Powered by second average crown, Waguespack claims second world title

Tyler Waguespack opened the 2018 Wrangler NFR with a Round 1 victory. He closed it with a world title.

The 28-year-old, Gonzales, La., cowboy claimed his second world championship in three years with $260,013. 

Waguespack spurred the victory with his aggregate win – 44.5 seconds on 10 head.

“This feels just like the first one,” he said. “We worked hard all year and it all paid off.”

Waguespack entered the Finals in 10th place. He trailed regular-season leader Curtis Cassidy by $26,425 when the Finals opened.

He won Rounds 1 and 8 and placed in five others. Over the 10 days, Waguespack won $180,429.

After winning Round 9, Waguespack knew the world title was well within reach. He didn’t crunch numbers, but he did know it was just a matter of taking care of business. 

“I knew after the ninth round if I could go in and win the average that the world title would take care of itself,” Waguespack said. “I was just making sure to go out there and make a good, solid run in the last round and get the job done.”

Having been there before, Waguespack understood what it took to win a world title. He also got some of the best advice from 24-time world champion Trevor Brazile.

“You know, man, I think Trevor Brazile said it the best, he described the NFR as a marathon and it’s a marathon you have to sprint 10 nights in a row,” Waguespack said.

Waguespack has plans for both of his world championship gold buckles.

“I’m going to keep my first one, I’m pretty sure,” he said, “and for sure I’m going to see if my dad will wear the second one.”

It’s buckle No. 2 for tie-down roper Caleb Smidt

For the second time in his career, Caleb Smidt is a world champion.

The tie-down roper from Bellville, Texas, won the 2018 gold buckle with $232,817, capping it off by winning the average with 83.7 seconds on 10 head. The average win cashed for $67,269.

Smidt’s previous world title (it also included the average title) came in 2015. Smidt’s newest title is the one he’s most proud of.

“This is awesome,” said Smidt, 29. “It has been a few years, but this one means a lot more to me than the first one. The first one I was young, and I was just roping. I came out here to rope and do it for my family. To have another world championship and average championship is awesome.”

Smidt’s only round win of the 2018 Finals came in Round 1. But that kicked off his Finals with a jumpstart. After that, he placed in four other rounds. 

“I started off good, placed in the first three rounds and won the first round,” he said. “I got some money bottled up there. The second half (the final five rounds) I was just getting them turned around, tying them down, and that’s what won me the average.”

He also just kept catching. 

“I wanted to do the same thing I’ve been doing all week,” Smidt said. “I got good starts and drew some really good calves. Tonight, I had one that was an OK calf and the horse was good. I’m just glad to be right here, right now.”

Smidt was riding Pockets.

“Pockets is 11 years old, and I have had him for four years,” Smidt said. “I won the world on him in 2015. He’s awesome. I didn’t ride him all summer. I rode a couple calves on him before I came out here (to the NFR), and he made it easy enough for me. We’ve got two gold buckles.”

Sundell wins first world title at 33

Wade Sundell qualified for the saddle bronc riding for the Wrangler Finals every year between 2007 and 2015. 

He didn’t make the Finals again until 2018. And this year wasn’t easy, as the 33-year-old’s house burned down over the summer.

But Sundell won $177,327 at the Finals to propel him to his first gold buckle with $280,636.

“Words can’t explain it, it’s amazing,” he said. “I’ve been trying to do it since the first time here, but I’m glad it came and hope there’s more to come.”

Sundell focused on getting back to Las Vegas. He accomplished that, getting in with the eighth-most money won among saddle bronc riders. He trailed regular-season leader Jacobs Crawley by $64,792.

But Sundell chipped away at the leaders. He just kept riding. He placed in the first three rounds, won Round 5, placed in Round 6, split the win in Round 7 and placed in the last two rounds.

He claims he did nothing different from what he’s always done.

“Just go day by day and do what you’ve been doing your whole life – keep your chin down and have fun riding bucking horses.”

Sundell already has plans for all the money he won.

“Life will do that to you,” he said about his housefire. “But keep your chin up – there’s no sense in being a Sally. … (I will) rebuild the house.”

As for his immediate plans.

“Go home and relax,” he said.

Kinsel cruises to first world title

With her first gold buckle already in hand, barrel racer Hailey Kinsel switched to her backup horse and cruised in Round 10.

Kinsel won with a WPRA single-season record $350,700. She wrapped up the world championship following her Round 9 victory.

“We had (the world championship) won, and I could have run (Sister) to try for that Top Gun deal, but she owes me nothing,” Kinsel said. “We accomplished our main goal, and we are getting ready for 2019. So, she had the night off and I ran my backup horse, TJ. He proved that he deserves to be here, too.”

Kinsel finished seventh in the aggregate, winning four rounds along the way. She may have clinched a night early, but she didn’t get her gold buckle officially until after Round 10.

“I love it,” she said. “It’s outstanding. We’ve dreamed to have this, and it’s even more than I could have imagined.”

Dougherty wins RAM Top Gun Award

Bull rider Chase Dougherty, a newcomer to the Wrangler NFR, won the RAM Top Gun Award, given to the competitor who wins the most money in the Finals in one event.

Dougherty won $209,058 over the 10-nights of the Finals. 

Steer wrestler Tyler Waguespack was second with $180,429. 

As the winner, Dougherty was awarded a 2019 RAM 3500 Heavy Duty Truck. He also received A RAM Top Gun-branded gun from Commemorative Firearms, as well as a custom Top Gun buckle from Montana Silversmiths. 

60th annual Wrangler National Finals Rodeo

10th Performance Results, Saturday, Dec. 15, 2018

Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nev.

Bareback riding: 1. Tilden Hooper, 89.5 points on Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Scarlett’s Web, $26,231; 2. (tie) Clayton Biglow and Richmond Champion, 88.5, $18,192 each; 4. Shane O’Connell, 87.5, $11,000; 5. (tie) Tim O’Connell and Kaycee Feild, 87, $5,500 each; 7. Mason Clements, 85.5; 8. Steven Dent, 84.5; 9. Orin Larsen, 83.5; 10. Wyatt Denny, 73; 11. (tie) Caleb Bennett, Jake Brown, NS; 13. Ty Breuer, Will Lowe and Bill Tutor, INJ. Average standings: 1. (tie) Tim O’Connell and Steven Dent, 849.5 points on 10 head, $60,923 each; 3. Tilden Hooper, 846.5, $43,154; 4. Kaycee Feild, 844, $31,731; 5. Richmond Champion, 842.5, $22,846; 6. Shane O’Connell, 839.5, $16,500; 7. Clayton Biglow, 772 points on nine head, $11,423; 8. Orin Larsen, 768, $6,346. World standings: 1. Tim O’Connell, $319,801; 2. Steven Dent, $254,733; 3. Tilden Hooper, $245,583; 4. Clayton Biglow, $245,435; 5. Richmond Champion, $243,345; 6. Caleb Bennett, $240,390; 7. Kaycee Feild, $231,445; 8. Orin Larsen, $222,732; 9. Mason Clements, $170,318; 10. Shane O’Connell, $161,451; 11. Bill Tutor, $154,162; 12. Ty Breuer, $127,789; 13. Jake Brown, $119,300; 14. Wyatt Denny, $117,958; 15. Will Lowe, $91,517. 

Steer wrestling: 1. Nick Guy, 3.7 seconds, $26,231; 2. (tie) Hunter Cure, Bridger Chambers and Ty Erickson, 4.6, $15,795 each; 5. Tyler Pearson, 4.7, $6,769; 6. Jacob Talley, 4.8, $4,231; 7. (tie) Will Lummus and Blake Mindemann, 5; 9. Tyler Waguespack, 5.1; 10. Kyle Irwin, 5.3; 11. Scott Guenthner, 5.4; 12. Blake Knowles, 8.3; 13. Riley Duvall, 10.1; 14. Curtis Cassidy and Tanner Brunner, NT. Average standings: 1. Tyler Waguespack, 44.5 seconds on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Bridger Chambers, 57.2, $54,577; 3. Blake Knowles, 68.2, $43,154; 4. Riley Duvall, 77.1, $31,731; 5. Nick Guy, 85.5, $22,846; 6. Will Lummus, 38 seconds on nine head, $16,500; 7. Scott Guenthner, 38.9, 11,423; 8. Hunter Cure, 40.5, $6,346. World standings: 1.Tyler Waguespack, $260,013; 2. Bridger Chambers, $216,762; 3. Will Lummus, $195,182; 4. Curtis Cassidy, $188,355; 5. Scott Guenthner, $186,727; 6. Tyler Pearson, $172,991; 7. Ty Erickson, $170,880; 8. Hunter Cure, $167,890; 9. Blake Knowles, $162,669; 10. Nick Guy, $152,821; 11. Jacob Talley, $145,717; 12. Kyle Irwin, $139,416; 13. Riley Duvall, $128,258; 14. Blake Mindemann, $127,650; 15. Tanner Brunner, $98,193. 

Team roping: 1. Tyler Wade/Cole Davison, 3.9 seconds, $26,231 each; 2. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 4.1, $20,731; 3. Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 4.4, $15,654; 4. (tie) Bubba Buckaloo/Chase Tryan and Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 4.9, $8,885; 6. Riley Minor/Brady Minor, 5, $4,231; 7. Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, 5.1; 8. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 5.3; 9. Dustin Egusquiza/Kory Koontz, 9.3; 10. (tie) Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison and Derrick Begay/Cory Petska, 10.1; 12. Luke Brown/Jake Long, 13.8; 13. Rhen Richard/Quinn Kesler, Erich Rogers/Clint Summers and Lane Ivy/Buddy Hawkins II, NT. Average standings: 1. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 69.6 seconds on 10 head, $67,269 each; 2. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 45.5, $54,577; 3. Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 34.5 on eight, $43,154; 4. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 58.2, $31,731; 5. Derrick Begay/Cory Petska, 60, $22,846; 6. Rhen Richard/Quinn Kesler, 73.6, $16,500; 7. Erich Rogers/Clint Summers, 50.9 on seven, $11,423; 8. Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison, 80.1, $6,346. World standings (headers): 1. Clay Smith, $289,921; 2. Kaleb Driggers, $272,464; 3. Aaron Tsinigine, $212,506; 4. Cody Snow, $196,773; 5. Bubba Buckaloo, $194,836; 6. Derrick Begay, $193,626; 7. Luke Brown, $154,237; 8. Dustin Egusquiza, $145,518; 9. Riley Minor, $143,592; 10. Chad Masters, $142,304; 11. Tyler Wade, $135,607; 12. Clay Tryan, $122,785; 13. Lane Ivy, $118,919; 14. Erich Rogers, $116,643; 15. Rhen Richard, $113,520. World standings (heelers): 1. Paul Eaves, $289,921; 2. Junior Nogueira, $273,448; 3. Trey Yates, $226,900; 4. Cory Petska, $200,082; 5. Wesley Thorp, $193,084; 6. Chase Tryan, $174,252; 7. Joseph Harrison, $161,477; 8. Jake Long, $154,237; 9. Kory Koontz, $145,518; 10. Brady Minor, $142,400; 11. Cole Davison, $128,713; 12. Clint Summers, $127,755; 13. Travis Graves, $118,928; 14. Buddy Hawkins II, $115,913; 15. Quinn Kesler, $109,637.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. CoBurn Bradshaw, 92 points on Frontier Rodeo’s Medicine Woman, $26,231; 2. (tie) Jake Wright and Isaac Diaz, 88.5, $18,192 each; 4. Wade Sundell, 87.5, $11,000; 5. Joey Sonnier III, 86.5, $6,769; 6. Cort Scheer, 86, $4,231; 7. Brody Cress, 85; 7. Sterling Crawley, 85; 9. Jacobs Crawley, 80; 10. Clay Elliott, Rusty Wright, Zeke Thurston, Taos Muncy, Chase Brooks and Ryder Wright, NS. Average standings: 1. CoBurn Bradshaw, 848.5 points on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Wade Sundell, 783.5 points on nine, $54,577; 3. Zeke Thurston, 693.5 on eight, $43,154; 4. Cort Scheer, 688, $31,731; 5. Rusty Wright, 687, $22,846; 6. Jacobs Crawley, 661, $16,500; 7. Clay Elliott, 511.5 on six, $11,423; 8. Isaac Diaz, 508.5, $6,346. World standings: 1. Wade Sundell, $280,636; 2. Rusty Wright, $262,434; 3. Zeke Thurston, $262,041; 4. CoBurn Bradshaw, $256,710; 5. Ryder Wright, $243,194; 6. Cort Scheer, $238,977; 7. Jacobs Crawley, $231,831; 8. Isaac Diaz, $201,163; 9. Chase Brooks, $168,641; 10. Clay Elliott, $148,868; 11. Jake Wright, $146,480; 12. Brody Cress, $121,588; 13. Sterling Crawley, $108,748; 14. Joey Sonnier III, $102,653; 15. Taos Muncy, $90,906. 

Tie-down roping: 1. Trevor Brazile , 7.2 seconds, $26,231; 2. (tie) Cooper Martin and Jake Pratt, 7.4, $18,192 each; 4. Shane Hanchey, 7.6, $11,000; 5. Matt Shiozawa, 7.7, $6,769; 6. (tie) Caleb Smidt and Ryle Smith, 8.1, $2,115; 6. Caleb Smidt, 8.1, $2,115; 8. Tyson Durfey, 8.8; 9. Rhen Richard, 9.3; 10. Reese Riemer, 9.6; 11. Cory Solomon, 11.7; 12. Marty Yates, 17.3, 13. Sterling Smith, Ryan Jarrett and Tuf Cooper, NT. Average standings: 1. Caleb Smidt, 83.7 seconds on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Rhen Richard, 88.5, $54,577; 3. Matt Shiozawa, 94.4, $43,154; 4. Ryle Smith, 101, $31,731; 5. Reese Riemer, 106.3, $22,846; 6. Cooper Martin, 107.1, $16,500; 7. Trevor Brazile, 114.1, $11,423; 8. Tyson Durfey, 80.3 on nine, $6,346. World standings: 1. Caleb Smidt, $232,817; 2. Tuf Cooper, $205,268; 3. Trevor Brazile, $194,297; 4. Tyson Durfey, $194,056; 5. Matt Shiozawa, $193,576; 6. Ryle Smith, $186,903; 7. Reese Riemer, $182,300; 8. Shane Hanchey, $180,847; 9. Jake Pratt, $179,108; 10. Rhen Richard, $172,629; 11. Ryan Jarrett, $168,077; 12. Marty Yates, $166,502; 13. Cooper Martin, $162,861; 14. Sterling Smith, $158,609; 15. Cory Solomon, $115,502. 

Barrel racing: 1. Kylie Weast, 13.37 seconds, $26,231; 2. Amberleigh Moore, 13.65, $20,731; 3. Carman Pozzobon, 13.68, $15,654; 4. Jessica Routier, 13.73, $11,000; 5. Taci Bettis, 13.74, $6,769; 6. Ivy Conrado, 13.79, $4,231; 7. Stevi Hillman, 13.86; 8. Jessie Telford, 13.92; 9. Hailey Kinsel, 13.95; 10. Kelly Bruner, 14.01; 11. Tammy Fischer, 14.12; 12. Tracy Nowlin, 18.66; 13. Nellie Miller, 18.85; 14. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 19.24; 15. Lisa Lockhart, 28.62. Average standings: 1. Carman Pozzobon, 139.46 seconds on 10 runs, $67,269; 2. Jessica Routier, 142.6, $54,577; 3. Jessie Telford, 143.13, $43,154; 4. Stevi Hillman, 143.84, $31,731; 5. Tammy Fischer, 144.64, $22,846; 6. Amberleigh Moore, 146.71, $16,500; 7. Hailey Kinsel, 147.61, $11,423; 8. Ivy Conrado, 148.30, $6,346. World standings: 1. Hailey Kinsel, $350,700; 2. Jessica Routier, $251,704; 3. Amberleigh Moore, $246,357; 4. Carman Pozzobon, $204,831; 5. Jessie Telford, $201,573; 6. Ivy Conrado, $196,385; 7. Taci Bettis, $191,538; 8. Nellie Miller, $188,134; 9. Stevi Hillman, $184,751; 10. Kylie Weast, $173,484; 11. Lisa Lockhart, $170,746; 12. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, $162,920; 13. Tammy Fischer, $130,892; 14. Kelly Bruner, 129,708; 15. Tracy Nowlin, $116,150.

Bull riding: 1. Sage Kimzey, 93 points on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Record Rack’s Shootin’ Stars, $33,564; 2. Cole Melancon, 91, $28,064; 3. Chase Dougherty, 82.5, $22,987; 4. Parker Breding, Jeff Askey, Tyler Bingham, Dustin Bouquet, Roscoe Jarboe, Boudreaux Campbell, Garrett Tribble, Joe Frost, Eli Vastbinder, Koby Radley, Trevor Kastner, Trey Benton III, NS. Average standings: 1. Chase Dougherty, 603.5 points on seven head, $232,750; 2. Joe Frost, 436.5 on five, $155,891; 3. Jeff Askey, 424, $118,237; 4. Roscoe Jarboe, 404, $104,064; 5. Sage Kimzey, 347 on four, $118,237; 6. Parker Breding, 330.5, $56,256; 7. Dustin Bouquet, 262.5 on three, $82,346; 8. Garrett Tribble, 262, $78,256. World standings: 1. Sage Kimzey, $415,263; 2. Chase Dougherty, $342,099; 3. Joe Frost, $252,054; 4. Parker Breding, $241,732; 5. Jeff Askey, $225,624; 6. Roscoe Jarboe, $213,801; 7. Dustin Bouquet, $196,934; 8. Garrett Tribble, $180,482; 9. Eli Vastbinder, $173,371; 10. Koby Radley, $160,072; 11. Tyler Bingham, $146,910; 12. Trey Benton III, $141,393; 13. Cole Melancon, $138,038; 14. Boudreaux Campbell, $135,469; 15. Trevor Kastner, $104,396. 

All-around world standings: 1. Trevor Brazile, $335,680; 2. Tuf Cooper, $310,357; 3. Rhen Richard, $274,724; 4. Steven Dent; $254,321; 5. Ryle Smith, $203,409; 6. Curtis Cassidy, $175,583.

RAM Top Gun standings: 1. Chase Dougherty, $209,058; 2. Tyler Waguespack, $180,429; 3. Wade Sundell, $177,327; 4. (tie) Paul Eaves and Clay Smith, $174,577; 6. CoBurn Bradshaw, $167,385; 7. Hailey Kinsel, $157,865; 8. (tie) Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira, $157,513; 10. Amberleigh Moore, $157,231.       

Kimzey wins fifth straight bull riding title; Brazile wins 14th all-around title

LAS VEGAS – The 60th edition of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo proved to be historic. And not just because it marked 60 years of the Finals crowning world champions.

Trevor Brazile won his PRCA-record 14th All-Around gold buckle, adding to his ever-growing record of PRCA championships, this one No. 24, in front of 17,150 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas, Saturday, Dec. 15. 

Meanwhile, Sage Kimzey became the first bull rider in the NFR era to win five consecutive world championships. ProRodeo Hall of Famer Jim Shoulders won six consecutive bull riding world titles, but that was before the NFR began. 

“Anytime your name is by Jim Shoulders’ you are in a league you can’t put into words,” said Kimzey, 24. “He is one of the greatest cowboys of all time and it means the world to me.”

Kimzey’s fifth bull riding world title also puts him in precious company. Only four other bull riders have won at least five – Don Gay won eight, Shoulders seven, and Smokey Snyder and Harry Tompkins each won five.

Kimzey was banged up throughout the Finals, and that reflected in the fact that he rode four bulls. But Kimzey saved the best for last. 

Hopping on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Record Rack’s Shootin’ Stars, Kimzey posted a 93-point ride. Making it more impressive was the fact that Kimzey was bruised and battered.

“This year was tough, it was just sheer grit and determination from the start of the year,” he said. “It started with a fractured pelvis, and it was a 365-day grind. Going into here with a big lead, then getting hurt in the first round – it was a brutal 10 days and it was hard to get out of bed.”

While Kimzey’s career continues to flourish, Brazile announced before the Finals started that the 2018 season marked the last time he would rodeo full time. Brazile is going to an abbreviated schedule in 2019 to spend more time with his family.

Then he went out and won his 14th All-Around title, and he did it by winning Round 10 of the tie-down roping in 7.2 seconds. It was his 71st career go-round win at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo – in tie-down roping and team roping – and National Finals Steer Roping. Yet another record.

“When I came into Round 10, I was honestly so thankful that I had another chance,” Brazile said. “It wasn’t maybe the best chance. I had to win the round and do some certain things, but it was at least a chance, and as a competitor that’s all you can ask for.”

Brazile entered Round 10 trailing his brother-in-law Tuf Cooper by a little more than $12,000. Cooper won the All-Around title in 2017.

 “It’s a really unique situation because I love him so much, and I’m his biggest fan, too,” Brazile said of Cooper. “It’s a crazy dynamic that we’ve lived for so long, but I can’t wait to just set back and be able to watch him instead of competing against him.” 

And while some say Brazile should keep going as hard as ever, especially after the win, that’s not his thinking.

“The first question everybody wants to ask is you can’t go out now,” he said. “But, the competitor in me, this is the only way to go out. It was hard to swallow the other scenarios. I hadn’t roped well this week, and I ended up with three round wins. But I also ended up with three two loops, and that’s the most I’ve ever had. It couldn’t have ended any better.”

The 10-day attendance for the Wrangler NFR was 169,171.

O’Connell battles to win third consecutive bareback riding title

Two-time defending bareback riding champion Tim O’Connell came into the 2018 Wrangler NFR with the slimmest margin in the world standings he’d had over the last three years.

He saw that lead of $14,822 vanish by Round 7 of the Finals, with Caleb Bennett moving into first.

But O’Connell wasn’t ready to relinquish his title of world champion just yet.

O’Connell split the aggregate with Steven Dent to propel the Zwingle, Iowa, cowboy to his third consecutive world championship with $319,801.

“It’s surreal,” said O’Connell, who didn’t move into first place in the world standings until August. “It was a battle from Day 1. The season started slow, it picked up. It was a fight through the end of the season. It came down to me leaving it all on the line when it came down to the 10th round.”

Only seven bareback riders have won four or more world championships.

O’Connell vowed to treat the last two rounds like it was the third period of a wrestling match. He went out and won Round 9. Then in Round 10, he posted an 87-point ride on J Bar J’s All Pink to split fifth and earn the tie in the aggregate. O’Connell got thrown off after the whistle and landed awkwardly. He eventually walked off under his own power though. Nothing was going to keep him from getting that third gold buckle.

“I knew when I nodded my head, I was going to leave it all out there,” said O’Connell, 27. “Obviously, the chaos at the end showed it. Luckily, God left me with some safety. I might be a little banged up. It feels so much different. I had to fight. You guys had to see me fight.”

Smith/Eaves claim first team roping world titles

Clay Smith and Paul Eaves went out in the best way possible together.

The duo who decided before the Wrangler Finals kicked off Dec. 6 to go their separate ways on the rodeo trail, put together a team roping championship run.

Team roping header Smith and team roping heeler Eaves stopped the clock in 4.4 seconds in Round 10 to clinch third in the aggregate and win their respective world championships with $289,921 each. 

They each cashed in for $174,577 at the Finals. Their third-place aggregate finish was 34.5 seconds on eight head. Aaron Tsinigine and Trey Yates won the average with 69.6 seconds on 10 head.

“It’s everything we’ve worked for,” said Smith, 27.

“It’s what we’ve wanted since we were young,” said Eaves, 28. “It’s unbelievable.”

Smith and Eaves missed in Round 1, but rebounded immediately, winning Round 2. They placed in Round 3 and won Round 5. They placed in four of the last five rounds.

“We just stayed aggressive and tried to win something on every one of them,” said Smith, of Broken Bow, Okla.

The two have clicked together since they started together.

“It’s not just one thing, it’s a lot of things,” said Eaves, of Millsap, Texas. “The way he (Smith) ropes is aggressive and can catch. He’s got really good horses, and that’s a huge deal.”

But the two are parting ways for the 2019 season. 

“It’s just time for a change,” Eaves said.

Powered by second average crown, Waguespack claims second world title

Tyler Waguespack opened the 2018 Wrangler NFR with a Round 1 victory. He closed it with a world title.

The 28-year-old, Gonzales, La., cowboy claimed his second world championship in three years with $260,013. 

Waguespack spurred the victory with his aggregate win – 44.5 seconds on 10 head.

“This feels just like the first one,” he said. “We worked hard all year and it all paid off.”

Waguespack entered the Finals in 10th place. He trailed regular-season leader Curtis Cassidy by $26,425 when the Finals opened.

He won Rounds 1 and 8 and placed in five others. Over the 10 days, Waguespack won $180,429.

After winning Round 9, Waguespack knew the world title was well within reach. He didn’t crunch numbers, but he did know it was just a matter of taking care of business. 

“I knew after the ninth round if I could go in and win the average that the world title would take care of itself,” Waguespack said. “I was just making sure to go out there and make a good, solid run in the last round and get the job done.”

Having been there before, Waguespack understood what it took to win a world title. He also got some of the best advice from 24-time world champion Trevor Brazile.

“You know, man, I think Trevor Brazile said it the best, he described the NFR as a marathon and it’s a marathon you have to sprint 10 nights in a row,” Waguespack said.

Waguespack has plans for both of his world championship gold buckles.

“I’m going to keep my first one, I’m pretty sure,” he said, “and for sure I’m going to see if my dad will wear the second one.”

It’s buckle No. 2 for tie-down roper Caleb Smidt

For the second time in his career, Caleb Smidt is a world champion.

The tie-down roper from Bellville, Texas, won the 2018 gold buckle with $232,817, capping it off by winning the average with 83.7 seconds on 10 head. The average win cashed for $67,269.

Smidt’s previous world title (it also included the average title) came in 2015. Smidt’s newest title is the one he’s most proud of.

“This is awesome,” said Smidt, 29. “It has been a few years, but this one means a lot more to me than the first one. The first one I was young, and I was just roping. I came out here to rope and do it for my family. To have another world championship and average championship is awesome.”

Smidt’s only round win of the 2018 Finals came in Round 1. But that kicked off his Finals with a jumpstart. After that, he placed in four other rounds. 

“I started off good, placed in the first three rounds and won the first round,” he said. “I got some money bottled up there. The second half (the final five rounds) I was just getting them turned around, tying them down, and that’s what won me the average.”

He also just kept catching. 

“I wanted to do the same thing I’ve been doing all week,” Smidt said. “I got good starts and drew some really good calves. Tonight, I had one that was an OK calf and the horse was good. I’m just glad to be right here, right now.”

Smidt was riding Pockets.

“Pockets is 11 years old, and I have had him for four years,” Smidt said. “I won the world on him in 2015. He’s awesome. I didn’t ride him all summer. I rode a couple calves on him before I came out here (to the NFR), and he made it easy enough for me. We’ve got two gold buckles.”

Sundell wins first world title at 33

Wade Sundell qualified for the saddle bronc riding for the Wrangler Finals every year between 2007 and 2015. 

He didn’t make the Finals again until 2018. And this year wasn’t easy, as the 33-year-old’s house burned down over the summer.

But Sundell won $177,327 at the Finals to propel him to his first gold buckle with $280,636.

“Words can’t explain it, it’s amazing,” he said. “I’ve been trying to do it since the first time here, but I’m glad it came and hope there’s more to come.”

Sundell focused on getting back to Las Vegas. He accomplished that, getting in with the eighth-most money won among saddle bronc riders. He trailed regular-season leader Jacobs Crawley by $64,792.

But Sundell chipped away at the leaders. He just kept riding. He placed in the first three rounds, won Round 5, placed in Round 6, split the win in Round 7 and placed in the last two rounds.

He claims he did nothing different from what he’s always done.

“Just go day by day and do what you’ve been doing your whole life – keep your chin down and have fun riding bucking horses.”

Sundell already has plans for all the money he won.

“Life will do that to you,” he said about his housefire. “But keep your chin up – there’s no sense in being a Sally. … (I will) rebuild the house.”

As for his immediate plans.

“Go home and relax,” he said.

Kinsel cruises to first world title

With her first gold buckle already in hand, barrel racer Hailey Kinsel switched to her backup horse and cruised in Round 10.

Kinsel won with a WPRA single-season record $350,700. She wrapped up the world championship following her Round 9 victory.

“We had (the world championship) won, and I could have run (Sister) to try for that Top Gun deal, but she owes me nothing,” Kinsel said. “We accomplished our main goal, and we are getting ready for 2019. So, she had the night off and I ran my backup horse, TJ. He proved that he deserves to be here, too.”

Kinsel finished seventh in the aggregate, winning four rounds along the way. She may have clinched a night early, but she didn’t get her gold buckle officially until after Round 10.

“I love it,” she said. “It’s outstanding. We’ve dreamed to have this, and it’s even more than I could have imagined.”

Dougherty wins RAM Top Gun Award

Bull rider Chase Dougherty, a newcomer to the Wrangler NFR, won the RAM Top Gun Award, given to the competitor who wins the most money in the Finals in one event.

Dougherty won $209,058 over the 10-nights of the Finals. 

Steer wrestler Tyler Waguespack was second with $180,429. 

As the winner, Dougherty was awarded a 2019 RAM 3500 Heavy Duty Truck. He also received A RAM Top Gun-branded gun from Commemorative Firearms, as well as a custom Top Gun buckle from Montana Silversmiths. 

60th annual Wrangler National Finals Rodeo

10th Performance Results, Saturday, Dec. 15, 2018

Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nev.

Bareback riding: 1. Tilden Hooper, 89.5 points on Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Scarlett’s Web, $26,231; 2. (tie) Clayton Biglow and Richmond Champion, 88.5, $18,192 each; 4. Shane O’Connell, 87.5, $11,000; 5. (tie) Tim O’Connell and Kaycee Feild, 87, $5,500 each; 7. Mason Clements, 85.5; 8. Steven Dent, 84.5; 9. Orin Larsen, 83.5; 10. Wyatt Denny, 73; 11. (tie) Caleb Bennett, Jake Brown, NS; 13. Ty Breuer, Will Lowe and Bill Tutor, INJ. Average standings: 1. (tie) Tim O’Connell and Steven Dent, 849.5 points on 10 head, $60,923 each; 3. Tilden Hooper, 846.5, $43,154; 4. Kaycee Feild, 844, $31,731; 5. Richmond Champion, 842.5, $22,846; 6. Shane O’Connell, 839.5, $16,500; 7. Clayton Biglow, 772 points on nine head, $11,423; 8. Orin Larsen, 768, $6,346. World standings: 1. Tim O’Connell, $319,801; 2. Steven Dent, $254,733; 3. Tilden Hooper, $245,583; 4. Clayton Biglow, $245,435; 5. Richmond Champion, $243,345; 6. Caleb Bennett, $240,390; 7. Kaycee Feild, $231,445; 8. Orin Larsen, $222,732; 9. Mason Clements, $170,318; 10. Shane O’Connell, $161,451; 11. Bill Tutor, $154,162; 12. Ty Breuer, $127,789; 13. Jake Brown, $119,300; 14. Wyatt Denny, $117,958; 15. Will Lowe, $91,517. 

Steer wrestling: 1. Nick Guy, 3.7 seconds, $26,231; 2. (tie) Hunter Cure, Bridger Chambers and Ty Erickson, 4.6, $15,795 each; 5. Tyler Pearson, 4.7, $6,769; 6. Jacob Talley, 4.8, $4,231; 7. (tie) Will Lummus and Blake Mindemann, 5; 9. Tyler Waguespack, 5.1; 10. Kyle Irwin, 5.3; 11. Scott Guenthner, 5.4; 12. Blake Knowles, 8.3; 13. Riley Duvall, 10.1; 14. Curtis Cassidy and Tanner Brunner, NT. Average standings: 1. Tyler Waguespack, 44.5 seconds on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Bridger Chambers, 57.2, $54,577; 3. Blake Knowles, 68.2, $43,154; 4. Riley Duvall, 77.1, $31,731; 5. Nick Guy, 85.5, $22,846; 6. Will Lummus, 38 seconds on nine head, $16,500; 7. Scott Guenthner, 38.9, 11,423; 8. Hunter Cure, 40.5, $6,346. World standings: 1.Tyler Waguespack, $260,013; 2. Bridger Chambers, $216,762; 3. Will Lummus, $195,182; 4. Curtis Cassidy, $188,355; 5. Scott Guenthner, $186,727; 6. Tyler Pearson, $172,991; 7. Ty Erickson, $170,880; 8. Hunter Cure, $167,890; 9. Blake Knowles, $162,669; 10. Nick Guy, $152,821; 11. Jacob Talley, $145,717; 12. Kyle Irwin, $139,416; 13. Riley Duvall, $128,258; 14. Blake Mindemann, $127,650; 15. Tanner Brunner, $98,193. 

Team roping: 1. Tyler Wade/Cole Davison, 3.9 seconds, $26,231 each; 2. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 4.1, $20,731; 3. Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 4.4, $15,654; 4. (tie) Bubba Buckaloo/Chase Tryan and Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 4.9, $8,885; 6. Riley Minor/Brady Minor, 5, $4,231; 7. Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, 5.1; 8. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 5.3; 9. Dustin Egusquiza/Kory Koontz, 9.3; 10. (tie) Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison and Derrick Begay/Cory Petska, 10.1; 12. Luke Brown/Jake Long, 13.8; 13. Rhen Richard/Quinn Kesler, Erich Rogers/Clint Summers and Lane Ivy/Buddy Hawkins II, NT. Average standings: 1. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 69.6 seconds on 10 head, $67,269 each; 2. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 45.5, $54,577; 3. Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 34.5 on eight, $43,154; 4. Cody Snow/Wesley Thorp, 58.2, $31,731; 5. Derrick Begay/Cory Petska, 60, $22,846; 6. Rhen Richard/Quinn Kesler, 73.6, $16,500; 7. Erich Rogers/Clint Summers, 50.9 on seven, $11,423; 8. Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison, 80.1, $6,346. World standings (headers): 1. Clay Smith, $289,921; 2. Kaleb Driggers, $272,464; 3. Aaron Tsinigine, $212,506; 4. Cody Snow, $196,773; 5. Bubba Buckaloo, $194,836; 6. Derrick Begay, $193,626; 7. Luke Brown, $154,237; 8. Dustin Egusquiza, $145,518; 9. Riley Minor, $143,592; 10. Chad Masters, $142,304; 11. Tyler Wade, $135,607; 12. Clay Tryan, $122,785; 13. Lane Ivy, $118,919; 14. Erich Rogers, $116,643; 15. Rhen Richard, $113,520. World standings (heelers): 1. Paul Eaves, $289,921; 2. Junior Nogueira, $273,448; 3. Trey Yates, $226,900; 4. Cory Petska, $200,082; 5. Wesley Thorp, $193,084; 6. Chase Tryan, $174,252; 7. Joseph Harrison, $161,477; 8. Jake Long, $154,237; 9. Kory Koontz, $145,518; 10. Brady Minor, $142,400; 11. Cole Davison, $128,713; 12. Clint Summers, $127,755; 13. Travis Graves, $118,928; 14. Buddy Hawkins II, $115,913; 15. Quinn Kesler, $109,637.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. CoBurn Bradshaw, 92 points on Frontier Rodeo’s Medicine Woman, $26,231; 2. (tie) Jake Wright and Isaac Diaz, 88.5, $18,192 each; 4. Wade Sundell, 87.5, $11,000; 5. Joey Sonnier III, 86.5, $6,769; 6. Cort Scheer, 86, $4,231; 7. Brody Cress, 85; 7. Sterling Crawley, 85; 9. Jacobs Crawley, 80; 10. Clay Elliott, Rusty Wright, Zeke Thurston, Taos Muncy, Chase Brooks and Ryder Wright, NS. Average standings: 1. CoBurn Bradshaw, 848.5 points on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Wade Sundell, 783.5 points on nine, $54,577; 3. Zeke Thurston, 693.5 on eight, $43,154; 4. Cort Scheer, 688, $31,731; 5. Rusty Wright, 687, $22,846; 6. Jacobs Crawley, 661, $16,500; 7. Clay Elliott, 511.5 on six, $11,423; 8. Isaac Diaz, 508.5, $6,346. World standings: 1. Wade Sundell, $280,636; 2. Rusty Wright, $262,434; 3. Zeke Thurston, $262,041; 4. CoBurn Bradshaw, $256,710; 5. Ryder Wright, $243,194; 6. Cort Scheer, $238,977; 7. Jacobs Crawley, $231,831; 8. Isaac Diaz, $201,163; 9. Chase Brooks, $168,641; 10. Clay Elliott, $148,868; 11. Jake Wright, $146,480; 12. Brody Cress, $121,588; 13. Sterling Crawley, $108,748; 14. Joey Sonnier III, $102,653; 15. Taos Muncy, $90,906. 

Tie-down roping: 1. Trevor Brazile , 7.2 seconds, $26,231; 2. (tie) Cooper Martin and Jake Pratt, 7.4, $18,192 each; 4. Shane Hanchey, 7.6, $11,000; 5. Matt Shiozawa, 7.7, $6,769; 6. (tie) Caleb Smidt and Ryle Smith, 8.1, $2,115; 6. Caleb Smidt, 8.1, $2,115; 8. Tyson Durfey, 8.8; 9. Rhen Richard, 9.3; 10. Reese Riemer, 9.6; 11. Cory Solomon, 11.7; 12. Marty Yates, 17.3, 13. Sterling Smith, Ryan Jarrett and Tuf Cooper, NT. Average standings: 1. Caleb Smidt, 83.7 seconds on 10 head, $67,269; 2. Rhen Richard, 88.5, $54,577; 3. Matt Shiozawa, 94.4, $43,154; 4. Ryle Smith, 101, $31,731; 5. Reese Riemer, 106.3, $22,846; 6. Cooper Martin, 107.1, $16,500; 7. Trevor Brazile, 114.1, $11,423; 8. Tyson Durfey, 80.3 on nine, $6,346. World standings: 1. Caleb Smidt, $232,817; 2. Tuf Cooper, $205,268; 3. Trevor Brazile, $194,297; 4. Tyson Durfey, $194,056; 5. Matt Shiozawa, $193,576; 6. Ryle Smith, $186,903; 7. Reese Riemer, $182,300; 8. Shane Hanchey, $180,847; 9. Jake Pratt, $179,108; 10. Rhen Richard, $172,629; 11. Ryan Jarrett, $168,077; 12. Marty Yates, $166,502; 13. Cooper Martin, $162,861; 14. Sterling Smith, $158,609; 15. Cory Solomon, $115,502. 

Barrel racing: 1. Kylie Weast, 13.37 seconds, $26,231; 2. Amberleigh Moore, 13.65, $20,731; 3. Carman Pozzobon, 13.68, $15,654; 4. Jessica Routier, 13.73, $11,000; 5. Taci Bettis, 13.74, $6,769; 6. Ivy Conrado, 13.79, $4,231; 7. Stevi Hillman, 13.86; 8. Jessie Telford, 13.92; 9. Hailey Kinsel, 13.95; 10. Kelly Bruner, 14.01; 11. Tammy Fischer, 14.12; 12. Tracy Nowlin, 18.66; 13. Nellie Miller, 18.85; 14. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 19.24; 15. Lisa Lockhart, 28.62. Average standings: 1. Carman Pozzobon, 139.46 seconds on 10 runs, $67,269; 2. Jessica Routier, 142.6, $54,577; 3. Jessie Telford, 143.13, $43,154; 4. Stevi Hillman, 143.84, $31,731; 5. Tammy Fischer, 144.64, $22,846; 6. Amberleigh Moore, 146.71, $16,500; 7. Hailey Kinsel, 147.61, $11,423; 8. Ivy Conrado, 148.30, $6,346. World standings: 1. Hailey Kinsel, $350,700; 2. Jessica Routier, $251,704; 3. Amberleigh Moore, $246,357; 4. Carman Pozzobon, $204,831; 5. Jessie Telford, $201,573; 6. Ivy Conrado, $196,385; 7. Taci Bettis, $191,538; 8. Nellie Miller, $188,134; 9. Stevi Hillman, $184,751; 10. Kylie Weast, $173,484; 11. Lisa Lockhart, $170,746; 12. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, $162,920; 13. Tammy Fischer, $130,892; 14. Kelly Bruner, 129,708; 15. Tracy Nowlin, $116,150.

Bull riding: 1. Sage Kimzey, 93 points on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Record Rack’s Shootin’ Stars, $33,564; 2. Cole Melancon, 91, $28,064; 3. Chase Dougherty, 82.5, $22,987; 4. Parker Breding, Jeff Askey, Tyler Bingham, Dustin Bouquet, Roscoe Jarboe, Boudreaux Campbell, Garrett Tribble, Joe Frost, Eli Vastbinder, Koby Radley, Trevor Kastner, Trey Benton III, NS. Average standings: 1. Chase Dougherty, 603.5 points on seven head, $232,750; 2. Joe Frost, 436.5 on five, $155,891; 3. Jeff Askey, 424, $118,237; 4. Roscoe Jarboe, 404, $104,064; 5. Sage Kimzey, 347 on four, $118,237; 6. Parker Breding, 330.5, $56,256; 7. Dustin Bouquet, 262.5 on three, $82,346; 8. Garrett Tribble, 262, $78,256. World standings: 1. Sage Kimzey, $415,263; 2. Chase Dougherty, $342,099; 3. Joe Frost, $252,054; 4. Parker Breding, $241,732; 5. Jeff Askey, $225,624; 6. Roscoe Jarboe, $213,801; 7. Dustin Bouquet, $196,934; 8. Garrett Tribble, $180,482; 9. Eli Vastbinder, $173,371; 10. Koby Radley, $160,072; 11. Tyler Bingham, $146,910; 12. Trey Benton III, $141,393; 13. Cole Melancon, $138,038; 14. Boudreaux Campbell, $135,469; 15. Trevor Kastner, $104,396. 

All-around world standings: 1. Trevor Brazile, $335,680; 2. Tuf Cooper, $310,357; 3. Rhen Richard, $274,724; 4. Steven Dent; $254,321; 5. Ryle Smith, $203,409; 6. Curtis Cassidy, $175,583.

RAM Top Gun standings: 1. Chase Dougherty, $209,058; 2. Tyler Waguespack, $180,429; 3. Wade Sundell, $177,327; 4. (tie) Paul Eaves and Clay Smith, $174,577; 6. CoBurn Bradshaw, $167,385; 7. Hailey Kinsel, $157,865; 8. (tie) Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira, $157,513; 10. Amberleigh Moore, $157,231.       

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NFR – ROUND 8

Posted by on Dec 16, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, HORSE ORGANIZATIONS, INDUSTRY NEWS, MAJOR EVENTS, RODEO & BULLRIDING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

Courtesy PRCA
Dec. 14, 2018

Waguespack takes over steer wrestling lead 
LAS VEGAS – Tyler Waguespack knows what it takes to win the steer wrestling world title. He proved that in 2016. He’s showing it again at the 2018 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.Waguespack stopped the clock in 3.7
seconds to earn his second round victory of the Finals in front of 16,929
fans during Round 8 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas,
Thursday, Dec. 13. The win also moved Waguespack into first place in the 2018 PRCA | RAM World Standings.

“We’re going to keep taking it one steer at a time and do the best we can
on whatever we draw,” said Waguespack, of Gonzales, La. Waguespack is riding Scooter, the 2017 and 2018 PRCA | AQHA Horse of the Year for
steer wrestling. The horse, owned by Tyler Pearson and Kyle Irwin, is a
key reason for Waguespack’s success, he said.
“Every time you back in the box, you always feel like you have a good
chance because you know you’re riding the best one there is,” Wagues-pack said.
Waguespack is up to $192,744, with $113,160 of that coming from the
Wrangler NFR. In  addition to being first in the world standings, he’s
second in the aggregate in 34.3 seconds on eight head. Curtis
Cassidy is second in the world standings with $188,356. Will Lummus is
third in the world standings with $178,682. He’s first in the average with
33.0 seconds on eight head.

But Waguespack isn’t counting on anything yet.

“I try not to get nervous, but in the back of your mind it’s always going to be there,” he said. “It absolutely helps that I have been through this
before and won (the world championship). It takes some of the pressure off, but still, it is the world title, so you’re going to have pressure on you
the whole time.”

When Waguespack saw which steer he had drawn, he knew he could be
in the money.

“Tyler Pearson had that steer in the second round and won the
round (with a 3.8-second time),” Waguespack said. “I was very pleased
with the draw. That steer I didn’t think was going to leave as sharp as the rest of them in the herd, and it is impressive on Scooter’s part because we have been taking really, really sharp starts all week long. He (Scooter) let me back off it just enough to get a decent start on that steer and make a   great run on him.” 

Shane O’Connell wins first Wrangler NFR go-round
Shane O’Connell knew not to get discouraged through the first seven
rounds of his debut trip to the Wrangler NFR.He knew he was doing what he needed to do. Eventually it would pay off. That pay off came Thursday night, as O’Connell rode Powder River Rodeo’s Black Leg for 89 points
and the Round 8 victory.“I’ve been wanting that real bad,” said O’Connell, 23. “I’ve been making great rides all week, and to finally get into some
good money it goes to show that if you keep persevering and keep doing  things the same it’s going to pay off in the end. You just got to keep riding and keep doing your best.”O’Connell placed in the money twice and
finished seventh – one spot out of the money – three times. He had faith
his skills would eventually lead him to the South Point for the buckle
presentation.

“I’d get a little frustrated, but then I just had to tell myself that I’m here
for a reason and that I belong here, and that if I keep riding the way I am, they’re going to pay me,” said the South Dakota cowboy.
“I’ve ridden pretty good the whole time. I finished seventh three times,
one place out of the money. Those were all great rides. I mean, 84.5, 85.5, 86.5 didn’t even get me money at some perfs this weekend. That shows
the caliber of guys who are in there.”

The win has O’Connell in 11th place in the world standings with $133,951. Caleb Bennett continues to lead the bareback riding world standings with $240,390. Tim O’Connell, the two-time, defending champion – and no
relation to Shane – is second, $13,243 behind. 

New partners Buckaloo/Tryan stop clock in 3.6 seconds
Back in September, team roping header Bubba Buckaloo and team roping heeler Chase Tryan met up at the Justin Finale at the PRCA | Wrangler
ProRodeo Tour in Puyallup, Wash.With Buckaloo and Tryan in good
position at the time to qualify for the Wrangler NFR but their respective partners not,  both ropers talked about what might happen if they quali-
fied but their partners didn’t.They decided they’d rope together. On
Thursday, that newly formed partnership looked like old teammates, as Buckaloo and Tryan clocked a 3.6-second run to win Round 8 with the
fastest time of the 2018 Finals. The win was the first of their career at the Finals for both ropers.
“It means everything,” said Tryan, who is fourth in the heeling world
standings with $154,367. “We’ve been working at this forever. It’s feels so good.”

Tryan roped with header Brenton Hall this season, while Buckaloo headed for Tyler Worley.Buckaloo is enjoying his first trip to Vegas for the Finals, especially after Thursday night.
“It started out really good, and then I went on a cold streak for the third,
fourth and fifth rounds,” said Buckaloo, who is third in the team roping
heading standings with $174,951.
“Then we got money in Round 6 and I got my confidence back. I just felt
like tonight we had the best steer and we made a good run.”
The duo have jelled pretty quickly, considering Round 8 was their eighth performance together.
“We’d practiced together and both of us have the same type of goals, the
same game plan every night,” Tryan said.
Their confidence is up, and part of that came from some advice via Buck-aloo’s dad.

“After I missed the first one, it got to me a little more, and then I missed
the third one,” Buckaloo said. “I called my dad and he said, ‘You know
what, you shouldn’t worry about it. You’re there for a reason. You’re one of the best.’ That was the biggest motivation for me.’”

Team roping header Clay Smith and partner heeler Paul Eaves continue
to lead the world standings for their respective events. They split second on the evening, which helped them extend their lead. Each of them has
$212,921 on the year. 

Ryan Jarrett heating up in tie-down roping
A slow start for tie-down roper Ryan Jarrett has turned into a hot roll.
Jarrett notched the Round 8 win in 7.3 seconds, his second win in the last four rounds. For him, the momentum is building.

“This feels good for sure that things are going my way a little better,” said Jarrett, 34. (He turns 35 Dec. 28.)

Riding Snoopy, Jarrett cashed in for $26,231. It helped him climb to fifth
in the world standings with $163,847. Jarrett has won $86,295, most
among tie-down ropers. Snoopy, 8, is right at home competing in the
Thomas & Mack Center.

“I brought him last year to the NFR,” said Jarrett, of Comanche, Okla. “All
this year he’s been my No. 1 horse and my No. 2 – he got lots of runs. I
was probably a little too hard on him at times, but he’s been good. Some-
times I think he could be better, but he probably says the same about me. It doesn’t bother him one bit to be in this building.”

Tuf Cooper and Tyson Durfey split for second in the round in 7.4 seconds each. They are first and second, respectively, in the tie-down roping word standings. Cooper leads the way with $191,941, while Durfey is second at $180,941. Jarrett is hoping to gain some more ground.“I want to cash
more checks for sure; that’s all we’re after,” Jarrett said.
 
Bettis notches first Finals win
Barrel racer Taci Bettis has her first go-round win of her Wrangler NFR
career. Bettis and her horse Bogie is a Smash, “Smash” raced to stop the
clock in 13.57 seconds for the win.
“Man, this is good,” Bettis said. “This is my second time out here, so this is 18 times down the alley and still that feeling is so surreal. To finally get a round win is icing on the cake for me.”Bettis struggled through the first
four rounds, hitting barrels on three of those four runs. The last four
rounds she’s cashed checks, amounting during her second Wrangler NFR trip, to $62,885.

“My hauling partner (Tammy Fischer) told me to clear my head and quit over-thinking it,” Bettis said. “I kind of schooled on my horse a little bit
and got him feeling right. I got my mind right. After hitting those barrels
like that, it kind of knocked me down. So, I’ve been trying to get my
mental game back up. So, tonight I finally pulled one out.”

Bettis also had a little fun practice a day earlier.
“A couple of days ago at the convention center, we were riding the little
bike horses and I practiced a victory lap, and I said, ‘I’m going to do it,’”
she joked. “Finally, I get to do it and I get goosebumps.”

After winning back-to-back rounds, world standings leader Hailey Kinsel did not place in Round 8. But she still has a comfortable lead with
$313,046 won. Her lead exceeds $100,000. 

Brooks, Rusty Wright tie in saddle bronc riding
Before the Wrangler NFR, Finals newcomer Chase Brooks had never
made a 90-point ride. Now, he’s got two.Meanwhile, Rusty Wright’s 90-
point ride has him creeping up on his brother and defending Saddle
Bronc Riding World Champion Ryder Wright in the hunt for the 2018
saddle bronc riding gold buckle.

Brooks and Wright tied with 90-point rides Thursday to split the Round 8 win. Brooks made his ride on Dakota Rodeo’s Bartender, while Rusty
Wright made his on Rosser Rodeo’s Floodtide.

“I couldn’t even imagine something this cool,” said Brooks, 24.“These are the only two 90-point rides I’ve ever had, and it’s crazy to do it two nights in a row. You can’t put into words what a 90 feels like.”Rusty Wright won Round 8 in 2015.“I didn’t think about it since I try to win every round,” he said. “Next year, when I get to Round 8, I’ll feel like I have an advantage
since I’ve won two of them.”

Both of them knew they had strong horses that could perform.

“I drew awesome tonight,” Brooks said. “I’ve seen him quite a few times
before and he is showy – I can vouch for that, he is a ton of fun.”

Rusty Wright was equally excited.“Boy, I drew an awesome horse,” said
Rusty Wright, who is competing with broken ribs. “I honestly think that’s one of the best horses going down the road. I actually did an interview a week before the Finals and I said I wanted Floodtide.”

Ryder Wright is still in the lead with $243,194 but won no money Thurs-
day. Rusty Wright is second, $10,375 behind. 

Dougherty, Frost split bull riding; climb in average
Chase Dougherty and Joe Frost have their sights set on winning the bull
riding average. Their chances got better after Round 8.Dougherty and
Frost tied with 89.5-point rides to split the win Thursday.Dougherty made his ride on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Dirty Dan, while Frost was on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Lumberjack.

“I got my hand stuck and scared myself into staying on,” joked Dougherty after winning his second consecutive round. “I had no choice but to hang on and ride. It doesn’t matter what I get on, I got here for a reason, and
there’s no reason not to ride what’s under me.”

Frost had three rides a day earlier, his first ride and two re-rides.

“I got banged up last night on three rides,” Frost said. “Bull riding’s about not letting it affect you. We had our best pen out today, so I had to focus
on the task at hand. Nobody wants to be 58 points at the NFR, but that
would have won me $10,000 (in Round 7), but you have to try to improve when you can and take advantage of re-rides when you get them.”

Entering Round 8, Frost was second in the average and Dougherty was
third. After their rides, Frost is first and Dougherty is second.

60th annual Wrangler National Finals Rodeo
Eighth Performance Results,
Thursday, Dec. 13, 2018
Thomas & Mack Center, Las Vegas, Nev. 

Bareback riding: 1. Shane O’Connell, 89 points on Powder River Rodeo’s Black Leg, $26,231; 2. Mason Clements, 88.5, $20,7301; 3. Orin Larsen, 87, $15,654; 4. Richmond Champion, 86, $11,000; 5. (tie) Kaycee Feild and Clayton Biglow, 85.5, $5,500 each; 7. Tim O’Connell, 84.5; 8. Steven Dent, 84; 9. Tilden Hooper, 79; 10. Caleb Bennett, 78; 11. Ty Breuer, 77.5; 12. Jake
Brown, Wyatt Denny and Will Lowe, NS; 15. Bill Tutor, INJ. 
Average standings: 1. Steven Dent, 681 points on eight head: 2. Tilden
Hooper, 673.5; 3. Tim O’Connell, 672.5; 4. Kaycee Feild, 669.5; 5. Shane
O’Connell, 668; 6. Richmond Champion, 666.5; 7. Caleb Bennett, 651.5; 8.
Orin Larsen, 598 on seven. 
World standings: 1. Caleb Bennett, $240,390; 2. Tim O’Connell, $227,147; 3. Orin Larsen, $207.501; 4. Clayton Biglow,
$206,935; 5. Steven Dent, $193,811; 6. Richmond Champion, $184,114;
7. Tilden Hooper, $176,199; 8. Kaycee Feild, $176,022; 9. Mason Clements; $170,318; 10. Bill Tutor, $154,162; 11. Shane O’Connell, $133,951; 12. Ty
Breuer, $127,789; 13. Jake Brown, $119,300; 14.Wyatt Denny, $113,728; 15. Will Lowe, $91,517. 
Steer wrestling: 1. Tyler Waguespack, 3.7 seconds, $26,231; 2. Bridger
Chambers, 3.8, $20,731; 3. Scott Guenthner, 4.0, $15,654; 4. (tie) Will
Lummus, Jacob Talley, 4.1, $8,885 each; 6. Curtis Cassidy, 4.2, $4,231; 7.
Kyle Irwin, 4.3; 8. (tie) Ty Erickson, Riley Duvall and Tyler Pearson, 4.5; 11. Hunter Cure, 4.6; 12. Blake Knowles, 5.1; 13. Tanner Brunner, 8.2; 14.
Nick Guy, 10.7; 15. Blake Mindemann, NT. Average standings: 1. Will
Lummus, 33.0 seconds on eight head; 2. Tyler Waguespack, 34.3;
3. Bridger Chambers, 47.0; 4. Riley Duvall, 53.4; 5. Blake Knowles, 54.6; 6. Nick Guy, 77.6; 7. Tanner Brunner, 89.5; 8. Scott Guenthner, 29.4 on seven. World standings: 1. Tyler Waguespack, $192,744; 2. Curtis Cassidy,
$188,355; 3. Will Lummus, $178,682; 4. Scott Guenthner, $166,419; 5. Tyler Pearson, $157,337; 6. Bridger Chambers, $146,390; 7. Hunter Cure,
$145,749; 8. Kyle Irwin, $139,416; 9. Ty Erickson, $128,854; 10. Jacob Talley, $125,832; 11. Blake Knowles, $119,515; 12. Blake Mindemann, $106,919; 13. Nick Guy, $99,514; 14. Tanner Brunner, $98,193; 15. Riley Duvall,
$96,528. Team roping: 1. Bubba Buckaloo/Chase Tryan, 3.6 seconds,
$26,231 each; 2. (tie) Dustin Egusquiza/Kory Koontz, Cody Snow/Wesley
Thorp and Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 4.1, $15,795 each; 5. Erich Rogers/Clint Summers, 4.2, $6,769; 6. Rhen Richard/Quinn Kesler, 4.6, $4,231; 7. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Nogueira, 5.2; 8. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 6.1; 9. Lane
Ivy/Buddy Hawkins II, 14.6; 10. Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison, 33.9; 11.
Clay Tryan/Travis Graves, Riley Minor/Brady Minor, Derrick Begay/Cory
Petska, Luke Brown/Jake Long and Tyler Wade/Cole Davison, NT. 
Average standings: 1. Aaron Tsinigine/Trey Yates, 59.4 seconds on eight head; 2. Kaleb Driggers/Junior Noguiera, 37.3 on seven; 3. Rhen Richard
Quinn Kesler, 54.5; 4. Clay Smith/Paul Eaves, 26.0 on six; 5. Cody Snow/
Wesley Thorp, 34.0; 6. Erich Rogers/Clint Summers, 40.3; 7. Derrick Begay/Cory Petska, 46.1; 8. Chad Masters/Joseph Harrison, 70.0. 
World standings (headers): 1. Clay Smith, $212,921; 2. Kaleb Driggers,
$178,964; 3. Bubba Buckaloo, $174,951; 4. Cody Snow, $156,158; 5. Luke
Brown, $154,237; 6. Dustin Egusquiza, $145,518; 7. Derrick Begay,
$144,549; 8. Riley Minor, $139,361; 9. Aaron Tsinigine, $138,468; 10. Chad Masters, $135,958; 11. Clay Tryan, $122,785; 12. Lane Ivy, $114,688; 13.
Tyler Wade, $109,376; 14. Erich Rogers, $105,220; 15. Rhen Richard,
$97,020. 
World standings (heelers): 1. Paul Eaves, $212,921; 2. Junior
Nogueira, $179,948; 3. Joseph Harrison, $155,130; 4. Chase Tryan,
$154,367; 5. Jake Long, $154,237; 6. Trey Yates, $152,862; 7. Wesley Thorp, $152,468; 8. Cory Petska, $151,006; 9. Kory Koontz, $145,518; 10. Brady
Minor, $138,169; 11. Travis Graves, $118,928; 12. Clint Summers,
$116,332; 13. Buddy Hawkins II, $111,682; 14. Cole Davison, $102,482; 15. Quinn Kesler, $93,137. 
Saddle bronc riding: 1. (tie) Rusty Wright, 90 points on Rosser Rodeo’s
Floodtide, Chase Brooks, 90 points on Dakota Rodeo’s Bartender, $23,481 each; 3. CoBurn Bradshaw, 89, $15,654; 4. Clay Elliott, 87.5, $11,000; 5.
Zeke Thurston, 86.5, $6,769; 6. Cort Scheer, 86, $4,231; 7. Wade Sundell,
85.5; 8. Sterling Crawley, 83.5; 9. Jacobs Crawley, Joey Sonnier III, Ryder
Wright, Isaac Diaz, Brody Cress, Jake Wright and Taos Muncy, NS. 
Average standings: 1. CoBurn Bradshaw, 677.5 points on eight head; 2.
Wade Sundell, 608 on seven; 3. Rusty Wright, 605; 4. Zeke Thurston, 603.5; 5. Cort Scheer, 602; 6. Clay Elliott, 511.5 on six; 7. Jacobs Crawley, 498.5; 8. Chase Brooks, 444 on five. 
World standings: 1. Ryder Wright, $243,194; 2. Rusty Wright, $232,819; 3. Jacobs Crawley, $204,331; 4. Cort Scheer, $203,016; 5. Wade Sundell,
$194,330; 6. Zeke Thurston, $192,656; 7. Chase Brooks, $168,641; 8. Isaac
Diaz, $160,970; 9. CoBurn Bradshaw, $158,979; 10. Clay Elliott, $137,445;
11. Jake Wright, $128,287; 12. Brody Cress, $121,588; 13. Sterling Crawley, $108,748; 14. Joey Sonnier III, $95,883; 15. Taos Muncy, $90,906. 
Tie-down roping: 1. Ryan Jarrett, 7.3 seconds, $26,231; 2. (tie) Tyson Durfey and Tuf Cooper, 7.4, $18,192 each: 4. (tie) Jake Pratt, Caleb Smidt, Cory Solomon, and Shane Hanchey, 7.6, $5,500 each; 8. Ryle Smith, 7.7; 9. Reese Riemer, 8.1; 10. Trevor Brazile, 8.3; 11. Matt Shiozawa, 9.1; 12. Rhen
Richard, 9.2; 13. Cooper Martin, 17.5; 14. Sterling Smith and Marty Yates, NT. 
Average standings: 1. Caleb Smidt, 66.3 seconds on eight head; 2. Rhen
Richard, 69.9; 3. Ryle Smith, 74.3; 4. Matt Shiozawa, 79.0; 5. Reese Riemer, 84.4; 6. Trevor Brazile, 88.9; 7. Cooper Martin, 90.6; 8. Tuf Cooper, 99.9. 
World standings: 1. Tuf Cooper, $191,941; 2. Tyson Durfey, $180,941;
3. Shane Hanchey, $169,847; 4. Marty Yates, $166,502; 5. Ryan Jarrett,
$163,847; 6. Caleb Smidt, $163,432; 7. Reese Riemer, $159,454; 8. Trevor
Brazile, $156,643; 9. Ryle Smith, $153,056; 10. Jake Pratt, $147,588; 11.
Sterling Smith, $132,378; 12. Cooper Martin, $128,169; 13. Matt Shiozawa, $122,923; 14. Rhen Richard, $118,053; 15. Cory Solomon, $115,502. 
Barrel racing: 1. Taci Bettis, 13.57 seconds, $26,231; 2. Carman Pozzobon, 13.70, $20,731; 3. Amberleigh Moore, 13.71, $15,654; 4. Stevi Hillman,
13.72, $11,000; 5. Tammy Fischer, 13.81, $6,769; 6. (tie) Nellie Miller and
Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 13.84, $2,115 each; 8. (tie) Lisa Lockhart and Ivy
Conrado, 13.87; 10. Jessie Telford, 13.89; 11. Jessica Routier, 18.71; 12.
Kylie Weast, 18.73; 13. Hailey Kinsel, 19.50; 14. Tracy Nowlin and Kelly Brunner, NT. 
Average standings: 1. Carman Pozzobon, 111.61 seconds on eight head;
2. Jessica Routier, 115.23; 3. Jessie Telford, 115.5; 4. Ivy Conrado, 115.89; 5. Stevi Hillman, 116.1; 6. Tammy Fischer, 116.57; 7. Amberleigh Moore,
119.26; 8. Hailey Kinsel, 120.26. 
World standings: 1. Hailey Kinsel, $313,046; 2. Amberleigh Moore,
$209,127; 3. Ivy Conrado, $185,809; 4. Jessica Routier, $179,358; 5. Nellie
Miller, $169,941; 6. Taci Bettis, $166,577; 7. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, $162,920; 8. Lisa Lockhart, $159,746; 9. Jessie Telford, $154,188; 10. Stevi
Hillman, $153,020; 11. Kylie Weast, $147,253; 12. Kelly Bruner, $129,708;
13. Carman Pozzobon, $121,908; 14. Tracy Nowlin, $116,150; 15. Tammy
Fischer, $108,046. 
Bull riding: 1. (tie) Chase Dougherty, 89.5 points on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Record Rack’s Dirty Dan, Joe Frost, 89.5 points on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s
Lumberjack, $24,327 each; 3. Roscoe Jarboe, 71.5, $16,500; 4. Tyler
Bingham, 67.5, $11,846; 5. Eli Vastbinder, 60.5, $7,615; 6. Sage Kimzey,
Parker Breding, Jeff Askey, Dustin Boquet, Boudreaux Campbell, Garrett
Tribble, Cole Melancon, Koby Radley, Trevor Kastner, Trey Benton III, NS. Average standings: 1. Joe Frost, 436.5 points on five head; 2. Chase
Dougherty, 434; 3. Jeff Askey, 424; 4. Parker Breding, 330.5 on four; 5.
Roscoe Jarboe, 318.5; 6. Dustin Bouquet, 262.5 on three; 7. Garrett Tribble, 262; 8. Koby Radley, 259. 
World standings: 1. Sage Kimzey, $358,853; 2. Parker Breding, $225,232; 3. Chase Dougherty, $223,779; 4. Joe Frost, $197,477; 5. Dustin Boquet,
$185,511; 6. Jeff Askey, $182,470; 7. Garrett Tribble, $174,136; 8. Koby
Radley, $160,072; 9. Roscoe Jarboe, $159,084; 10. Tyler Bingham, $146,910; 11. Trey Benton III, $141,393; 12. Eli Vastbinder, $139,807; 13. Boudreaux Campbell, $135,469; 14. Cole Melancon, $109,973; 15. Trevor Kastner,
$104,396. 
All-around world standings: 1. Trevor Brazile, $298,026; 2. Tuf Cooper,
$297,030; 3. Rhen Richard, $203,647; 4. Steven Dent, $193,397; 5. Curtis
Cassidy, $175,583; 6, Ryle Smith, $153,056. 
RAM Top Gun standings: 1. Hailey Kinsel, $120,212; 2. Amberleigh
Moore, $120,000; 3. Tyler Waguespack, $113,160; 4. Rusty Wright,
$109,212; 5. Chase Dougherty, $105,403; 6. Cort Scheer, $101,173; 7. (tie)
Paul Eaves and Clay Smith, 97,577; 9. Joe Frost, $93,135; 10. Chase Brooks, $92,500.                                                                                                                              
               
                      About The PRCA
 The PRCA, headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colo., is recognized as the unsurpassed leader in sanctioning the sport of professional rodeo. The PRCA’s mission is to unify membership in providing an innovative fan experience, to grow the sport of professional rodeo and provide new expanded opportunities for our membership and sponsors. Since 1986, the PRCA has paid out more than $1 billion in prize money to its contestants. The PRCA offers the best cowboys and the best rodeos; delivering the best fan experience while positively impacting our communities and embracing the spirit of the West. A membership-based organization, the PRCA sanctioned 650 rodeos in 2017, and there are more than 40 million rodeo fans in the U.S. The PRCA televises the sport’s premier events, with the world-renowned Wrangler National Finals Rodeo on CBS Sports Net and streaming on ProRodeoTV.com. The Wrangler Tour, Justin Finale, RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo and All American ProRodeo Finals also air on CBS Sports Net, and ProRodeoTV.com. PRCA-sanctioned rodeos donate more than $40 million to local and national charities every year. For comprehensive coverage of the cowboy sport, read the ProRodeo Sports News, the official publication of the PRCA, and make sure to check out the digital edition of the PSN. The digital PSN and daily updates of news and results can be found on the PRCA’s official website, www.prorodeo.com. For additional information about this press release, contact: Tracy Renck719.528.4758trenck@prorodeo.com Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association101 Pro Rodeo DriveColorado Springs, CO 80919 www.prorodeo.com
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☛Is the Federal Government paying outsourced hunters to shoot wild horses?

Posted by on Dec 14, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 1 comment

by Richard E. “Rick” Dennis CPP

Dec. 14, 2018

I recently engaged in a conversation with Captain William E. Simpson, a former military veteran, freelance writer as well as a Wild Horse and Burros conservation enthusiast. The topics of the conversation included a myriad of individual and shared philosophical ideologies and hypothesis exchanges pertaining to: Wild Horse and Burro preservation, as well as Mr. Simpson’s newest concept, i.e., the reintroduction of captured and corralled wild horses and the burros that were previously removed from government rangeland, for the sole purpose of wild fire control in remote wilderness areas of the U.S.

In fact, the reintroduction of wild horses and burros into remote wilderness areas to feed off of the underbrush grasses, which fuel the rapid numbers of increasing and devastating wild fires, seems like a very logical concept to me.  It places the wild horses and burros back where they’re supposed to be, decreases federal spending for rounding up, corralling, transporting, housing, feeding and caring for the animals, except for a few obstacles in its path. main culprits are our federal government and the cattle and sheep ranchers whose cattle are occupying vast swaths of lands in our western public grassland landscape.

During my tenure on planet earth, I’ve learned a few facts about our federal government. For example,  after it’s involved in a federal project, it probably will never work efficiently again – if at all. Wanton financial waste is an inherent institution in our “powers-that-be,” whose economic projections, spending and enactment most certainly defies sound business logic. To quote a U.S. Senator from Louisiana to illustrate this established trend, one only has to apply his testament to this truth said by the honorable Mr. John Neely Kennedy, “Our country was founded by geniuses and is run by idiots!”  

Over the years, I’ve personally written a litany of articles on the topic of the preservation of wild horses and burros, the inflictions being put on the wild horses, burros and predators occupying public grass lands, the ineptness of the federal government, as well as horse abuse. To me, it’s not as hard a topic to understand as the federal government, sheep and cow ranchers receiving government subsidies who occupy public grasslands and the special interest groups profiting from public land grazing would like for you to believe.  

First of all, long-ago the public grasslands were set aside by the U.S. Government for the citizens of the U.S. and its wildlife and not for ranchers receiving government subsidies for ranching on our public lands. Nor did the government set aside this land for billionaires and millionaires who have found a very lucrative dollar sign to attach to their bottom-line profits while taking advantage of the ridiculously low grazing costs as well as the endogenous species originally occupying public grass lands, such as wild horses and burros, deer species, predators (i.e.) carnivores-meat eaters,  e.g., bears, wolves, bobcats, mountain lions, etc.

Two things I’ve learned from being associated with the federal government through my military service in the U.S. Army during the Viet Nam War era and my sixteen years as a Drug Enforcement Agent and Law Enforcement professional. (1) Some federal government employees are masters at propaganda and (2) some federal government employees are corrupt.  They have adopted the “Do as I say and not as I do” mentality. In fact, some years back, I wrote a request for a criminal investigation of the BLM, with the request being sent to the Office Of Inspector General in Washington, DC. To date, I haven’t heard the outcome. 

The Wild and Free-Roaming Horses and Burros act of 1971 was supposed to be the shining beacon on the hill – so to speak.  The act covered the management, protection, and study of “unbranded and unclaimed horses and burros on public lands in the United States.”  

However, as with all things designed to be good, unscrupulous opportunists have learned to take advantage of the system and profiteers have learned to make exorbitant financial profitsat the expense of our public grazing land and the wildlife inhabiting it. Horses and Burros are removed and either sent to exile in concentration camps to make room for more cattle and sheep, predators are killed because they feed off of cattle and sheep have been introduced in their native habitat by ranchers, that turn out to be “lunch menu items” and are either trapped and removed at taxpayer expense or shot and killed in place by ranchers, as well as birth control, i.e., sterilization for wild Horses and burros.

Confidential sources have told me that the BLM has a little known undocumented expenditure amount of $2,500 that certain agency members can spend without claiming what it was used for and without receipts to verify the expenditure. I’m told that many outsourced hunters are being paid this $2,500 to kill, in place, wild horses and burros with high-powered rifles with silencers. I’ve also been told that there are currently some 290-some-odd head of horses lying dead in a mountainous region of a Western state, with all deceased bodies lying side by side and shot in the head. The corpses are decomposing as of the writing of this article.

One could probably file a Freedom of Information (FOIA) request to try and obtain any information pertaining to this alleged act but the filer probably would have as much luck getting a truthful answer from the government, as one would have finding Hillary Clinton’s missing e-mails. 

One fact of certainty remains: wild horses, burros and predators are being killed and the BLM isn’t conducting enough all-inclusive investigations to find out who the culprits are. It’s been my experience and opinion that BLM would rather listen to a group of whining taxpayer subsidized ranchers receiving millions of taxpayer dollars equivalent to welfare payments than they would to preservation groups whose only concern is the welfare of our public grasslands and wildlife.  

After all, public grassland beef production only accounts for two percent or less of the total beef production in the United States., at a cost of more than $500 million annually to appease welfare ranchers who demand wild horse, burros and predator removal.  This public travesty is just another example of the federal government trying to act like smart people while fulfilling the forgoing statement: “Once the federal government gets involved in something, it probably will never work right again, if at all.” 

On the other hand, in an article entitled “Healthy Forests – Healthy Communitie,”, Mr. ????   Simpson offers a sensible and alternate solution to this problem by re-homing wild horses and burros in remote wilderness areas to feed off of grass that fuels wildfires (i.e.) the devastation from this and last year’s wildfires is still unfolding at a scale that has not even begun to be understood. 

The socioeconomic impacts, which include the loss of life, property, natural resources, massive impact on health and healthcare, economic impacts on business and real property, etc., emanating from last year’s wildfires are continuing to mount as other new impacts are just surfacing. The total annualized losses and costs are in the realm of hundreds of billions of dollars annuallyand unsustainable.

Legislators must CHANGE how they are handling this most serious problem as the usual methods (and people) are not providing the greatly needed solution. We need new blood and ideas if we are to devolve this monumental devastation, which is certain to be worsening year over year, as it already is trending.

Following is a plan to save human life, wildlife, forests, watersheds, fisheries, property and native-species American wild horses, that are approaching extinction under the BLM’s awful management according to Dr. Ross MacPhee, curator of Vertebrates – American Museum of Natural History: An intelligent forest management plan encompasses three synergistic actions:

1.      Correcting Unnatural 1-hour Fuel Loading.

                  It’s important to note that: When native Americans used fire to manage the landscape, there were about 100-million more large-bodied herbivores grazing on the landscape than there are today. Those now-missing, native-species herbivores consumed about 273-million tons of annual grass and brush (1-hour fuels), based on an average grazing of 15 pounds per day across various native-species herbivores. The best science informs us that when native-species herbivores are depleted, catastrophic wildfire evolve.

2.      Logging And Thinning Forests.

                  Forests must be managed by experienced managers who have a holistic approach to forest management. Overstocked (high tree densities) forests must be culled so tree densities are optimal (based on species and carrying capacity of landscape) in order to preserve water and light resources for the best trees and this requires intelligent thinning. 

In ecologically sensitive areas containing rare flora and fauna, domestic draft horses have been well-proven to be a successful method for both logging and thinning in ecological sensitive forests. In other less sensitive areas, traditional methods (mechanized) can be employed with proven success.

3.      Wildfire Suppression

                  With the assumption that the foregoing programs and methods are implemented, stopping wildfire suppression is logical and made far more effective by the implementation of the best practices as outlined herein above and therefore must be set as established policy by all agencies.

For more information on Mr. Simpson’s fire prevention plan with the re-introduction of corralled Wild Horses and Burro’s, please click on the following link:

Link Here

For more information on Mr. Simpson’s latest video on this subject, please click on the following link:

Link Here

Until Next Time, Keep Em Between The Bridle!!


WIND RIVER COMPANY LLC

Richard E. “Rick” Dennis CPP

Managing Member

Office/Mobil: (985) 630-3500

Email: richardedennis51@gmail.com

Web Site: http://www.richardedennis.net

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A CHRISTMAS REFLECTION – THEN & NOW

Posted by on Dec 14, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, RICK'S CORNER, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

By Rick Dennis
Dec. 14, 2018

THEN …

As a youngster growing up in Alabama in the 1950s and 1960s, I was born into a family and community where Christmas was one of the most celebrated holidays of the year.

By today’s financial standards, some would say our family was poor – but we never recognized or was aware of this class distinction. Growing up, I always had plenty to eat, 22 bullets to shoot, several pairs of overalls to wear and at least one pair of boots to wear a year. I grew up in an era and community in Alabama when farming was the principle source of income for families.

When I was not in school, hard work and assigned chores was the standard of the day. It seemed a never-ending supply of work was readily at hand requiring attention. As I was the oldest in my family, these essential after-school duties usually came my way first. I never did quite figure out why being the oldest meant you were assigned more work. I always figured being the oldest meant you could be assigned a managerial role. I soon learned this philosophy was not a viable thought process with my parents.

Horses and mules were not used for recreational or exhibition purposes as they are today. Instead my family, as well as other families in my community, used these noble animals principally for plowing, cultivating and harvesting crops in the fields to provide food for the table and bring our sale crops to the train depot in Clanton, Alabama for shipment to the farmers market in Birmingham, Alabama.

These animals were also used as our principle mode of transportation, to bring trees out of the mountains to provide firewood for the fire place and wood-burning heaters, the smoke house for meat preservation or the saw mill to provide lumber for building purposes. Tractors were non-existent in this time period.

It was during this time of the year my family was catapulted into the Spirit of Christmas, which meant it was time to go up on Oak Mountain for the much-anticipated and celebrated Christmas tree cutting. My grandmother Jeanette, on my father’s side, was the matriarch of the designated Christmas tree selection and harvesting process.

My grandmother, born out of a Scottish father and a Native American Indian mother, always seemed to have a spiritual connection with the tree she selected. We would move over the mountains for hours viewing what seemed an endless supply of trees – but after each evaluation she would declare, “Nope, not the right tree!”

Often times this tree scrutiny and survey continued for hours and miles of hard walking, until the moment of truth arrived when suddenly my grandmother would stop by a tree, grab and shake it, mentally eye it up and down, walk around it several times and turn with a big smile on her face and declare, “Kids, this is our Christmas tree!”

When the selection process was over, the tree was harvested by the oldest family members with an axe or a crosscut saw, or both, and promptly loaded on the sled and pulled home with each family member sharing with their turn on the pull rope.

When we arrived at home there weren’t any store bought ornaments to decorate our tree but we did have an ample supply of hand-made decorations acquired over the years from various family members. Each family member possessed one special ornament with his or her name scribed on it which made for a fast scramble to the ornament box to be the first to put their ornament on the tree.

The remaining ornaments were made by us. Popcorn was popped, colored with food dye into various colors, strung on sewing thread and hung on the tree to form a sea of riveting colors. Everything kids could think of were eventually hung on our Christmas tree until the matriarch affixed the Star of David on top of the tree, signaling the decorating was over.

The remaining day was spent sitting around the fire and thinking about what could be made by our family to donate to the church for distribution to other families in our region who were less fortunate than we were.

The most valuable lessons I learned from my early childhood experiences and the Spirit of Christmas are – the family is the most valuable commodity we have, never forget your roots, always give something back, it’s better to give than to receive and it doesn’t matter how much or what you have, make the best of it because often times more is not necessarily better.

NOW …

Today some Christmas trees come complete out of a box, including lights and

decorations. Christmas tree decorations and ornaments are manufactured in sizes, shapes and colors and readily available for purchase at department stores.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year have been replaced by the politically correct euphemism  “Happy Holidays” and another politically correct euphemism has replaced “A Christmas Party” with “A Winter Party.”

Horses and mules have been replaced by tractors as the principle cultivation tool in the farming community while establishing themselves as the principle means of recreation for the equestrian community as well as, in some cases, big business.

In fact, an entire equestrian industry has evolved around the noble horse as well as the businesses that have emerged to support them: tack shops, feed stores, judges, horse training facilities, horse breeding facilities, medical facilities and veterinarians, drug manufacturers, horse trailer manufacturers, equestrian magazines, bit makers, saddle makers, etc., and include the nonprofit organizations that have emerged to support this industry.

In the equestrian industry today, we are very lucky to have nonprofit’s such as the American Quarter Horse Association, National Cutting Horse Association, National Reined Cow Horse Association and the National Reining Horse Association, as well as other horse organizations in the industry that provide us with a place to exhibit our stock (professional and non-pro alike), meet new folks in the spirit of competition and establish new friendships along the way.

These organizations are not always perfect but a lot of folks rely on these equestrian organizations, as well as the guys and gals that run them, as a source of revenue to provide sustenance for their families in the spirit of entrepreneurship. They not only provide a single source of revenue for some but a lot of enjoyment for families and individuals in the equestrian industry.

Therefore, in the Spirit of Christmas, I would like to personally thank you – one and all for your time spent in these wonderful organizations and the contributions made by each one of you to support the equine industry.

In my journey, I’ve never lost sight of the core principles I learned as a boy nor have I forgotten my roots or the Spirit of Christmas! In keeping with these ideologies, it has been my policy throughout my professional career to always give something back to the community from my professions: free drug lectures to schools, free time spent as a mentor with under-privileged children and free riding lessons for the youth – no matter what their financial position is.

Over the years, my students have always generously paid me back by providing me with an exhilarating feeling from just watching their eyes light up when they finally execute a maneuver correctly or after completing their first show. When I see such happiness in a child’s eyes, it reminds me of days long ago on Oak Mountain harvesting that special Christmas tree on that cold winter day and that special lesson I learned during a time in my life long ago. “It truly is better to give than receive!”

At this very special time of the year, our thoughts turn gratefully to those who have made our progress possible. It is with the Spirit of Christmas and personal gratitude that I would like to wish each and everyone one of you, especially the avid readers of “Ricks Corner” and “www.AllAboutCutting.com,” as well as all those in the equine industry, a Merry Christmas and a most prosperous and safe Happy New Year!

“Until Next Time, Keep ‘em Between The Bridles!”

Richard E. “Rick” Dennis
Managing Member
Wind River Company LLC
Office/Mobile: (985) 630-3500
Email: windrivercompanyllc@gmail.com
Web Site: http://www.windrivercompanyllc.com

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TODAY’S NEWS

Posted by on Dec 9, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, FROM THE EDITOR, HORSE NEWS, INDUSTRY NEWS, MAJOR EVENTS, REINING NEWS, RODEO & BULLRIDING NEWS, SALES INFORMATION, WHO, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 0 comments

Gathered by Glory Ann Kurtz
Dec. 8, 2018

TOMMY HOUSTON NAMED HALL OF FAME MEMBER FROM TARLETON STATE UNIVERSITY

Showing his versatility, Tommy Houston, current operator and manager of the Houston Ranch in Bluff Dale, Texas, , along with two other inductees, was recently inducted into the Tarleton State University Rodeo Hall of Fame. Most of the cutting horse world knew Houston as a cutting horse owner and rider.

According to a press release from Tarleton State University, on Nov. 3, during the Tarleton State University Rodeo Hall of Fame ninth annual steak dinner and auction, at the Twisted J in Stephenville, Texas, they inducted Houston, along with two other individuals: Bradley Harter, a saddle bronc rider and 10-time qualifier for the Wrangler National Finals rodeo and Kim Todd Hodge, a barrel racer, goat tyer, breakaway and team roper, who competed in the National Little Britches Rodeo Association, as well as high school rodeos and the NIRA. 

Houston accepted a rodeo scholarship at Texas Tech, but traveled with members of the Tarleton Rodeo team, including Tooter WaitesRandy MajorsCharles Bitters and Bobby Hungate. Taking honors such as the all-around hand at the West Texas State University rodeo in 1967 and twice winning the Texas Tech calf roping and the Tarleton Rodeo calf roping in 1967, he was no stranger to the winner’s circle. He went on to win the American Quarter Horse Association’s World Calf Roping Title in 1981.

NRHA FUTURITY:

The first major Western horse event to be over by today’s date is the National Reining Horse Association (NRHA) Futurity held in Oklahoma City, Nov. 19-Dec. 1.  The 2018 NRHA Open Futurity paid out the second largest purse in the event’s history, with nearly $1.5 million awarded. Additionally, there was an 8 percent increase in horses entered (399) and a 14 percent increase in total entries (1,124).

The Open Champion of a 70-horse field across four levels, taking home a $142,500 for his owner and $7,500 for his nominator, Karl Hapcic, was A Vintage Smoke, sired by an NRHA Million-dollar Sire, A Sparkling Vintage, out of Lady Smoke Peppy, owned by Diane Mesmer and ridden by NRHA Million Dollar Rider Jason Vanlandingham. 

The Reserve title went to Isnt She Perfect ridden by Kole Price.  She is sired by NRHA Two-Million-Dollar sire Walla Walla Whiz out of Miss Silver Gun and is owned by Amy Meadows. The mare was nominated by Tamarack Ranch LLC. The owner’s share of the purse was $130,352 and the nominator’s share was $6,518.

The NRHA Non-Pro Futurity included historic numbers with entries being up 8 percent , hosting 629 entries compared to last year’s 582, and a record purse of $617,166.  Also, the purse for each level was at a record high.

The winning  Non-Pro title went to Tish Fappani following a three-way runoff for the Championship. Fappani was aboard Icecube, a red dun stallion by SG Frozen Enterprize and out of Taris Designer Genes, nominated by Andrea Fappani and owned by Andrea and Tish Fappani. 

NCHA FUTURITY SALES:

Following a stellar Session I Day Sale on Wednesday, Dec. 5, Western Bloodstock continued its upswing in the Preferred Breeders I Evening Session with a $30,000 average and 82% completed sales.

High Brow CD, the 2007 NCHA Futurity Open champion and a leading sire of the earners of $8.6 million, was the high seller of the evening. The 14-year-old son of High Brow Cat, consigned by Grace Ranch, brought $401,000 from Robert S. Collins/Homeplace Horse & Cattle, Blackville, S.C.

Magic Metallic, an 8-year-old Metallic Cat daughter, with an embryo by Hottish, brought the second highest price of the evening. Consigned by Waco Bend Ranch, Ltd., the full sister to 2017 NCHA Open Horse of the Year and World Champion Stallion Metallic Rebel LTE $438,266 sold to Stella Swanson, Midland, Tex., for $370,000. On Monday, in the NCHA Futurity 2-Year-Old Sale, Swanson purchased the Metallic Cat son Tin Man for $500,000.

Money Talks Smart, a 16-year-old mare sired by Smart Mate and consigned by Beechfork Ranch, sold for $100,000 to Rocking P Ranch, Fort Worth, Tex., owner of leading sires Metallic Cat and Spots Hot. Money Talks Smart, dam of the earners of $557,103, sold with an embryo by Metallic Rebel and one by Purdy Boy Flash.

 NEED A LAST-MINUTE CHRISTMAS PRESENT?

If you are at any of the above-mentioned high-dollar events for cowboys and cowgirls, you will surely see Bill Chambers, a published author of a variety of books that he sells at major horse events. Chambers, who grew up with Cerebral Palsy, a debilitating physical disease he was born with and that severely affects his body movements, as well as speaking – but not his mind and ability to write interesting books. 

Rather than simply accepting government assistance, Bill is the author of at least 10 books that he physically markets at major horse events. His latest is called Seven Hill Sides and was inspired by a song written his friend Walt Wilkins. I think it is his best! 

The 158-page easy-to-read book is about the life of a man, born in an Appalachian mining town, who escaped being a miner, becomes a famous baseball player and marries a beautiful woman. But he loses his only child before it is born. He eventually finds God and becomes a carrier of the gospel. The book takes place during real major events in American history and includes a list of interesting characters who experienced both life and death during those times and reveals what they learned along the way. 

If you haven’t seen Bill at one of the shows, you can order books at P.O. Box 1338, Boyd, Texas 76023. They make great Christmas presents!

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☛ AQHA STANCE ON VOGEL/DUFURRENA SITUATION- 11-15-18

Posted by on Nov 15, 2018 in BREAKING NEWS, COW HORSE NEWS, CUTTING NEWS, HORSE LAWSUITS, HORSE NEWS, HORSE ORGANIZATIONS, INDUSTRY NEWS, LAWSUITS & INDICTMENTS, REINING NEWS, WHO, WHAT & WHERE | 9 comments

AQHA ANNOUNCES THEY WILL NOT MAKE HORSE REGISTRATION CHANGES IN VOGEL/ DUFURRENA SITUATION

 

FINAL JUDGMENT OR SETTLEMENT AGREEMENT NECESSARY BEFORE AQHA WILL ADJUST RECORDS

 

By Glory Ann Kurtz
Nov. 15, 2018

The AQHA has made a statement regarding the Dufurrena  and Vogel situation and the adjusting of AQHA records.

 

Attached is their statement; however, in the end, the AQHA is saying they “will not take any action to change the status quo of its records unless and until a final outcome or resolution of the litigation has occurred by either the entry of a final Judgment or the execution of a Settlement Agreement between the parties.”

 

The AQHA also states that the reciprocity agreement with NCHA allows AQHA to reciprocally suspend a member who has been suspended by the NCHA for an offense of using prohibited drugs, unsportsmanlike conduct or inhumane treatment. Since the NCHA suspension of Brandon, Ed and Rieta Dufurrena falls outside of the reciprocity agreement., the AQHA has not suspended them.

 

AQHA_EdDufurrena

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