By Matt Naber
The first high-dollar rodeo of the 2019 season created a significant shakeup in the PRCA | RAM World Standings.
As $478,326 in prize money from the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo in Denver was divided among the winners, 39 cowboys saw their positions improve within the Top 15.
From Jan. 21-28 there were six competitions worth a collective $626,199, bringing the season’s total to 66 competitions worth $4,587,534.
Cowboys know it’s easier to maintain a position at the top than it is to play catch-up when trying to qualify for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. Every dollar counts, and making the Top 15 in the PRCA | RAM World Standings early establishes a solid base and builds a cowboy’s confidence as the season picks up pace.
Nobody knows that better than team roping header Clay Tryan and team roping heeler Travis Graves. Both ropers were outside the top 200 in the world standings and are now ranked ninth and 10th, respectively. The massive jump comes as a result of them having no money won in the season before placing second in the average at the National Western Stock Show and Rodeo where they each won $9,621.
With more high-dollar competitions on the horizon and those at the top still with low totals, big jumps such as Tyan’s and Graves’ are likely to occur again.
From outside top 50
• Blake Knowles moved from 87th to eighth in steer wrestling.
• Kip Lewallen moved from 71st to ninth in tie-down roping.
• Dallee Mason moved from 63rd to eighth in bull riding.
• Trey Kimzey moved from 60th to 10th in bull riding.
• Zeke Thurston moved from 57th to 15th in saddle bronc riding.
• Tanner Green moved from 51st to 13th in tie-down roping.
• Wyatt Casper moved from 30th to ninth in saddle bronc riding.
• Trevor Kastner moved from 22nd to fourth in bull riding.
• Tuf Cooper moved from 24th to sixth in tie-down roping.
• Kolby Wanchuk moved from 23rd to sixth in saddle bronc riding.
• Isaac Fontenot moved from 27th to 10th in tie-down roping.
• Ty Erickson moved from 16th to second in steer wrestling.
• Tate Kirchenschlager moved from 22nd to eighth in team roping heading.
• Clay Smith moved from 13th to first in team roping heading.
• Brody Yeary moved from 17th to sixth in bull riding.
• Jake Long moved from 11th to first in team roping heeling.
• Pace Freed moved from 15th to fifth in team roping heading.
• Jade Blackwell moved from 20th to 11th in saddle bronc riding.
• Riley Duvall moved from eighth to first in steer wrestling.
• Jade Anderson moved from 13th to seventh in team roping heeling.
• Jesse Pope moved from 14th to ninth in bareback riding.
• Clayton Biglow moved from 16th to 11th in bareback riding.
• Ty Breuer moved from 20th to 15th in bareback riding.
• Ryan Motes moved from sixth to second in team roping heeling.
• Cooper Martin moved from seventh to third in tie-down roping.
• Sterling Crawley moved from 11th to seventh in saddle bronc riding.
• Blake Smith moved from eighth to fifth in bareback riding.
• James Arnold moved from 16th to 13th in team roping heeling.
• Cody Snow moved from fourth to second in team roping heading.
• Spencer Wright moved from sixth to fourth in saddle bronc riding.
• Trevor Reiste moved from seventh to fifth in bull riding.
• Clayton Sellars moved from third to second in bull riding.
• Tyler Waguespack moved from fourth to third in steer wrestling.
• Hunter Koch moved from fourth to third in team roping heeling.
• Jeff Askey moved from fourth to third in bull riding.
• Wesley Thorp moved from fifth to fourth in team roping heeling.
Cowboys on the bubble for a spot in the Top 15 can find themselves a few dollars short of qualifying for the Wrangler NFR. The end of the 2019 season is far enough away that the bubble matters little, but it’s still noteworthy to see who is on the cusp of breaking into the Top 15. The following cowboys climbed the standings to No. 16.
• Steer wrestler Kyle Irwin moved from 35th to 16th and is $61 away from breaking into the Top 15.
• Bull rider Sage Kimzey moved from 72nd to 16th and is $471 away from breaking into the Top 15.
With Rodeo Rapid City (S.D.) and the Southwestern Exposition and Livestock Show in Fort Worth, Texas, underway, the outcomes of those rodeos and others are sure to impact the world standings.
Check back with prorodeo.com next week to see who the new leaders are in the world standings.
Courtesy of PRCA