PRESCOTT VALLEY, Ariz. – The past several years, the RAM Turquoise Circuit Finals Rodeo has been good to bull rider Lon Danley.
In the recent past, Danley won the average at the RAM Turquoise Circuit Finals Rodeo in 2014 and 2015 and reigned as the Turquoise Circuit year-end champ from 2015 through 2017.
Danley’s trend of success continued this weekend at the 2018 RAM Turquoise Circuit Finals Rodeo.
The Tularosa, N.M., cowboy won the average with a 256.5-point total on three head, and he won another year-end title as well, Saturday.
“Success in the circuit never gets old,” Danley said.
In the Valley of the Sun, no one was hotter in bull riding. Danley made the whistle three times and was the only cowboy to ride at least two bulls.
In the first round Oct. 5, Danley set the tone for his memorable weekend with an 87-point ride on Salt River Rodeo’s Hot Sauce, which won him the round and earned him $2,339.
“I had seen that bull a bunch, but I had never been on him,” said Danley, 24. “He was just a lot of fun. That bull usually turns right back there to the left, and he blew out of there and looked left and then back around to the right, and I just picked him up. I got tapped off, and it was just a lot of fun.”
Danley’s fun continued in the second round Saturday afternoon. He had an 88.5-point trip on Salt River Rodeo’s Big Jake. He won the round and was the only rider to make the whistle, earning $4,253.
“I got that bull at Tucson (Ariz.) last year, and I didn’t even make the corner,” Danley said. “I was paying a lot more attention this time, and I tried a little harder. That bull throws a lot of guys off, but when they ride him they are a bunch of points. He turned back there to the left, and I was out over him. I had him covered up and rode him about three rounds, and he jumped out of it and went back the other way. I sure like them when they go right.”
For good measure, Danley had an 81-point ride in the finals on JK Rodeo’s Pistols and Roses. Danley was plenty familiar with that bull. He had an 85.5-point ride on him to place second in round two of the 2017 RAM Turquoise Circuit Finals Rodeo.
By the time Danley left town, he had earned $11,696.
“I just kept doing what I have been doing,” Danley said. “I feel good, and I’m healthy. I drew some really good bulls.”
Danley qualified for the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo, which will be March 21-24. All the accolades are a boost for Danley, who came up short of making the 2018 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, unofficially finishing 24th in the regular season in the 2018 PRCA | RAM World Standings with $74,182.
“That would really be huge if I could win the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo one time,” Danley said. “I’ve been trying to make the NFR the last couple of years, and I plan on getting it done. That’s my main goal.”
Other winners at the $174,443 rodeo were all-around cowboy Cutter Parsons ($3,366, tie-down roping and steer wrestling); bareback rider Logan Corbett (236.5 points on three head); steer wrestler Trey Robertson (14.3 seconds on three head); team ropers Chris Francis/Cade Passig (17.2 seconds on three head) saddle bronc rider Leon Fountain (239.5 points on three head); tie-down roper John P. Etcheverry (29.1 seconds on three head); barrel racer Leia Pluemer (46.23 seconds on three runs); and steer roper Garrett Hale (43.8 seconds on three head).
For more coverage of the RAM Turquoise Circuit Finals Rodeo check out the Oct. 19 edition of ProRodeo Sports News.
Courtesy of PRCA