by ProRodeo.Com | Apr 06, 2015
HUNTSVILLE, Texas – If bareback rider Evan Jayne can continue the winning ways he’s shown so far in 2015, the French flag may be represented at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo for the first time.
The Marseille, France, native moved from sixth to fifth in the April 6 Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings by winning the Walker County Fair & Rodeo in Huntsville, as he seeks to become the first French-born cowboy – and first born-and-raised European – to qualify for the WNFR.
“I think it would be really neat if I was able to be the first French and European-born cowboy to make it to the NFR, because it would be cool to bring a whole other continent into the race for world champion,” Jayne said.
“I try not to think about it too much, because I don’t want to get too excited about it and then not have it happen. But when I’m driving down the road for a few hours, I do think of what it’d be like and I get goosebumps.”
Jayne rode Korkow Rodeos’ Inky for 86 points in Huntsville to top a field which included WNFR cowboys Richmond Champion, Winn Ratliff and Jared Smith.
Inky was a WNFR horse from 2011-13, taking Kaycee Feild to a Round 7 win in 2011 and helping Clint Cannon to a second-place finish in Round 7 of the 2013 WNFR.
“I’ve had good success on that horse in the past, including winning in Jackson (Miss.) on him a few years ago,” Jayne said.
This isn’t the first time Jayne has had success in Huntsville. He also won the title there in 2011 when he had an 87-point ride on Smith, Harper & Morgan Rodeo’s Jesse’s Girl. He also tied for second in 2008, and was fourth in 2014.
“I consider Huntsville my hometown rodeo because I lived there for 10 years, went to school (Sam Houston State) and competed in college rodeo there,” Jayne said. “It just feels like home there, and I’m very comfortable riding in that arena.”
The closest Jayne has ever come to qualifying for the WNFR was 2007, when he finished 19th in the world. He has finished in the top 25 twice more (23rd in 2008 and 24th in 2013). He was 80th in the world last year.
- While bareback rider Jared Smith tied for fifth in Huntsville, he had a much better time at the ABC Rodeo in Lubbock, Texas. Smith won the title there with an 86-point ride aboard Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Forward Motion, continuing a string of success in Lubbock. The Eastland, Texas, cowboy also won the ABC Rodeo in both 2010 and 2011.
- Steer roper JoJo LeMond won the Huntsville title for the second time in four years, taking the average with a time of 37.1 seconds on three head. LeMond’s time was 5.9 seconds better than second-place Corey Ross. LeMond, a native of Andrews, Texas, also won the Walker County Fair & Rodeo in 2012.
Courtesy of PRCA