By Ted Harbin, Wrangler Network contributor
SAN ANGELO, Texas – K.C. Jones always looks forward to competing at the San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo.
He proved it Saturday during the second day of competition with two solid times inside the San Angelo Coliseum. He leads the first round with a 3.9-second run and is No. 2 in the second round with a 4.3; his cumulative time of 8.2 leads the average.
“I’ve won it at least twice,” said Jones, a nine-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier from Decatur, Texas. “We like San Angelo. The bulldoggers have their favorite restaurant they all go to, and that coliseum is real fun to bulldog in. The fans are on top of you, and it’s real loud; that makes it fun.
“I didn’t like my first steer all that much, but we got through him pretty good. I missed the barrier on my second steer by about six to eight inches. I had to catch up to him and ended up making a good run, so hopefully it’ll get us back to the short round.”
Championship night – which will take place Friday, Feb. 19 – will feature the top 12 contestants in each event from the preliminary rounds.
“It’s always good when you give yourself a chance to win money,” said Jones, 45. “Back in the day when everybody got to go to all the big rodeos and you’d have 200 bulldoggers at a rodeo like this, the winter run was a big deal and the summer run didn’t seem as important. If they won good in the winter, they could make the finals.
“Now we just want to get off to a good start.”
He’s doing that in this West Texas community of about 97,000. Riding Smoker, a talented black mare owned by Jud Little, Jones had plenty of confidence on his mount. He’s had great success on Smoker, including a couple of go-round victories at the 2015 NFR.
“We gave her some time off after the NFR,” he said. “We just started legging her up. I rode her at Fort Worth. She’s kind of a queen anyway and knows she doesn’t have to work very hard. She’s spoiled.
“My wife’s pretty good at spoiling all of the horses, but, actually, I probably spoil her more than Gayle does. I keep telling Gayle that Smoker’s my girlfriend.”
She’s also one of the guiding forces to success in San Angelo, along with his hazer, Riley Butler.
“He’s from Idaho, and he came down this winter to help weld on our new place,” Jones said. “We’ve been bulldogging every day, and he hazed for me at Fort Worth. He’s done really well. We’re trying to get him tuned up so he can go on the road this summer.”
That’s just part of what makes the rodeo world go round. Veterans educate newcomers and pass along their insights to the next generation of cowboys. Jones relishes that role.
He also loves winning, and he’s still pretty good at it.
San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo
Feb. 5-7, Feb. 12-14, Feb. 17-19
Bareback riding leaders: 1. (tie) Mason Clements, on Lancaster & Jones Pro Rodeo’s Black Pearl, and Jamie Howlett, on Powder River Rodeo’s Craig at Midnight, 84.5 points each; 3. Luke Creasy, 84; 4. Teddy Athan, 83; 5. Clayton Biglow, 82.5; 6. (tie) Tray Chambliss II and Kash Wilson, 82 each; 8. (tie) Zach Hilber and Trenton Montero, 78 each.
Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. (tie) K.C. Jones and T.J. Hall, 3.9 seconds each; 3. (tie) Stan Branco and Orrin Fontenot, 4.0 each; 5. (tie) Nick Guy and Justin Shaffer, 4.6 each; 7. Josh Garner, 5.7; 8. Chance Campbell, 11.3. Second round leaders: 1. Rowdy Parrott, 4.1 seconds; 2. K.C. Jones, 4.3; 3. Blaine Jones, 4.5; 4. Cody Cabral, 4.7; no other qualified times. Average leaders: 1. K.C. Jones, 8.2 seconds on two runs; 2. T.J. Hall, 3.9 seconds on one run; 3. (tie) Orrin Fontenot and Stan Branco, 4.0 each; 5. Rowdy Parrott, 4.1; 6. Blaine Jones, 4.5.
Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger and Tyler Wade/Kinney Harrell, 4.7 seconds each; 3. Cole Sherwood/Tanner Luttrell, 4.9; 4. (tie) Cole Sherwood/Tanner Luttrell and Arky Rogers/Tyler McKnight, 4.9; 6. David Key/Travis Woodard, 5.5; 7. Tee Luttrell/Clay Sieber, 6.0; 8. Jake Cooper/York Gill, 9.4; no other qualified runs. Second round leaders: 1. David Key/Travis Woodard, 9.6 seconds; no other qualified times. Average leaders 1. David Key/Travis Woodard, 15.1 seconds on two runs; 2. Cole Sherwood/Tanner Lutrell, 4.9 seconds on one run; 3. Tee Luttrell/Clay Sieber, 6.0; 4. Jake Cooper/York Gill, 9.4; no other qualified times.
Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. Jacobs Crawley, 88 points on Powder River Rodeo’s Rich n Fancy; 2. Brody Cress, 80; 3. CoBurn Bradshaw, 79.5; 4. (tie) Jake Wright, Call Marr and Clay Elliott, 78 each; 7. Jace Lane, 77.5; 8. Jake Finlay, 77.
Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Jake Pratt, 7.9 seconds; 2. (tie) Michael Otero and Caleb Smidt, 8.0 each; 4. Robert Mathis, 8.7; 5. Cory Solomon, 8.9; 6. Mike Johnson, 9.3; 7. Westyn Hughes, 10.5; 8. Marcos Costa, 10.6. Second round leaders: 1. Marcos Costa, 7.4 seconds; 2. Riley Pruitt, 7.7; 3. Hunter Herrin, 7.9; 4. Blane Cox, 9.5; 5. Michael Otero, 10.5; 6. Tim Pharr, 11.6; 7. Mike Johnson, 24.7. Average leaders: 1. Marcos Costa, 18.0 seconds on two runs; 2. Michael Otero, 18.5; 3. Blane Cox, 22.2; 4. Hunter Herrin, 22.9; 5. Mike Johnson, 34.0; 6. Tim Pharr, 35.1; 7. Riley Pruitt, 7.7 seconds on one run; 8. Jake Pratt, 7.9.
Barrel racing: Second round leaders: 1. Pamela Capper, 14.29 seconds; 2. Sherrylynn Johnson, 14.36; 3. Sherry Cervi, 14.41; 4. Megan Swint, 14.52; 5. Kelsie Miller, 14.55; 6. Kristine Knauf, 14.58; 7. Kelley Carrington, 14.59; 8. Jayme Robison, 14.63; 9. Liz Herrin, 14.72; 10. Erin Reich, 14.77. Average leaders: 1. Pamela Capper, 29.96 seconds on two runs; 2. Sherry Cervi, 30.09; 3. Sherrylynn Johnson, 30.3; 4. Kelsie Miller, 30,69; 5. Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, 30.80; 6. Megan Swint, 30.82; 7. Kristin Knauf, 30.87; 8. (tie) Kelley Carrington and Jayme Robison, 30.95; 10. Brogan Macy, 30.99.
Bull riding leaders: 1. Dustin Bowen, 87.5 points on Lancaster & Jones’ Total Bull Battle Born; 2. Reagan Avery, 84.5; 3. Josh Frost, 84; 4. Cody Rostockyj, 80.5; no other qualified rides.
Courtesy of Pete Carr Pro Rodeo