The most unpredictable season in ProRodeo history has about five weeks left in the year-long race to qualify for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo or Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping with a Top 15 spot in the PRCA | RAM World Standings.
From Aug. 17-23, ProRodeo athletes competed at 14 competitions worth a collective $701,662, helping 31 cowboys improve their positions within the Top 15 of their respective events.
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 NFR. Every dollar counts in the race for a gold buckle, and it’s not unheard of for world titles to be determined by an extremely thin margin.
Nobody knows this better than steer wrestler Blake Knowles, team roping header Erich Rogers and tie-down roper Westyn Hughes, as all three cowboys jumped five spots in the world standings for their respective events.
Knowles moved from 14th to ninth in steer wrestling by winning the Guymon (Okla.) Pioneer Days Rodeo with 7.6 seconds on two head to earn $5,130. He also earned $1,054 by tying for fifth at the Northwest Montana Fair and Rodeo in Kalispell.
Rogers advanced from 13th to eighth in team roping heading thanks to combining with Paden Bray to win the Guymon rodeo in 9.9 seconds on two head, earning $6,348. The duo also won the Eastern Montana Fair Rodeo in Miles City with a 4.5-second run that earned them $1,224.
Hughes went from 14th to ninth in tie-down roping by earning $4,809 collectively at four ProRodeo competitions. Hughes earned $1,359 after placing second at the Oregon Trail Rodeo in Hastings, Neb., and tied for third at the Cassia County Fair & Rodeo in Burley, Idaho, for $1,925. He also picked up $674 by placing seventh during the second round in Guymon and $851 for placing eighth in Kalispell.
With the Range Days Rodeo and the Range Days Rodeo Xtreme Broncs Finals in Rapid City, S.D., and the Golden Spike Rodeo in Tremonton, Utah, this week, big jumps in the standings could happen again.
Other cowboys to improve their position within the Top 15 last week include:
• Ty Wallace moved from 13th to 10th in bull riding.
• Cole Patterson moved from third to first in steer roping.
• Curtis Cassidy moved from eighth to sixth in steer wrestling.
• Tyler Bingham moved from eighth to sixth in bull riding.
• Junior Nogueira moved from 10th to eighth in team roping heeling.
• Thomas Smith moved from 11th to ninth in steer roping.
• Chad Masters moved from 15th to 13th in team roping heading.
• Shayde Etherton moved from 16th to 14th in steer wrestling.
• Jeff Flenniken moved from 16th to 14th in team roping heading.
• Tuf Cooper moved from third to second in tie-down roping.
• Logan Medlin moved from fourth to third in team roping heeling.
• Cody Snow moved from sixth to fifth in team roping heading.
• Shane Hanchey moved from sixth to fifth in tie-down roping.
• Landon McClaugherty moved from sixth to fifth in steer roping.
• Marty Yates moved from seventh to sixth in tie-down roping.
• Tanner Aus moved from ninth to eighth in bareback riding.
• Isaac Diaz moved from 11th to 10th in saddle bronc riding.
• Kolton Schmidt moved from 12th to 11th in team roping heading.
• Jake Brown moved from 13th to 12th in bareback riding.
• Chet Herren moved from 13th to 12th in steer roping.
• Taos Muncy moved from 14th to 13th in saddle bronc riding.
• Jess Tierney moved from 14th to 13th in steer roping.
• Wesley Thorp moved from 15th to 14th in team roping heeling.
• Ruger Piva moved from 15th to 14th in bull riding.
• Cole Reiner moved from 16th to 15th in bareback riding.
Cowboys on the bubble for a spot in the Top 15 can find themselves a few dollars short of qualifying for the Wrangler NFR. With five weeks left between now and the end of the 2020 season, it’s noteworthy to see who is on the cusp of breaking into the Top 15.
• Clayton Hass moved from 17th in steer wrestling and is $204 away from breaking into the Top 15.
• Clay Ullery moved from 17th in team roping heading and is $2,038 away from breaking into the Top 15.
• Justin Smith moved from 20th in tie-down roping and is $4,051 away from breaking into the Top 15.
The outcome of the competitions in Rapid City and Tremonton, and the rest of this week’s rodeos, are sure to make an impact on the world standings and possibly on who will qualify for the 2020 Wrangler NFR and NFSR.
Fans can catch the rodeo action in Rapid City and Tremonton on the PRCA on the Cowboy Channel Plus App or on The Cowboy Channel.
Check back with ProRodeo.com next week to see who moved up within the Top 15 of the world standings.
Courtesy of PRCA