GREELEY, Colo. – Saddle bronc rider Shorty Garrett is walking tall after making a clean sweep during the first two rounds of the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo.
Garrett is chomping at the bit to make his debut at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo after finishing 18th in the 2019 PRCA | RAM World Standings. He was fourth in the latest world standings with $81,464.
Although the money won at the RAM NCFR doesn’t count toward the world standings, the confidence gained will carry into the final weeks of the regular season and the NFR in Arlington, Texas, in December.
“A guy takes every win with a bit more confidence, and it makes you crave it that much more,” said Garrett, 28. “You’re positive and your mind is right when you come off a win.”
In Greeley, Garrett split the win in Round 1 with 86 points on Sutton Rodeos’ Sweet Emotion to tie All-Around World Champion Stetson Wright on Sept. 10. Garrett returned Sept. 12 to win Round 2 outright with an 84.5-point ride on Stace Smith Pro Rodeos’ Flashcard Champ, winning the average by two points over Stetson and three points over Ryder Wright.
“It worked out and I drew the horses I needed to get the positions I got,” Garrett said. “It’s really easy when a guy only has to worry about himself coming into this kind of deal.”
Garrett’s strong season includes a record-setting win at Rodeo Rapid City (S.D.) in February where he posted a 90.5-point ride on Sutton Rodeos’ South Point.
Garrett has had his eyes on Flashcard Champ since the horse was owned by Korkow Rodeos and won top bareback horse honors at the 2015 RAM Badlands Circuit Finals Rodeo.
“I’ve been wanting this horse for a long time,” said Garrett, adding that Flashcard Champ is from his home state of South Dakota. “There’s several I want to get on. He is one with some drop to him and kicks high in the air, and there’s nothing dirty about him.”
Garrett’s combined efforts in the first two rounds in Greeley were worth $7,017 and granted him a position in the semifinals as one of the top eight competitors in saddle bronc riding.
“It’s cool that a guy can come in here and go out with two round wins, but it’s a clean slate tomorrow, so it’s back to normal with a fresh start,” Garrett said.
Tickets to the semifinals and finals can be purchased by calling 970.356.7787.
“Come out and see the show,” Garrett said.
Fans can catch the RAM NCFR on the PRCA on Cowboy Channel Plus App Sept. 13 at 4 p.m. (ET).
Piva makes most of first RAM NCFR
Bull rider Ruger Piva called his traveling partner and best friend, Jordan Spears, to tell Spears not to enter the RAM NCFR.
Spears had qualified but because of an injury was debating whether to compete at the RAM NCFR in Greeley. Piva’s opinion, don’t do it, Jordan.
“I got his spot,” Piva said. “When I got the call saying if Jordan is hurt, we’re going to send you, I got on the phone – he’s my best friend – and said, ‘Hey, don’t take that spot at the RAM Finals.’ He said he didn’t think he’d be ready, but he was thinking of going. I said, ‘No, don’t, because I’m going.’ He said, ‘Oh, OK, I’ll let you go this once.’”
Piva took full advantage of the opportunity to compete at his first RAM NCFR, riding Andrews Rodeo’s Cool Arrow for 89.5 points. Piva won the round. With only three competitors covering their bulls in the second round, the ground money helped Piva earn $4,640. He won another $2,829 for finishing second in the average for a collective $7,469.
The previous week hadn’t gone well for the Idaho cowboy, so Thursday made it all worthwhile.
“I had a pretty bad week last week, didn’t ride very good,” said Piva, 25. “It was a kick me in the butt to get going again. It means quite a bit to me.”
Pratt wins tie-down roping average
Tie-down roper Jake Pratt didn’t have the best run Saturday night at the RAM NCFR – but it was enough to get him the average win.
The Ellensburg, Wash., cowboy stopped the clock in 12.1 seconds to claim the average title with a two-head time of 21.3 seconds. Pratt split the win in the first round with a 9.2-second run.
Pratt’s horse, Six, fueled his success in Greeley.
“I’ve had him four years, and he’s turned me into what I am now,” said Pratt, who qualified for the NFR in 2018. “Last year I ended up 21st in the world standings and he got hurt in August. I had another horse, but it’s still not the same. It’s like a NASCAR guy running a back-up car. There are some guys it doesn’t matter, but 90% of the guys out here, when they get that good horse, that’s what matters.”
Pratt said his run Saturday night wasn’t his best.
“I didn’t want to break the barrier and I double-clutched,” Pratt said. “The race was on and this is a big arena, and everything was going different directions. It was like the old-time cowboys, I just got to that calf.”
Pratt earned $3,735 for the average and will be in the eight-man semifinals Sunday, with the top four advancing to a sudden-death round to decide the RAM NCFR champion.
“I’m going to be the last guy out (in the semifinals), and that’s not always my favorite position,” Pratt said. “But at least I will know what I have to do to get in the top four. (Sunday) is a whole new deal. I just want to do my job, make it to the four, work through the four and hopefully come out victorious.”
Second Round Results
Other winners of the second round were bareback rider Nate McFadden (85.5 points on Brookman Rodeo’s Make Ya Smile); steer wrestler Tanner Brunner (3.8 seconds); team ropers Erich Rogers/Lane Siggins (4.3 seconds); tie-down roper Bryce Bott (10.0 seconds); and barrel racer Jessica Routier (17.16 seconds).
• Bill Tutor
• Trenten Montero
• Jade Taton
• Trevar McAllister
• Tristan Hansen
• Ty Taypotat
• Cole Goodine
• Blaine Kaufman
• Blake Knowles
• Olin Hannum
• Trevor Duhon
• Cody Pratt
• Stetson Jorgensen
• Sterling Lambert
• Will Lummus
• Ty Erickson
• Brady Tryan/Justin Viles
• Bandis Guiterrez/Orlando Jauregui
• Coy Rahlmann/Ryan Von Ahn
• Jr. Dees/Nano Garza
• Kellan Johnson/Brock Handson
• Quinn Kesler/Colby Siddoway
• Luke Brown/Paul Eaves
• Dawson Graham/Keely Bonnett
Saddle Bronc Riding
• Kolby Wanchuk
• Jacobs Crawley
• Bradley Harter
• JJ Elshere
• Joe Harper
• Ryder Wright
• Stetson Wright
• Shorty Garrett
• Trey Young
• Trevin Baumann
• Cody Huber
• Cole Bailey
• Clint Robinson
• Jesse Popescul
• Bryce Bott
• Jake Pratt
• Kelly Yates
• Nellie Miller
• Shali Lord
• Jimmie Smith
• Brooke Wills
• Michelle Darling
• Jill Wilson
• Jessica Routier
• Fulton Rutland
• Wyatt Nez
• Garrett Uptain
• Nick Tetz
• Jeff Askey
• Josh Frost
• Ruger Piva
• Jeff Bertus
Courtesy of PRCA