There were numerous great storylines coming out of this season’s Pendleton (Ore.) Roundup, which wrapped yesterday with the short go-round and crowning of champions.
The PRCA focused its piece on Bobby Mote, and rightfully so. He’s a four-time world champion bareback rider who is in the top five of the world standings. He won the first round and finished in a tie for second in the short round to win the average title. Mote’s run in Pendleton was worth $11,261
It’s a big win this late in the year with just two weeks remaining in the regular season. But there were some significant moves for those contestants on the bubble.
Take fellow bareback rider Justin McDaniel, a world champion and two-time NFR average champ. At three rodeos last weekend, McDaniel won nearly $7,500, $4,464 of which was won in Pendleton. He placed in both rounds and finished in a tie for fourth in the average.
He also won the bareback riding title in Abilene, Texas. He is a four-time NFR qualifier who missed last season and a good portion of this season because of injury.
He looks to be healthy now, and he’s making a run at Vegas. He’ll surely move up from 16th when the world standings are released Monday.
Bradley Harter won $3,818 in Pendleton, placing in the long round and the average. He also added $428 in Abilene, so that $4,246 comes in handy. That should move Harter up one spot to 12th in the saddle bronc riding standings.
Every dollar is key this time of year. Only the top 12 cowboys and cowgirls in the world standings as of Sunday, Oct. 23, qualify for the Justin Boots Championships, which will offer a purse of more than $635,000 on the final weekend of the season.
The rest of those on the bubble will chase every dollar they can that weekend, from Stephenville, Texas, to Anadarko, Okla., to the prestigious American Royal Rodeo in Kansas City, Mo. It’s a little nerve racking and very tiring.
It’s also a lot exciting.