SAN ANGELO, Texas – A little vacation from rodeo seemed to be the magic for bareback rider Jake Vold.
After two months away from rodeo, he returned Friday night, matching moves with Pickett Pro Rodeo’s Faded Memories for 88 points to take the bareback riding lead at the San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo.
“That’s the first horse I’ve been on since last year, and I guess it was a good one to knock the rust off with,” said Vold, a 2014 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier from Ponoka, Alberta. “I didn’t know a thing about him, but guys said he should be pretty strong and bucky. Then I talked to Cullen Pickett (who owns the horse), and he said he’d been to the NFR a couple of times in the E pen.”
That stands for the Eliminator pen at ProRodeo’s grand championship, a group of 20 horses that are known as the toughest-to-ride broncs in the business. Faded Memories definitely fits into that category.
“He’s big and strong,” Vold said of the horse. “I was pretty rusty, but I stuck to the basics and the things I’ve been doing riding my spur board back home. The big thing about big, strong horses is that you can’t weaken on them. As long as I keep going at them, it seems to work out pretty good.”
While Vold moved into the lead, traveling partner Caleb Bennett moved into second with an 86.5-point ride on Pickett’s Scarlett Night – Bennett is a three-time NFR qualifier from Tremonton, Utah. They are hitting the hot spots through the winter run of rodeos along with Clint Laye, a 2015 NFR qualifier from Pocatello, Idaho.
For Vold, it’s quite a change from the last two months. He had suffered a torn meniscus last season and has allowed his body time to heal. He also was waiting at his home for a knee brace to arrive to allow his knee the support it needed to compete at a world-class level. Kicking things off with a solid score in San Angelo made his life on the road feel right at home.
“I won second here in 2011, but I don’t remember if I’ve won the (first) round before,” said Vold, the 2015 bareback riding champion in the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association. “I’ve definitely won some good checks out of San Angelo.”
Now that the engine’s running, the Canadian cowboy plans to see how this 2016 edition will drive.
“I’m just going to try to have another dominating year, especially in Canada,” he said. “I have some personal goals up there. Down here, my goal is to definitely get back to Vegas (and the NFR). It sunk in last year that I wasn’t there, that I didn’t get qualified. I’ve been working hard to get back.”
Vold just missed his second straight NFR qualification, finishing 17th in the world standings – only the top 15 earn the right to play on ProRodeo’s biggest stage. Now that he’s healthy, he has his focus set on his goals.
“I’m a big believer that when you’re hurting, you’re not going to win anything,” Vold said. “I wanted to make sure that I was feeling good and that I was able to compete at the level I need to compete.
“To get a start like this, I just needed to wait until I was ready to go. Now I just need to keep riding good.”
That’s a winning formula.
San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo
Feb. 5-7, Feb. 12-14, Feb. 17-19
Bareback riding leaders: 1. Jake Vold, 88 points on Pickett Pro Rodeo’s Faded Memories; 2. Caleb Bennett, 86.5; 3. (tie) Mason Clements and Jamie Howlett, 84.5 each; 5. Luke Creasy, 84; 6. Teddy Athan, 83; 7. Clayton Biglow, 82.5; 8. (tie) Tray Chambliss II and Kash Wilson, 82 each.
Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. (tie) Josh Clark and Riley Duvall, 3.6 seconds; 3. (tie) K.C. Jones, T.J. Hall, Dakota Eldridge and Heath Thomas, 3.9 each; 7. (tie) Stan Branco and Orrin Fontenot, 4.0 each. Second round leaders: 1. Jacob Talley, 3.5 seconds; 2. Cody Woodward, 3.8; 3. (tie) Clayton Tuchscherer and Mike McGinn, 3.9 each; 5. (tie) Rowdy Parrott and Clint Shofner, 4.1 each; 7. Cameron Mormon, 4.2; 8. (tie) K.C. Jones, Clayton Hass and Forest Salsbury, 4.3 each. Average leaders: 1. K.C. Jones, 8.2 seconds on two runs; 2. Riley Duvall, 8.4; 3. Stan Branco, 8.8; 4. Nick Guy, 9.1; 5. Jacob Edler, 9.5; 6. Matt Reeves, 10.0; 7. Shayde Etherton and Justin Shaffer, 10.4 each.
Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Adam Rose/Walt Woodard, 4.0 seconds; 2. Colby Lovell/Will Wodfin, 4.1; 3. Cody Snow/Dugan Kelly, 4.2; 4. Bart Brunson/Zack Mabry, 4.5; 5. (tie) Nathan McWhorter/Dustin Davis and Justin Davis/Zane Bruce, 4.6 each; 6. (tie) Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger, Tyler Wade/Kinney Harrell and Spencer Mitchell/Justin Davis, 4.7 each. Second round leaders: 1. Kolton Schmidt/Shay Carroll, 3.6 seconds; 2. (tie) Brady Tryan/Tommy Zuniga and Tate Kirchenschlager/Trevor Kirchenschlager, 3.9 each; 4. Levi Simpson/Jeremy Buhler, Casey Tew/John Robertson and Drew Horner/Trey Johnson, 4.0 each; 7. (tie) Bobby Joe Hill/Boogie Ray, Cory Clark/Ethan Cory and Dylan Gordan/Austin Rogers, 4.1 each. Average leaders 1. Colby Lovell/Will Woodfin, 8.7 seconds on two runs; 2. Nathan McWhorter/Dustin Davis, 9.0; 3. Blake Kirdes/Joseph Shawnego, 9.3; 4. Tyler Wade/Kinney Harrell, 9.4; 5. Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger, 9.5; 6. (tie) Brandon Webb/Mickey Gomez and Justin Davis/Shane Bruce, 9.8; 8. Kelsey Parchman/Matt Kasner, 10.0.
Saddle bronc riding leaders: 1. Jacobs Crawley, 88 points on Powder River Rodeo’s Rich n Fancy; 2. Allen Boore, 85.5; 3. Curtis Garton, 83; 4. Joey Sonnier III, 82; 5. Brody Cress, 80; 6. CoBurn Bradshaw, 79.5; 7. Shorty Garrett, 79; 8. (tie) Jake Wright and Clay Elliott, 78 each.
Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Jake Pratt, 7.9 seconds; 2. (tie) Michael Otero and Caleb Smidt, 8.0 each; 4. (tie) Garrett Hale and E.J. Roberts, 8.1; 6. (tie) Chant DeForest and Ike Fontenot, 8.2; 8. Cody Quaney, 8.3. Second round leaders: 1. Marcos Costa, 7.4 seconds; 2. Riley Pruitt, 7.7; 3. J.D. Kibbe, 7.8; 4. (tie) Hunter Herrin and Justin Macha, 7.9 each; 6. (tie) Quay Howard and Jerrad Hofstetter, 8.2 each; 8. John Wall, 8.3. Average leaders: 1. Caleb Smidt, 16.7 seconds on two runs; 2. E.J. Roberts, 17.6; 3. Garrett Hale, 17.7; 4. Chant DeForest, 17.8; 5. Marcos Costa, 18.0; 6. (tie) Trey Young, Cody Owens and Jayce Johnson, 18.2 each.
Barrel racing: Second round leaders: 1. Tana Poppino, 13.97 seconds; 2. Lisa Thonton, 14.22; 3. Pamela Capper, 14.29; 4. Sabrina Ketcham, 14.31; 5. Sherrylynn Johnson, 14.36; 6. Brooke Rix, 14.40; 7. Sherry Cervi, 14.41; 8. Kelsey Lutjen, 14.47; 9. Callahan Crossley, 14.49; 10. Megan Swint, 14.52. Average leaders: 1. Pamela Capper, 29.96 seconds on two runs; 2. Tana Poppino, 29.98; 3. Sherry Cervi, 30.09; 4. Lisa Thornton, 30.33; 5. Sherrylynn Johnson, 30.3; 6. Brooke Rix, 30.43; 7. (tie) Sabrina Ketcham and Callahan Crossley, 30.52; 9. Kelsey Lutjen, 30.63; 10. Kelsie Miller, 30,69.
Bull riding leaders: 1. Dustin Bowen, 87.5 points on Lancaster & Jones’ Total Bull Battle Born; 2. Tim Bingham, 86; 3. (tie) Reagan Avery, Jeff Bertus and John Young, 84.5 each; 6. Josh Frost, 84; 7. Cody Johansen, 82; 8. Cody Rostockyj, 80.5.