HEMPSTEAD, Texas – Timber Moore likes competing in The Eliminator at the Waller County Fair and Rodeo.
On Tuesday night, the four-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier from Aubrey, Texas, put the wraps on his second straight title in the unique competition that featured eight NFR qualifiers owning 13 world championships.
“There are a lot of guys that rope great that were here,” said Moore, who earned $5,000 for the victory. “I swapped horses and was riding my good horse in the second half, and he was making stuff happen. I drew good, and luckily it all worked out in my favor.”
The event featured three world champs: Fred Whitfield, who has seven gold buckles, Cody Ohl (6) and Shane Hanchey (1). Hanchey and Moore return to the NFR this December, as do the other four cowboys in the mix: Marty Yates, Caleb Smidt, Hunter Herrin and Cory Solomon.
All eight competed in the first round, with the bottom two times being eliminated. Over the remaining rounds, the slowest individual times were dropped, which is the key to The Eliminator’s format. It was a great precursor for the fair’s rodeo, which is set for 7:30 p.m. Thursday-Saturday in the same arena at the Waller County Fairgrounds in Hempstead.
As the competition unfolded, it became a race in the final round between Moore and Ohl, who owns a record 52 NFR wins on his impressive resume. Ohl roped first and put together a blazing time of 7.4 seconds.
“Knowing how fast you’ve got to be sure makes it a lot easier,” said Moore, who followed with a 6.9-second run, the fastest time in the two years of the competition. “Knowing I had to go fast, I just had to take some chances.”
With ProRodeo’s grand championship still two months away, The Eliminator allowed the cowboys the opportunity to make pressure-packed runs. Now they’ll spend the remaining weeks fine-tuning their talents to compete for the biggest purse in the sport.
“It’s a fast start, and you have to tie them fast,” Moore said of The Eliminator. “It kind of prepares me, but we’re still so far off that I’ve still got more preparing to do before I get there.”