ARLINGTON, Texas – Ryan Jarrett might want to get his engine checked; if it cranks a little slow but still has good power, it might need some fine-tuning.
And, quite possibly, he’s been turning a few knobs here and there and put something together. On Friday night, he roped and tied his calf in 8.4 seconds to finish in a tie for fifth place in the ninth round of the National Finals Rodeo. It was his fourth paycheck of the week worth $5,500.
He missed out on collecting cash at ProRodeo’s premier event on the first three nights, then started revving the engine in Round 4 by finishing tied for fifth. He finished third on Night 5, then placed third Thursday. In all, he’s pocketed $53,308 in nine days of work at Globe Life Field.
“I thought I broke the barrier,” Jarrett said, noting that he would have suffered a 10-second penalty, which would have taken him out of the top six spots that collect cash. “I was way to close and thought I’d just broke it. The calf didn’t have a whole lot of snap on the end of the rope, and thinking that I broke the barrier, I put two wraps on.”
Once the calf is caught, cowboys then flank the animal and tie three legs together, most commonly using two full wraps around the legs, then throwing in a half-hitch to secure it. To be even faster, some cowboys take a chance and put just one wrap and a half-hitch, but there’s more of a likelihood the calf can break free before a six-second time limit elapses.
“She would have laid there with a wrap and a hooey all day,” said Jarrett, the 2005 all-around world champion and a 13-time NFR qualifier. “It didn’t go as good as I wanted, but luckily we held in there. It’s money, and I’m not complaining. I’ll do it again tomorrow night and maybe get some of that average money, too.”
He sits fifth in the average race with a cumulative time of 95.7 seconds on nine runs. Should he remain there, he will add a bonus of $31,731 when Saturday night comes to a close.
“Even though it is a fifth- and sixth-place split, it still feels good to get a check,” he said. “You don’t leave here with your chin on the ground.
“I’d like about a third-place check tomorrow and a fifth in the average, and I’d be tickled pink. I’ve got about $50,000 won so far, and that on top of $40,000 … that’s $90,000 where I come from.”
That would be a good bit of work for just 10 days.