Shadbolt returns from injury to win

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Garrett Shadbolt rides Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Paint The Town for 85.5 points on his first ride after sitting out five months with an injury to win the bareback riding title at the Waller County Fair and Rodeo.

HEMPSTEAD, Texas – When he broke his leg during a river outing in May, bareback rider Garrett Shadbolt had plans to return to action in just a few weeks.

He had surgery and figured that would be enough time for him to rehabilitate and be ready to get back to his business of riding bucking. He was wrong. There were complications, and the healing process took longer.

Fast forward to Saturday night, where he rode Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Paint The Town for 85.5 points to win the Waller County Fair and Rodeo, his first event back after five months on injured reserve.

“It felt good,” said Shadbolt, 27, a two-time National Finals Rodeo qualifier from Merriman, Nebraska. “I’m always pretty nervous if I haven’t rode in a long time, and I’ve been on hundreds of bucking horses, but I’m still nervous. I had convinced myself that this horse was going to be a little bit of a hopper, but it wasn’t at all.”

A “hopper” is considered a horse gets a lot of air but is still easier to ride. That wasn’t the case with Paint The Town.

“I just threw on the other side of the fire and won the rodeo on the first one back, so I feel pretty confident for this year,” he said.

It’s a big move for the new season. Hempstead’s rodeo serves as a qualifier into RodeoHouston. Shadbolt not only pocketed $1,906, the win also qualified him to compete at NRG Stadium next March. Every little bit helps, especially for a guy who was near the top of the world standings when he got hurt and watched his spot on the money list fall as the campaign progressed.

When the regular season came to a close a week ago, he finished 38th.

“I came to Hempstead because it’s the first one of 2024,” he said. “I’ve been healthy for a couple of weeks, so I entered so I could start the near year with trying to make some money and get myself in the standings, try to get my foot in the door before the big winter rodeos (which begin after Jan. 1) and get my qualifications up.”

Tyler Pearson, the 2017 world champion steer wrestler, makes his transition to the animal during a 3.6-second run to finish in second place at the Waller County Fair and Rodeo.

It was the idea of qualifying for Houston that brought steer wrestler Tyler Pearson to Waller County. The 2017 world champion from Atoka, Oklahoma, finished 35th this past campaign and still has a hunger to add to his gold-buckle collection. He knocked his steer to the ground in 3.6 seconds to finish second.

“I needed to win first to get into Houston,” he said. “Second is alright, but the whole purpose was to come down here and win and try to get through.”  

The $2,350 he collected for the runner-up finish will still be beneficial. Like Shadbolt, he should be near the top of the first 2024 world standings when they come out Monday. Now 38 years old and a five-time NFR qualifier, Pearson has big plans for the upcoming season. He has one of the best hazing horses in ProRodeo, and he has a rising star in his bulldogging mount.

“This horse is new; he’s green,” Pearson said. “Last year was his first year, and he came into his own. He’s making a hell of a horse, so we’re going to go. I’d love to make the (National) Finals on him one time and ride him there.”

Pearson has big plans and big dreams. That is a big part of what makes a cowboy. Pack that together with a boatload of talent, and the dreams quickly become a reality.

Waller County Fair and Rodeo
Oct. 5-7
Hempstead, Texas
All-around champion:
Chet Weitz, $2,947 in team roping and tie-down roping.

Bareback riding: 1. Garrett Shadbolt, 85.5 points on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Paint the Town, $1,906; 2. (tie) Brayze Schill and Lane McGehee, 83.5, $1,271; 3. Payton Lackey, 80.5, $699; 4. Mark Kreder, 80, $445; 5. Bradlee Miller, 78, $318; 7. Winn Ratliff, 77.5, $254; 8. Will Lowe, 76.5, $191.

Steer wrestling: 1. Cole Walker, 3.4 seconds, $2,703; 2. Tyler Pearson, 3.6, $2,350; 3. (tie) Talon Roseland, Boyd Sawyer and Kodie Jang, 3.8, $1,645 each; 6. (tie) Riley Duvall and Heath Thomas, 4.0, $764; 8. (tie) Logan Kenline and Jeremy Burkhalter, 4.1, $118 each.

Team roping: 1. Kreece Thompson/Rance Doyal, 4.0 seconds, $4,215; 2. (tie) Cyle Denison/Dustin Davis, Lightning Aguilera/Jonathan Torres, Cody Snow/Rosh Ashford and Jake Orman/Corey Hendrick, 4.1, $2,975 each; 6. Curry Kirchner/Tyler McKnight, 4.4, $1,983; 7. (tie) Cole Thomas/Lane Mitchell and Luke Brown/Hunter Koch, 4.5, $1,612 each; 9. Chad Masters/Matt Schieck, 4.6, $1,240; 10. Kolton Schmidt/Landen Glenn, 4.7, $992; 11. Wade Smith/Zach Varian, 5.3, $744; 12. Jerod Andrews/Steve Ross, 5.7, $496.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. Cort Scheer, 82.5 points on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s No. 800x, $2,267; 2. Tegan Smith, 81.5, $1,738; 3. Roper Kiesner, 81, $1,285; 4. Brady Hill, 78, $831; 5. Brandon Lansford, 77.5, $529; 6. Weston Patterson, 76, $378; 7. Jake Clark, 75.5, $302; 8. Jake Finlay, 75, $227.

Tie-down roping: 1. John Douch, 8.0 seconds, $3,340; 2. Chet Weitz, 8.1, $2,947; 3. Dylan Hancock, 8.3, $2,554; 4. Paden Bray, 8.4, $2,161; 5. Colton Redmond, 8.8, $1,965; 6. Riley Jenkins, 8.9, $1,768; 7. (tie) J.B. Collins and Westyn Hughes, 9.0, $1,473 each; 9. (tie) Michael Otero, Charlie Gibson, HotRod Jackson and Riley Webb, 9.1, $491 each.  

Breakaway roping: 1. (tie) Tacy Webb and Hali Williams, 1.9 seconds, $3,384 each; 3. (tie) Whitney Thurmond and Britta Strain, 2.0, $2,162 each; 5. (tie) Beau Peterson and Martha Angelone, 2.1, $1,316 each; 7. (tie) Christ Braudrick and Cadee Williams, 2.2, $893 each; 9. Jordi Edens, 2.3, $752; 10. (tie) Shayla Smith and McKenna Hickson, 2.4, $611 each; 12. (tie) Montana Brown, Timber Allenbrand, Angie Green and Sawyer Gilbert, 2.6, $329 each.

Barrel racing: 1. Grace Gardiner, 15.28 seconds, $3,207; 2. Shelley Morgan, 15.31, $2,566; 3. Lindsay Sears, 15.44, $2,085; 4. Tiany Schuster, 15.46, $1,603; 5. Rainey Skelton, 15.49, $1,283; 6. Kasidi Smart, 15.55, $802; 7. Katie Jo Halbert, 15.52, $962; 8. Ericka Nelson, 15.56, $722; 9. Chloe Gray, 15.61, $641; 10. Ivy Hurst, 15.62, $561; 11. Liz Pinkston, 15.66, $481; 12. Carlee Otero, 15.68, $401; 13. Millie Marquart, 15.73, $321; 12. (tie) Jamie Olsen and Oceane Veilleaux, 15.75, $200 each.

Bull riding: 1. Clayton Sellars, 87.5 points on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Bruised Kitty, $3,159; 2. Shawn Bennett, 85, $2,476; 3. Colton Kelly, 82.5, $1,891; 4. Denton Fugate, 76.5, $1,306; 5. Billy John Stephenson, 76, $916; no other qualified rides.


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