I hope everyone had a great holiday season and is ready for a full year of team roping and barrel racing, plus any other events you may be involved in. My holiday pre-season found me in Las Vegas for more than two weeks, which included the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the PRCA Convention, plus some outstanding roping events. 

I hope everyone had a great holiday season and is ready for a full year of team roping and barrel racing, plus any other events you may be involved in. My holiday pre-season found me in Las Vegas for more than two weeks, which included the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, the PRCA Convention, plus some outstanding roping events. 

The South Point Hotel and Casino was my home away from home and I had the privilege of staying in one of their newly remodeled rooms which was very, very comfortable. My room included all hardwood flooring with a touch of western decor. The USB ports throughout the room made it a tech’s dream when it came to plugging into the modern world of our everyday life rechargeable equipment. From the lighting to the comfortable lounge chairs, I found the room to be very nice to come back to each time. The staff at the South Point is so accommodating from the front desk to the Priefert Arenas where you always feel at home. I very seldom ate off-property with their wide selection of restaurants available in house. Many folks also never left the property, watching the WNFR each night in the many viewing spots at the South Point and being able to shop at the trade show and rope during the day. 

The watching was great each night at the Thomas and Mack Arena as strong horses and bulls tested the rough stock riders and the great pen of timed event cattle tested those in the steer wrestling, tie down roping and team roping. I have never seen so many 3-second runs in the team roping and steer wrestling as this year. The barrel racers had their work cut out for them on the short course on sometimes not-so-good ground, with the record being broken numerous times. All in all, it was a great 10 days of watching with many upsets in the world championship races.

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Congrats to all of the new world champions and a special congrats goes out to Erich Rogers and Cory Petska in the team roping by setting new records in dollars won at the Finals. All of the champions seemed to have broken some kind of record this year from the very gracious Las Vegas event. Many thanks to all involved that make event the premier event of the year,

The weather this year lent itself to letting the fans enjoy getting out and enjoying some of the outdoor activities around the Vegas area. Golf was enjoyed by many who weren’t busy roping or shopping at the many trade shows that were available around the city. This year’s Junior National Finals was received with much more interest than last year and seems to be a mainstay in the future. This is a special event and will only grow in popularity in the years to come. It will be interesting to see how many of those junior contestants will return to Vegas as a WNFR contestant in the future. The talent of the youth this year was very impressive and I see a great future in this event.  Congrats to all involved.

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I had fun shopping at all of the trade shows and couldn’t resist bringing home some of the interesting products that were available. My new EZKUT Ratchet Lopper pruning sheers are coming in handy with all my winter clean-up chores around the ranch as well as my new Tayga Rechargeable Flashlight. When nighttime comes around here, my new Tayga light comes in handy for finishing up chores with my new caplight to spotting varmints in the dumpster with my new spotlight. Later in the evening, a glass of Lodi wine is enjoyed after being opened with my new wine opener obtained at the South Point trade show. One could get all of their Christmas shopping done at the many trade shows going on. Buck Taylor once again had his booth at the Cowboy Christmas and had some great art, plus good stories to tell at his booth. Western Horseman booth was again hosted by the Morgans and is always a joy to visit. Sergio was on hand with all of his fine leather products as was Capriola’s from Elko, Nev. I always enjoy seeing what is new in the Gist Silversmith booth. Steer Gear and Vogt’s are great shopping booths. Ropes Galore handed out many copies of RSN at their trade show location at the Sands and we thank them for doing that. 

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I also had fun doing a TV show with Steve Kenyon on RFD-TV one day along with some radio spots. It was fun to be back with the Christensen Girls on the Cowboy Channel live streaming for the final Saturday at the Mandalay Bay. Wrangler was once again a great host, along with Resistol and Coors during each night’s performances at the Thomas and Mack. Scott Kaniewski in the PRCA media room made sure we all got what we needed each day with the latest press releases about the WNFR. Many thanks to all involved. 

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The Cowboy Downhill will be coming up in the middle of January at the famed Steamboat Springs Ski Resort. Make your plans now to attend this year’s event on Monday, January 15th in Steamboat. You’ll get to see many of the contestants from Denver come over the mountain to compete in the Cowboy Downhill which has been going on for over 40 years. 

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Another spring event that is a must for all of you is the Timed Event Championship at the Lazy E Arena in Guthrie, Oklahoma. This year the event will be March 1-4, featuring 20 of the top timed event cowboys in the world. Make your plans now to attend. This year again will feature a Jr Division as well with top junior contestants in four events. Some great watching with big dollars up for grabs. 

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Thank you to all for the response to our December issue of Ropers Sports News. Many readers responded to the insert of the very first issue of the RSN which was included in that issue. Special thanks to my staff that made this all happen and a special thanks to Kendra Santos for the story she did on RSN and me.

  

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