Rodeo Insider: Area trio No. 1 going into finals

Posted Tuesday, Dec. 03, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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When the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo begins its 10-day run this weekend in Las Vegas, three Fort Worth-area competitors will enter with a No. 1 ranking.

They are Trevor Brazile of Decatur, all-around cowboy; Tuf Cooper of Decatur, tie-down roping; and Bobby Mote of Stephenville, bareback riding.

The NFR, which is scheduled for Thursday through Dec. 14 at the Thomas & Mack Center, will feature the top 15 in each event based on regular-season earnings.

In the all-around race, Brazile will enter the championships ranked No. 1 with $255,187. Cooper is ranked No. 2 with $133,024.

In addition to thriving on a huge lead, Brazile has qualified for the Las Vegas championships in both tie-down roping and team roping. Cooper has qualified in only tie-down roping.

By winning a world championship in either the all-around, tie-down roping or team roping heading category, Brazile would break the record for the most PRCA world titles. He and steer roper Guy Allen are tied at 18. Brazile is expected to win the all-around, which would give him 19. But if he wins the tie-down roping and team roping heading in addition to the all-around, he would finish 2013 with 21 world titles.

Cooper is the heavy favorite to win the tie-down roping gold buckle. He’s ranked No. 1 with $135,164 in earnings, $37,179 ahead of No. 2 ranked Tyson Durfey. It’s the largest marginal lead in any single event going into the NFR where Cooper will go after a third consecutive tie-down roping title.

In bareback riding, Mote is ranked No. 1 with $126,187. But he’ll have to fend off defending world champion Kaycee Feild who is No. 2 with $120,375. Mote will attempt to win a record-tying fifth world championship. Joe Alexander and Bruce Ford each have five titles.

Cutting horse update

With two performances remaining in the NCHA Open/Non Pro World Finals, two locals have No. 1 rankings. They are Chubby Turner of Weatherford (open division) and Mary Jo Milner of Southlake (non-pro).

In the open division, Turner of Weatherford and the mare One Time Choice has $92,026. Josh Dozier and Mississippi Cat are ranked No. 2 with $77,444. Turner and One Time Choice have earned $4,828 at the 2013 World Finals after placing in the first two rounds last weekend.

In the non-pro division, Milner has $100,357. Jo Howard Williamson is No. 2 with $76,889. Milner, who is riding a gelding named Smooth Asa Zee, has pocketed $6,035 at the World Finals after placing in both the first and second rounds.

Round 3 is scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday and Round 4 is scheduled for 4 p.m. Saturday.

The World Finals is being held in conjunction with the NCHA World Championship Futurity, the sport’s most prestigious show that features debuting 3-year-old horses. The Futurity began Nov. 21 and will run through Dec. 14 at Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum.

Celebrity Cutting

Former Dallas Cowboys tight end Jay Novacek will be in Fort Worth on Friday to defend his title at the Careity Foundation Celebrity Cutting. The performance begins at 7 p.m. at Will Rogers.

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