Roper showing those half his age how it’s done

Posted Thursday, Jan. 30, 2014  comments  Print Reprints
A

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

Mike Johnson turns 50 next month, but he’s holding his own against world-class ropers who are half his age on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association circuit.

While competing in the Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo on Thursday night, Johnson, who lives in Henryetta, Okla., took the lead in the tie-down roping title race after turning in a speedy time of 9.9 seconds at Will Rogers Memorial Coliseum.

Johnson is ranked No. 1 with a two-run time of 18.7 seconds, which could qualify for the Stock Show Rodeo finals round, which is scheduled for Feb. 8.

Johnson has qualified for the National Finals Rodeo 23 times. His first NFR appearance was in 1983 when the PRCA’s equivalent of the World Series was in Oklahoma City. His last NFR appearance was in 2008.

In recent years, Johnson has been thwarted with nagging injuries. But he said he’s healthy this year and hopes to earn another NFR back number.

“I have to work hard at it, a little bit harder than the year before, but hopefully I can get one more good year out of myself,” Johnson said. “It feels good. I’m twice the age of the average competitor in my event and I’m really having a great time doing this.”

Johnson is ranked eighth in the PRCA early season world standings with $5,815. A big chunk of that came from earning $2,393 at the Texas Stampede Rodeo in Allen on the weekend of Nov. 8-9.

Johnson said one of the main reasons he wins is because he’s always had a lots of enthusiasm.

“The No. 1 ingredient would be passion,” Johnson said. “That passion carries over to me getting out of bed every morning, putting my braces on and going to practice and doing the things that it takes as a young guy to do it.”

Throughout the rodeo season, Johnson travels with his wife, Sherrylynn, a four-time NFR barrel racing qualifier.

“With most people in the workforce today, husband and wife go different directions,” Johnson said. “But we get to be together and be each other’s coach and each other’s buddies driving down the road. She’s my travel agent and she takes care of my business right there on the road.”

In barrel racing, 2012 world champion Mary Walker of Ennis is tied for first in Round One after turning in a 16.52 on Thursday atop her prize gelding, Latte.

“He’s just in really good shape,” Walker said of Latte. “He’s got a good rest and he’s got up to a high like he did last year.”

Walker is on a roll. On Jan. 23, she earned $10,000 after winning the Fort Worth Stock Show’s Super Shootout Rodeo. And on Sunday, Walker and clinched the barrel racing title at the National Western Stock Show in Denver ($7,905).

“He’s really on right now and he’s feeling good.” Walker said. “In this event, you have to have four feet under you and, with Latte, I have four great feet under me.”

In steer wrestling, two-time National Finals qualifier Bray Armes turned in a solid second-round time of 6.9 seconds. He is ranked fifth in the title race with a two-run time of 10.5. J.B. Lord is ranked No. 1 with a 9.1.

In bareback riding, former NFR qualifier Austin Foss got off to a solid start by turning in a first-round score of 77. He is ranked 10th in Round One in Fort Worth. Foss tied for first at the Denver rodeo last weekend.

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse, images, internet links or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?





Wednesday, April 16Full Scoreboard
Tampa Bay0Final | Box
Baltimore «3
Pittsburgh0Final | Box
Cincinnati «4
Chicago Cubs0Final | Box
NY Yankees «3
St. Louis1Final | Box
Milwaukee «5
NY Mets «5Final | Box
Arizona2
Chicago Cubs0Final | Box
NY Yankees «2
Atlanta «1Final | Box
Philadelphia0
Cleveland3Bottom 9th | Box
Detroit2@theBallpark | TV: MLB N, STO, FSN-DET+
Washington «6Final | Box
Miami3
Seattle2Bottom 8th | Box
Texas0@theBallpark | TV: ROOT-NW, FSN-SW
Boston1Bottom 6th | Box
Chicago WSox1@theBallpark | TV: NESN, WCIU
Kansas City2Top 7th | Box
Houston4@theBallpark | TV: FSN-KC, CSN-HOU
Toronto0Postponed | Box
Minnesota0
Oakland0Bottom 1st | Box
LA Angels0@theBallpark | TV: CSN-CA, FSN-W
Colorado0Bottom 1st | Box
San Diego0@theBallpark | TV: ROOT-RM, FSN-SD
Los Angeles0Top 1st | Box
San Francisco0@theBallpark | TV: SNLA, NBC Bay Area
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, April 16Full Scoreboard
Chicago86Final(OT) | Box
Charlotte «91
Indiana «101Final | Box
Orlando86
Washington «118Final | Box
Boston102
Brooklyn85Final | Box
Cleveland «114
Dallas864th Qtr 5:52 | Box
Memphis84TV: FSN-SW, SportSouth, ESPN
Philadelphia934th Qtr 5:20 | Box
Miami82TV: CSN-PHI, SunSports
Atlanta «111Final | Box
Milwaukee103
Utah1074th Qtr 0:11 | Box
Minnesota107TV: ROOT-RM, FSN-N
Houston100Final | Box
New Orleans «105
Toronto904th Qtr 2:21 | Box
New York88TV: Sportsnet 360, MSG
Detroit1094th Qtr 3:20 | Box
Oklahoma City102TV: FSN-DET, FSN-OK
LA Lakers «113Final | Box
San Antonio100
Golden State 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Denver TV: ESPN, CSN-BA+, Altitude
LA Clippers 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Portland TV: FSN-PT, KGW
Phoenix 4/16 10:30 PM ET
Sacramento TV: FSN-AZ, CSN-CA
Full Scoreboard
Full Scoreboard
No games this week
Full Scoreboard
Wednesday, April 16Full Scoreboard
Montreal4OT 9:00 | Box
Tampa Bay4TV: CNBC, CBC, RDS, SunSports
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game One.
Columbus3Final | Box
Pittsburgh «4
Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, Game One. Pittsburgh leads series, 1-0.
Dallas01st Prd 18:18 | Box
Anaheim0TV: NBCSN, TSN
Western Conference Quarterfinals, Game One.
Full Scoreboard