ProRodeo Sports News - April 5, 2019

Black Kat good luck for Caleb Bennett

Bareback rider Caleb Bennett won Rodeo Austin for the second consecutive year, and both titles came with him on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Nutrena’s Black Kat. In 2018, he won with 87 points on Black Kat in the final round, while this year he posted 87.5 points. “It’s become my favorite horse now,” Bennett said. “The last couple of years have been awesome to me in Austin.” The Utah cowboy tied for eighth in the first round with an 81-point ride and placed third in the semifinals with 82.5 points. “Anytime you win a big rodeo like Austin or San Antonio, if you win it once it’s a huge blessing, but Austin is one that is tough to win once, let alone twice,” Bennett said. “So, when I left this year I was

RookieWright wins saddle bronc crown Normally it’s no surprise for one of the Wrights to win in saddle bronc riding, but this time it was rookie StetsonWright – the only member of the famed Utah family competing in saddle bronc riding and bull riding. “I’ve done this for so long that it feels weird if I don’t ride in both,” the 18-year-old cowboy said. Wright is leading the PRCA | Resistol Rookie Standings for saddle bronc riding and bull riding. Wright wasn’t in the top 50 for saddle bronc riding before winning Austin, but he moved to 30th with $14,704. His position in the bull riding world standings remained at ninth place after winning $2,765 at the Liberty NTL Extreme Bulls competition in Lawton, Okla., March 30. At Austin, Wright tied for fifth in the saddle bronc riding semifinals with 81 points and won the final round with 89 points on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Nutrena’s Tequilla Sheila for $9,935. “It means a lot,” Wright said. “I’ve struggled with saddle bronc riding for a while (due to a knee injury in July), so to win that rodeo is pretty special. My knee didn’t impact my bull riding as much. I’m not sure why but maybe it’s because I can just hang on in bull riding, but you have to spur in bronc riding.” Wright’s dad, Cody, won Austin in 2008, and his uncle, Spencer Wright, holds the rodeo’s saddle bronc riding record with his 94-point ride from 2015. “Even Rusty (Stetson’s older brother) has had a lot of success there,” Wright said. “I guess this rodeo just treats us good.” –Matt Naber like, ‘Golly, it can be done!’ I was going over it again and again, and I’d been struggling mentally and physically, but with the three horses I got on (at Austin), I felt like myself with the best rides I had all winter long.” Bennett, 30, moved from 18th to eighth in the PRCA | RAMWorld Standings thanks to the $13,316 he won at Austin. “I had a great winter last winter, but this year was a bit slower,” Caleb Bennett won Rodeo Austin for the second year in a row, posting an 87.5-point ride on Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Nutrena’s Black Kat in the final round. Kirt Steinke photo

Bennett said. “I still managed to come away with a good chunk of change so I can’t really complain, but I’d like to have done better – but that’s just the competitive side in us all.” –Matt Naber

Lewis marks birthday early Tie-down roper Monty Lewis saved his best run for last in Austin. Clocking in at 8.3 seconds, Lewis was more than half a second faster than the other ropers in the final round. “I was fortunate,” Lewis said. “I ran a really good calf tonight (March 30), and the last night is the most important one.” The last time Lewis won Rodeo Austin, he went on to win the 2004 world title. On March 30, one week before his 38th birthday, the Texas cowboy celebrated his second Austin win since 2001. “I’m going to be 38 next Saturday (April 6), but I guess numbers mean different things to different people,” Lewis said. “Those guys roped really good tonight, and to know that I have a good horse and I can still go toe-to-toe with them is important to me.” Lewis finished in a three-way tie for third in the first round with an 8.5-second run and placed sixth in the second round with a 9.4-second run. He saved the best for last. Lewis credited a lot of his Austin success to his new horse, Jag, a 10-year-old American Quarter Horse that Hunter Herrin leased fromMarty Miller in 2018. “I hung around the house until July fourth last year and then went the last 90 days (of the season) to finish him (Jag) off,” Lewis said. “By October, he was 95 percent finished. He’s flawless and phenomenal. Honestly, as far as right now he doesn’t have any weaknesses. He’s the most bombproof horse I’ve had.” –Matt Naber


ProRodeo Sports News 4/5/2019

Made with FlippingBook HTML5