Sometimes, letting the veteran take the lead pays dividends.
Riding 25-year-old National Finals Rodeo bucking horse Spy, Austin Foss turned in an 82-point ride Saturday night to share the Horse Heaven Round-Up bareback title with Steven Peebles, who had an 82 on Thursday.
“To come to a rodeo right around home and go out and the get the win is a good feeling,” said Foss, a native of Terrebonne, Ore.
With scores low across the board during the week, Foss, 22, said he wasn’t concerned.
“I knew what I had coming in,” Foss said. “He’s an older horse, older than me, but he’s rider friendly.”
Foss, ranked third the world standings, has been having a good week. He finished second in Bremerton with an 83-point ride, picking up a check for $1,479.
“It’s nice to have a good weekend,” Foss said. “I’ve never won here before.”
Chase Bennett wasn’t able to overtake saddle bronc leader Heith DeMoss (84 points), but his 81-point ride on a young colt, moved him into a tie for second place with Wade Sundell.
It was Bennett’s second ride of the night as he was given a re-ride after his first horse did not perform up to standards.
“That horse was good,” Bennett said of his second ride. “That first one didn’t want want to give me the reins. The second was just a colt, but he was outstanding.”
After breaking his left leg last July in Cody, Wyo., Bennett started the season late. He changed up his saddle this year and has been making headway, but is out of the running for the NFR.
“I’m splitting second,” Bennett said. “I’ll take the money and run.”
Cooper Shofner had the hot run of the night in the steer wrestling at 4.3 seconds, but was well off second-round leader Wyatt Smith’s time of 3.8 seconds.
K.C. Jones, a seven-time qualifier for the NFR, looked to knock Smith out of first when he turfed his steer in 3.5 seconds, but a broken barrier added 10 second to his time, costing him nearly $2,000.
Liz Combs, a two-time college national champion from Eltopia, shared the top run of the night in the barrels with Ann Scott of Canyon Country, Calif., at 17.49 seconds.
In the team roping, Riley and Brady Minor from Ellensburg had a run of 4.7 seconds, putting them in a tie for second in the second go-round. Dustin Bird and Paul Eaves won the average with a time of 9.1 seconds on two head.
The tie-down event saw Michael Otero truss up his calf in 7.2 seconds, putting him third in the second round.
Bareback riding: Austin Foss, 82 points; Kyle Bowers 77; Chase Bowen 64. Overall Champions: Steven Peebles and Austin Foss, 82.
Tie-down roping: Michael Otero, 7.2 seconds; Cody Quaney 7.3; Landon McClaugherty 7.9. Second go winner: Randall Carlisle, 6.8 seconds. Average winner: 1. Matt Shiozawa, 14.4 seconds on two head.
Steer wrestling: Cooper Shofner 4.3 seconds; Cole Edge 4.6; Timmy Sparing 4.7. Second round winner: 1. Wyatt Smith, 3.8 seconds. Average winner: 1. John Franzen, 8.1 seconds on two head.
Steer wrestling: First round: 1. Andy Weldon, 3.8 seconds, $1,946; 2. Jake Rinehart, 3.9, $1,692; 3. (tie) Wade Sumpter, Gary Gilbert and Christian Radabaugh, 4.0, $1,184 each; 6. (tie) Dalton Massey, Trevor Knowles and John Franzen, 4.1, $423 each.
Saddle bronc riding: Chase Bennett 81 points; Roy Johnson 73; Kade Wooten 73.
Team roping: Riley Minor-Brady Minor 4.7 seconds; Landon McClaugherty-Caleb Twisselman 5.2; Brandon Beers-Jim Ross Cooper 14.4. Second round winners: Levi Simpson-Ryon Tittel 4.6 seconds. Average winner: 1. Dustin Bird/Paul Eaves, 9.1 seconds on two head.
Barrel racing: Liz Combs and Ann Scott, 17.49 seconds; Cranna Roberts, 18.52. Overall winner: Christine Laughlin, 17.21 seconds.