Rutherford Spurs His Way to 2017 San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo Title
SAN ANGELO, TX – The moment Painted River burst out of the chute Friday night, Chad Rutherford knew something special was happening.
“She was outstanding,” Rutherford said of the 8-year-old Pete Carr Pro Rodeo mare. “I felt like I could be in the high 80s with that ride, but I never imagined it would be that high.”
Rutherford and Painted River matched up for 91.5 points Friday night during the San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo’s championship round and propelled the Lake Charles, La., cowboy to the top spot in bareback riding. He finished with 176 points on two rides and jumped from seventh to first with the highest marked ride of the rodeo.
Above: Chad Rutherford at the 2017 San Angelo Rodeo's final round: 91.5 points. (LIVE! Photo/Rodney Fleming)
“I felt like I was in charge,” he said. “It was a great feeling the whole ride. I was just as aggressive as she was.”
That ride was not only the highest marked ride of Rutherford’s career, but it stands as the highest marked bareback ride so far in the 2017 season. There are three cowboys that have posted 90s. With 91.5 points, it was also the highest marked of all roughstock rides early in the season. In all, he pocketed $6,953 and pushes his season earnings past the $24,000 mark.
“This fires me up and pushes me to want to go on to the next one and just do just as good,” said Rutherford, who was fifth in the world standings heading into this week. “I know I can’t be 90 every time, it definitely builds your confidence up.”
His confidence is sky high, and part of that is because he’s riding really well. He considers his style to be aggressive, and he thinks that’s been a big help to his season. He finished the 2016 campaign 24th in the world standings and hopes remain among the top 15 at season’s end to earn his first qualification to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
“I think one of the things that’s helped me is that I have great traveling partners this year,” Rutherford said of Bill Tutor, who has been on the verge of the NFR the past few years, and Evan Jayne, a two-time qualifier. “I’m staying very true to my nutrition and staying healthy. I’m just focused this year.
“I feed off them, and they feed off me. I’ve always been a loner when it comes to traveling. Bill asked me last April if I wanted to haul with him. Getting in the van with him was probably the best thing I’ve done in my career.”
The traveling posse makes a difference. Not only do they split expenses that come with the rodeo trail, but they also are each other’s biggest cheerleaders. It helps keep morale up even through the trying times that come with the sport. Of course, a big boost is getting on good horses.
“I really didn’t know anything about Painted River,” said Rutherford, 25. “Bill had been on her at the Texas Circuit Finals (in January), and he said, ‘She’s a great horse, so just do what you do.’ It worked out great.
“I have an aggressive riding style. I believe that’s a big key to why I’m doing as good as I am. It doesn’t matter what they run under me, I’m going to go after them aggressively.”
That approach has paid off in San Angelo.
Rutherford earned $4,679 in San Angelo on his top-ranked average of 176 points on two rides.
Other highlights from the final round:
- Rodeo announcer Bob Tallman joined announcer Boyd Polhamus. Tallman from a booth, and Polhamus in the arena on a horse, reported and analyzed every interesting facet. The duo created a fast-paced, engaging narrative of the events happening in the arena. After the rodeo, many of the PRCA officials said this was the best San Angelo rodeo in recent memory.
- Last night in steer wrestling, an all-time rodeo record of 3.0 seconds with a barrier was made by Baylor Roche.
All the winners from Friday night's Final Round performance:
- Chad Rutherford in bareback riding after a 91.5-point ride on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Painted River in the short round
- Baylor Roche in steer wrestling after a 3.0-second short-round run.
- Brothers Travis and Chase Tryan in team roping
- Ryder Wright in saddle bronc riding
- Cade Swor in tie-down roping
- Kassie Mowry in barrel racing
- Trey Benton III in bull riding
Final Results of the San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo 2017
Feb. 3-5, Feb. 10-12, Feb. 15-17
Steer wrestling: First round: 1. (tie) Tyler Waguespack and Dakota Eldridge, 3.3 seconds, $3,462 each; 3. (tie) Ty Erickson, Blake Knowles, Monty Eakin, Luke Branquinho and Justen Notes, 3.5, $1,771 each; 8. Stephen Culling, 3.6, $322. Second round: 1. David Hinman, 3.3 seconds, $3,704; 2. (tie) Baylor Roche, Dirk Tavenner, Josh Peek and Will Stovall, 3.5, $2,496 each; 6. (tie) Timmy Sparring, Clayton Hass, Nick Guy Todd Suhn and Rowdy Thames, 3.6, $483 each.
Team roping: First round: 1. Erich Rogers/Cory Petska, 3.8 seconds, $3,506; 2. JoJo LeMond/Quinn Kesler, 4.1, $3,049; 3. Bart Brunson/Trace Porter, 4.2, $2,592; 4. Chad Masters/Travis Graves, 4.3, $2,134; 5. (tie) Dustin Egusquiza/Kory Koontz and Charly Crawford/Joseph Harrison, 4.5, $1,448 each; 7. (tie) Shawn Besette/Sid Sporer, Tate Kirchenschlager/Trevor Kirchenschlager and Cole Markham/Nick Simmons, 4.6, $356 each. Second round: 1. Derrick Begay/Clay O’Brien Cooper, 3.9 seconds, $3,506; 2. Nick Sartain/Justin Davis, 4.0, $3,409; 3. (tie) Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger and Matt Sherwood/Joel Bach, 4.1, $2,362 each; 5. Brett Stuart/Wesley Moss, 4.2, $1,677; 6. John Alley/Clark Adcock, 4.3, $1,220; 7. Trevor Brazile/Patrick Smith, 4.4, $762; 8. (tie) Zac Small/Will Woodfin, Travis Tryan/Chase Tryan and Luke Brown/Jake Long, 4.5, $102 each.
Saddle bronc riding:
Tie-down roping: First round: 1. (tie) Michael Otero and Tuf Cooper, 7.0 seconds, $4,199 each; 3. Darnell Johnson, 7.5, $3,320; 4. (tie) Marty Yates, Hunter Herrin, Cade Swor, Catfish Brown and Tyler Milligan, 7.6, $1,562 each. Second round: 1. Cody Quaney, 7.0 seconds, $4,492; 2. Justin Smith, 7.1, $3,906; 3. (tie) Scott Kormos and Tim Pharr, 7.3, $3,027 each; 5. (tie) J.C. Malone and Lane Livingston, 7.4, $1,855 each; 7. (tie) Blane Cox, Seth Cooke and Trinton Downing, 7.5, $456 each.
Kassie Mowry with the final round barrel racing with 14.02 seconds:
Barrel racing: First round:Second round: 1. Amberleigh Moore, 13.99 seconds, $4,988; 2. Brooke Rix, 14.03, $4,275; 3. Sammi Bessert, 14.15, $3,563; 4. Tiany Schuster, 14.17, $3,088; 5. Kassie Mowry, 14.20, $2,375; 6. Laura Kennedy, 14.24, $1,900; 7. Lindsay Sears, 14.24, $1,425; 8. Kellie Collier, 14.32, $950; 8. (tie) Jennifer Arnold and Ari-Anna Flynn, 14.35, $594 each.