SAN ANGELO, TX – The 10th anniversary of the Cinch Chute-Out that placed an exclamation mark on 15 days of the 2021 San Angelo Rodeo had a little bit of everything anyone might ever witness at a rodeo, starting with the presentation of the Stars and Stripes by the Mayor of San Angelo on horseback. Keen onlookers recognized the beautiful horse she rode in on. It was the horse owned by and that performs with "The Charro," Tomas Garcilazo.
After the opening ceremony, the 10th Annual Cinch Chute Out got down to business.
The near-highlight of it all was two-time all-around world champion Stetson Wright, who is also the reigning bull riding titlist, nearly pulled off a double victory Saturday night at the San Angelo Coliseum. He won the saddle bronc riding championship and was in position to win the bull riding title, too.
Since none of the cowboys managed to stay on their bulls during the championship second go-round, that didn’t happen. Instead, Josh Frost of Randlett, Utah, claimed the title by having the best score in the opening round, an 88-point ride on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Curley Bill.
The steer wrestling was exceptionally fast, with six cowboys posting sub-4 second runs; only three advanced to the championship round, though, and 2017 world champion Tyler Pearson of Louisville, Mississippi, claimed the crown and the $7,500 in prize money after posting a 3.54-second run.
Tim O’Connell, a three-time world champion from Zwingle, Iowa, became the first bareback rider in the history of the chute-outs to win back-to-back titles. He was 89.5 points on Pickett Pro Rodeo’s Uncapped; in 2020, he tied a world record with a 94-point ride for the victory.
“I love these Cinch Chute-Outs,” O’Connell told Janie Johnson of The Cowboy Channel. “The best guys in the world, and the best horses they could possibly bring to thee events. All these horses have been to the NFR or are going to the NFR. High-pressure situations. I practice myself to win.
“That wasn’t the ride I wanted to put on. I had the horsepower underneath me to get the win tonight. He’s big. He’s strong. He bucks. I’ve been on that horse three times, and that was, by far, the toughest he’s ever been. He got really vertical with me. I thought he was going to throw me off by the fourth jump.”
It wasn’t the rankest ride of the night, though. That likely went to another three-time world champion, Will Lowe of Canyon, who was bucked off by Beutler & Son Rodeo’s Killer Bee, then the horse kicked the cowboy as he was falling out of the air. After a scary few minutes seeing the motionless cowboy laying on the arena dirt, paramedics checked him out, and he was able to get up and walk back to the safety of the chutes.
The first round of saddle bronc riding also featured difficult horses to handle. Only half of 10 cowboys managed a score. This is when Stetson Wright walked away with the title after an 88.5-point ride on Carr’s Big Tex.
Team ropers Erich Rogers of Round Rock, Arizona, and Paden Bray of Stephenville, Texas, won the trophy after posting a 5.03-second run. They won the aggregate title with the best cumulative time through 10 rounds at the National Finals Rodeo last December in Arlington. Westyn Hughes of Caldwell shot past two world champions in Tuf Cooper and Caleb Smidt to claim the tie-down roping crown.
Barrel racer Amanda Bean posted the fastest run of the three-week rodeo by stopping the clock in 14.280 seconds to win her first Cinch Chute-Out title and collect the top prize of $7,500.
The Cinch Chute Out is an invitational free-standing rodeo contest held each year the day after the 11-rodeo PRCA competition is completed. The winnings do not count towards NFR standings. Cinch Jeans have sponsored the Chute Out since its inception. A very popular events, there was not an empty seat in the coliseum.
The 2021 San Angelo Rodeo Cinch Chute-Out Final Standings:
Bareback riding: 1. Tim O’Connell, 89.5 points on Pickett Pro Rodeo’s Uncapped, $7,500; 2. Shane O’Connell, 87, $3,000; 3. Tilden Hooper, 85.5, $2,000.
Steer wrestling: 1, Tyler Pearson, 3.54 seconds, $7,500; 2. Will Lummus, 13.85, $3,000; 3. Dakota Eldridge, 14.83, $2,000.
Team roping: 1. Erich Rogers/Paden Bray, 5.03 seconds, $7,500; 2. Colby Lovell/Paul Eaves, 9.15, $3,000; no other qualified runs.
Saddle bronc riding: 1. Stetson Wright, 88.5 points on Pete Carr Pro Rodeo’s Big Tex, $7,500; 2. Kolby Wanchuk, 86.5, $3,000; no other qualified rides.
Tie-down roping: 1. Westyn Hughes, 8.71 seconds, $7,500; 2. Tuf Cooper, 9.34, $3,000; no other qualified runs.
Barrel racing: 1. Amanda Welsh, 14.023 seconds, $7,500; 2. Brittany Pozzi-Tonozzi, 14.222, $3,000; 3. Jana Bean, 14.775, $2,000.
Bull riding: No qualified rides. Josh Frost wins the title based on his first-round ride.
Ted Harbin contributed to this story.