SAN ANGELO, TX — The San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo Fiesta Roping Committee is pleased to announce the Cinch Roping Fiesta Match Ropers for 2017. The Fiesta will be held at the Rodeo Fairgrounds Oct. 28.
Two-time Fiesta Champion, 10-time NFR qualifier, and 2005 NFR Tie-Down Champion Ryan Jarrett will square off against three-time NFR qualifier and 2015 World Champion Tie-Down roping champion Caleb Smidt.
Jarrett comes back to San Angelo as the reigning champion with two consecutive wins in 2015 and 2016. The San Angelo Roping Committee has conveyed the invite and it has been accepted by Smidt to showcase his talent here.
The Fiesta is the world’s richest, for a winner takes all prize of $20,000.
Smidt was the 2015 Invitational winner and has multiple top placings at San Angelo in both the Roping Fiesta and Rodeo.
“The matchup this year is outstanding”, says roping chairman Tony Churchill. “Jarrett and Smidt are two of the best tie-down ropers in the world, and they will be showcased right here in San Angelo this October.”
San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo Executive Director Justin Jonas added, “The Association strives to provide the very best ropers for the match. It is the main attraction on Saturday and the battle between two of the most consistent and talented ropers in the world should be one of the best.”
This is the first time in 20 years roping legend Cody Ohl is not included as a Match Roping competitor. The committee wants to acknowledge that his record of 15 wins and only five losses. Ohl is currently managing a shoulder injury but has been extended an honorary invitation to compete in the invitational calf roping, also held on Oct. 28, should he choose to attend.
The SASSR founded the Roping Fiesta in 1954 as a way to help generate revenue for the association in the off-season from the stock show and rodeo that is held in February each year. The Roping Fiesta has always been at least a two-day event, though the events featured have varied to include calf roping, team roping, steer wrestling, steer roping and double mugging.
Calf Roping became one of the two staples of the Roping Fiesta in 1962, when the committee added a match roping. A match roping is two contestants facing off on a set number of calves for the coveted title. Match ropings require not only great physical ability, but mental stamina as well.
Steer Roping is the foundation of the Roping Fiesta, and the one dominant event that has always been held. This event is truly one that was developed from ranching techniques to help doctor animals in pasture or field settings. As the number of steer roping events across the nation continue to decrease, we are proud to offer this event in preserving western heritage.
The Roping Fiesta dirt has seen as many national qualifiers and world champions in men's timed events, as just about any arena you will find. The event serves as a great reunion for roping enthusiasts from across the nation, and is a bit of a homecoming for all West Texans.
Tickets for the 2017 Fiesta go on sale Sept. 5 at the SASSRA office located at 200 west 43rd at 8:00 a.m. Phone orders are be taken at 325-653-7785. Saturday tickets for the Invitational and Match Roping will be sold for $12 each and Sunday’s Steer Roping and Double Mugging tickets will be $10 each.