Spin to Win Rodeo - - Departments - with Bil­lie Jack Saebens

with Bil­lie Jack Saebens

Iwas at the US Fi­nals two years ago rop­ing with (WNFR header and BFI champ) Drew Horner, and we were 19 on three head. We were just a sec­ond or a sec­on­dand-a-half off the lead­ers. Chad Mas­ters and Travis Graves were about the same on three, and they went right be­fore us. They were some-kind-of short five, and I watched that and thought, ‘That’s what I need to do.’ I threw way too fast try­ing to match Travis, and I missed him. As it turns out, if we’d have got­ten the next two steers down in 15 sec­onds, we’d have won third and prob­a­bly $12,000 a man.

That taught me right then that I’m best off if I don’t try to beat any­body and just do my job. I’m not try­ing to out-rope any­body now. I just want to catch the steer my header turns for me.

Guys like Champ (Clay O’Brien Cooper) are so good at that. The other day over at Nampa, the steer wasn’t very good on the end of the rope no mat­ter what Der­rick (Be­gay) did. But for Champ, it was no big deal. A lot of peo­ple, my­self in­cluded, would have just thrown and missed. Champ just made sure he got him caught. Then they bounced back and got a good check in the next round on a bet­ter steer.

Some­times not beat­ing my­self means go­ing back to the ba­sics, too. I’ve got good fun­da­men­tals, so I have a base I can go back to where I know how to catch. It might not be my fastest run, and it might not be my best run, but I know I can catch when I’m fo­cus­ing on those fun­da­men­tals. I can re­build from there. I make sure that I feel ev­ery­thing, and I make sure my horse is work­ing good. It’s bet­ter than search­ing for some­thing to work—at least I have one thing I can go right back to that can get me back on track—my fun­da­men­tals.

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