Rice and Lewis Win Yeti Open Ju­nior NFR at 2018 USTRC Cinch Na­tional Fi­nals of Team Rop­ing

Spin to Win Rodeo - - Ropers -

Hobbs, New Mexico’s Korbin Rice and Hermleigh, Texas’ Zant Paul Lewis won the Yeti Open Ju­nior NFR af­ter rop­ing four head in 26.40 sec­onds, worth $14,700.

“I roped in the #13 ear­lier, and me and [Lewis] ac­tu­ally won fast time and that was about it,” Rice said. “It wasn’t all that great un­til now.”

The young guns came into the short round in the num­ber-one po­si­tion with a fast time of 18.78 on three head and had plenty of time to rope to hang onto the win­ning spot. But, the short round was one for the books with head­ers reach­ing and heel­ers heel­ing two feet over their horses’ necks.

“When­ever they started knock­ing them down in four, I thought that it might get a lit­tle tough, but it’s no fun if it’s not,”

Rice said.

“I just knew that we were go­ing to have to go knock one more down,” Lewis said. “We were 18 on three, so we had four sec­onds on them all. All we re­ally had to do was make a good run in the short round and get paid. When they said we just had to be 10 I knew I just had to go get him caught and rope two feet.”

Rice and Lewis al­most missed the chance to rope, but thanks to some con­fu­sion, the fateful pair­ing came to­gether.

“Ev­ery­body thought that it was en­ter three times at first,” Rice said. “A bunch of peo­ple had al­ready sent their en­tries in and I hadn’t yet—I’m just kind of a last-minute guy. Both of my other heel­ers had al­ready had their head­ers send their en­tries in, so I couldn’t rope with my usual runs.”

Rice re­cently bought his sor­rel who helped him with his snappy head loops.

“I bought him from Sloan Hend­ley,” Rice said. “He’s only 9-years-old. This is the first rop­ing that I’ve ever taken him to. He works out­stand­ing—he’s easy and flat. He just lets me do what­ever I want to do.”

Lewis was on a horse that’s fa­mil­iar with win­ning.

“His name is Mack,” Lewis said. “He’s 14 years old. I got him from Randy Lewis. He won prob­a­bly $300,000 on him at the World Se­ries Fi­nale. Ever since I bought that horse, I think he wins for me some­times. He’s just a win­ner. Just an­other nor­mal day at a team rop­ing, ex­cept this one is a big one.”

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