Ironmen Crowned at Timed Event Championship

Jordan Ketscher becomes the 2018 Ironman while Myles Neighbors takes the Junior Ironman title.

From the CINCH Timed Event Championship

Jordan Ketscher roped, wrestled and tied 25 animals in a cumulative time of 324.3 seconds to win the title, finishing 19.1 seconds faster than the runner-up, Clayton Hass. (James Phifer photos)

Jordan Ketscher is the 14th man in the 34-year history of the CINCH Timed Event Championship to claim the prestigious title.

With it, he became the first Californian in five years to win the “Ironman of ProRodeo.”

“I’ve always watched this event, and just to be here and be part of the greats – Trevor (Brazile), Cash (Myers) and Kyle (Lockett) – is a dream come true,” said Ketscher, 28, of Squaw Valley, Calif.

He roped, wrestled and tied 25 animals in a cumulative time of 324.3 seconds to win the title, finishing 19.1 seconds faster than the runner-up, Clayton Hass of Stephenville, Texas; the three-time National Finals Rodeo qualifier in steer wrestling had his best run at the Timed Event after many years competing at the Lazy E Arena the opening weekend of March.

“This meant a lot, because I didn’t get to come here last year because of a conflict with a Champions Challenge event,” Hass said, referring to a PRCA event in which he was contractually obligated to compete. “I got a chance to come back and prove that I’m supposed to be here.

“This is a bit of redemption I’ve placed here a few times, and to stay solid through all 25 head means a lot.”

Ketscher entered Sunday’s fifth and final round as the No. 1 man, but he had just a 7.1-second lead on Myers, who moved to third after the first discipline of the day, heading. Brazile, the Timed Event’s only seven-time winner, posted a 6.7-second run to move into the runner-up position.

Myers then fell all the way to sixth after suffering a 60-second penalty in tie-down roping when his calf got up from the tie before the required 6 seconds – a 60 is equivalent to a no-time at a traditional rodeo. An event later, Brazile joined him after losing his dally in heeling.

The standings shuffle continued through the final performance of the five-round affair. When the competition ended, the top two men took the biggest prizes.

“It always helps to have $25,000,” Hass said, referring to his substantial second-place earnings. “The winter has been pretty good, but it could always be better. Now I’m just trying to move on throughout the year and make the NFR.” 

So, what brought the Texan the most pride in his performance over the weekend?

“The fact that I used my head, and I feel like I stayed focused,” he said. “Even when I had hiccups, I didn’t back off. I just roped my game.”

Ketscher has never been to the NFR, but he performed at an optimum level through the three days of competition, where cowboys battle the mental and physical challenges that come with the “Ironman.” 

“This is just so awesome,” he said of the event. “Everybody specializes in different events, so you’ve got to come here and do something you’re not comfortable with. It’s just a marathon.” 

He held the lead through much of the three-day championship and showed just why consistency is important in this game. And on the final day, when the thoughts of that big check came into his mind, he had to push them away and focus on the task at hand.

“I was trying not to overthink things, and I was just wanting to make every run like I had done the four previous rounds,” Ketscher said. “I wanted to trust myself and trust my horses to make it happen.” 

He will return a year from now as the reigning champion.

“I’m going to go home and work on a few things,” he said. “It’s going to be just as tough next year. There’s no need to slack off.

“Things happen here, and that’s what the Timed Event is all about. Anytime, as a cowboy, that you get a chance at $100,000, you have to love the opportunity.”

Myers did pick up a nice prize. His horse, "Diesel," was named the AQHA CINCH Timed Event Championship Top Horse.

The 2018 CINCH Timed Event Championship partners include CINCH – Jeans and Shirts, Priefert – Farm, Ranch & Rodeo, YETI Coolers, Montana Silversmiths, ABI Equine, RAM, RIDE TV, Carroll Original Wear, Big Tex Trailers, P&K Equipment, Cavender’s, Nutrena, The Team Roping Journal,  MacroAir, Bio S.I., National Saddlery, Cross Bar Gallery, John Vance Auto Group, Pendleton Whisky, CSI Saddle Pads, Formula 1 Noni, Guthrie CVB, Made In Oklahoma Coalition, J.W. Brooks Hat Co., Hilton Garden Inn – Edmond, America’s Best Value Inn – Guthrie,  Sherwin-Williams, Anderson Bean Boot Co., Chris Neal’s Future Stars and Rising Stars Calf Ropings, and the National Little Britches Rodeo Association. 

The 2018 CINCH Timed Event Championship is a Lazy E Production. For more information on the CINCH Timed Event Championship or other Lazy E events, contact the Lazy E Arena, 9600 Lazy E Drive, Guthrie, OK  73044, (405) 282-RIDE, (800) 595-RIDE or visit www.lazye.com.

RESULTS

First round: 1. Cash Myers, 51.8 seconds, $3,000; 2. Trevor Brazile, 65.1, $2,000; 3. Russell Cardoza, 67.7, $1,000. 

Second round: 1. Erich Rogers, 55.0 seconds, $3,000; 2. JoJo LeMond, 59, $2,000; 3. Jordan Ketscher, $1,000.
Third round: 1. Jordan Ketscher, 56.0 seconds, $3,000; 2. Trevor Brazile, 57.6, $2,000; 3. Clayton Hass, 57.9, $1,000.

Fourth round: 1. Cash Myers, 51.0 seconds, $3,000; 2. Marcus Theriot, 51.3, $2,000; 3. Clayton Hass, 55.0, $1,000.
Fifth round: 1. Russell Cardoza, 53.3 seconds, $3,000; 2. Shank Edwards, $2,000; 3. Lane Karney, 60.1, $1,000.
Average leaders: 
1. Jordan Ketscher, 324.3 seconds on 25 runs, $100,000; 2. Clayton Hass, 343.4, $25,000; 3. Marcus Theriot, 379.9, $15,000; 4. Lane Karney, 386.1, $10,000; 5. JoJo LeMond, 398.9, $7,500; 6. Kyle Lockett, 403.4, $5,000; 7. Cash Myers, 406.9, $4,500; 8. Trevor Brazile, 408.3, $3,000.

Neighbors Takes the Junior Ironman Championship

The biggest attribute for cowboys competing in multiple events is being consistent through the contest. 

Myles Neighbors was the most consistent through his three days at the Jr. Ironman Championship, which led to his title and the first-place check worth $10,000. He roped, wrestled and tied 12 animals in 167.8 seconds to claim the title. 

“This is a marathon, not a sprint,” said Neighbors, 19, of Benton, Ark., repeating the adage passed on by longtime contestants of the CINCH Timed Event Championship. “You’ve got to keep knocking them down. Even if you break a barrier, you just don’t take a 60. If you don’t take a 60, you’ll be the champ.”

In this unique competition – where the 10 cowboys compete in heading, heeling, tie-down roping and steer wrestling in each round – a 60-second run is equivalent to a no-time at a traditional rodeo. The Arkansas cowboy was the only man in the field who didn’t suffer that penalty. In fact, his longest run came Sunday morning’s final round, when he stopped the clock in 31.1 seconds in heeling.

“I think the key was my horsepower and consistency,” he said. “You’ve got to have horsepower here. You’ve got the score them, you’ve got to run them down, and you’ve got to be consistent. You’ve got to catch everything.” 

He also needed things to go his way. Heading into the final event of the weekend, Neighbors was in second lace and trailed leader Wyatt Hansen of Oakdale, Calif., by 30.4 seconds. But Hansen struggled in steer wrestling and suffered his first 60 of the weekend.

That pushed Neighbors to the top spot when it counted most. Hansen fell to second place, while the reigning champion, Bo Yaussi of Udall, Kan., finished third.

A year ago, Neighbors won the opening round but fell off the pace through the end. He took the lessons gained 12 months ago into account while chasing the championship.

“I found out I needed to start reading my cattle a lot better, knowing what my cattle are supposed to do,” said Neighbors, who is attending Northeast Texas Community College on a rodeo scholarship. “This is easily the biggest thing I’ve ever won. This is an opportunity we don’t have very often. This is a one-of-a-kind deal for us. We don’t get to run at $10,000 every day.”

In all, he pocketed $11,000, adding the $1,000 prize for winning Saturday’s second round. Yaussi won the first round, while Ryder Ladner of Kiln, Miss., posted the fastest round of the weekend, 36.6 seconds, to win Sunday. 

For the second straight year, Chance, the steer wrestling horse owned by J.D. Draper of Oakley, Kan., earned the AQHA Jr. Ironman Top Horse Award.

The 2018 CINCH Timed Event Championship partners include CINCH – Jeans and Shirts, Priefert – Farm, Ranch & Rodeo, YETI Coolers, Montana Silversmiths, ABI Equine, RAM, RIDE TV, Carroll Original Wear, Big Tex Trailers, P&K Equipment, Cavender’s, Nutrena, The Team Roping Journal,  MacroAir, Bio S.I., National Saddlery, Cross Bar Gallery, John Vance Auto Group, Pendleton Whisky, CSI Saddle Pads, Formula 1 Noni, Guthrie CVB, Made In Oklahoma Coalition, J.W. Brooks Hat Co., Hilton Garden Inn – Edmond, America’s Best Value Inn – Guthrie,  Sherwin-Williams, Anderson Bean Boot Co., Chris Neal’s Future Stars and Rising Stars Calf Ropings, and the National Little Britches Rodeo Association. 

The 2018 CINCH Timed Event Championship is a Lazy E Production. For more information on the CINCH Timed Event Championship or other Lazy E events, contact the Lazy E Arena, 9600 Lazy E Drive, Guthrie, OK  73044, (405) 282-RIDE, (800) 595-RIDE or visit www.lazye.com.

RESULTS

Jr. Ironman first round: 1. Bo Yaussi, 42.3 seconds, $1,000.

Jr. Ironman second round: 1. Myles Neighbors, 42.3 seconds, $1,000.

Jr. Ironman third round: 1. Ryder Ladner, 36.6 seconds, $1,000

Jr. Ironman average leaders: 1. Myles Neighbors, 167.8 seconds, $10,000; 2. Wyatt Hansen, 193.2, $5,000; 3. Bo Yaussi, 197.1, $2,000.

Myles Neighbors, 2018 Junior Ironman (James Phifer photo)