It was another great match at the 65th Annual Cinch Roping Fiesta. Ryan Jarrett defeated Shane Hanchey on a 12-head match with a 162.54 aggregate total time. The lead over Hanchey was a clean 45.13 seconds. A quick glance at the total and it may look a little lop-sided, but there is always a little more to the story.
This year was scheduled to be Ryan Jarrett’s attempt to avoid a two-year consecutive losing streak after last year’s loss to first year invite roper Caleb Smidt. Smidt rescinded his invitation to the defend his title just a short seven days prior to the event.The roping committee, under the direction of Roping Committee Chairman Tony Churchill, made one call to Shane Hanchey to take the place in the match against Jarrett.This match has a reputation to its venue, ONLY NFR TIE-DOWN champions in front of this crowd. As Hanchey leads the qualifying into this years NFR, and a Gold Buckle to back it up, he took the invitation with only a couple preparation days available before roping well over two tons of calves.
The calves are a little larger and the score is a little longer…and it helps to prepare and condition for this event, of which Hanchey had neither. Jarrett roped a businessmen’s match from the start to the finish. With every run his aggressiveness and experience showed true. After the fifth calf his lead was 13.44 seconds over Hanchey. This is a “rope until you miss match,” which means ropers can carry two loops and if those break, come back to the chute to get a third.If a ropers calf kicks loose of the tie hold of 6 seconds it is a 60 second penalty.
On the sixth calf Hanchey rode up, reached a little and missed.His horse set up, as it should, and then he had to regroup. He did have a second rope, but riding last year's calf-roping horse of the year SI (Simon Cowell), he thought dragging the first rope under him while working the second rope, may create an ever larger problem than catching the calf. He needed to rebuild his loop while he rode down the pen. The second rope on his saddle was only a replacement should he break his first rope. It cost him with a 72.03 second run. At the midway point of the match Jarrett had a 54.45 second advantage.That spread is hard to overcome unless the luck of the draw holds true to both ropers, who rope the same calves over the length of the match.
Jarrett had his own dose of drama on his tenth calf, he had to two-loop him, but unlike Hanchey he had two strings on the saddle and made it pay. The exact same circumstance that cost his competitor 72 seconds was only a 30.09 run.Two strings proved themselves almost 40 seconds faster than one that had to be rebuilt. After that run the spread remained a comfortable 40 second cushion with two calves to go.
In the end Jarrett and Hanchey finished showing the crowd why each was a true competitor. Hanchey for taking a shot at a Fiesta Title with very little preparation, and Ryan Jarrett for proving he is one of the most consistent ropers in the game.May they each have a profitable NFR. In the end it is Ryan Jarrett 162.54 and Shane Hanchey 207.67.Thanks to each for providing some of the best entertainment roping fans could ever witness.