Brett Hoffman

Mason Clements finished 16th in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association bareback riding world title race last year, one slot shy of earning a trip to the December Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

But if the Draper, Utah, cowboy continues to ride with the aggressiveness that he displayed at pro rodeos in Fort Worth and Denver last weekend, he will qualify for this year’s Las Vegas championships.

At the Fort Worth Stock Show's Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association show, Clements earned $2,650 as the result of placing in both a Friday night (Jan. 24) and a Saturday matinee (Jan. 25) performance. He will advance to the semifinal round and he will compete either on Feb. 6 or Feb. 7.

After turning in a lofty score of 88.5 in Fort Worth during the Saturday matinee on Jan. 25, Clements immediately headed to DFW Airport and flew to Denver to compete in the National Western Stock Show Rodeo’s Saturday night semifinal performance. During the semifinal perf, he tied for third with an 86 and advanced to the rodeo’s 12-man final round.

During the Denver rodeo's final round on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 26, Clements clinched the bareback riding title with an 89.5-point effort aboard a bronc named Gander Goose that’s owned by the Cervi Championship Rodeo Co.

Clements earned $7,367 throughout the Jan. 16-26 Denver rodeo, which will help him in his attempt to earn a third National Finals berth. He qualified for the National Finals in 2017 and in 2018.

Clements said the trip from the Fort Worth rodeo to the Denver rodeo reminded him of how competitors aggressively travel in July when there's an abundance of higher paying pro rodeos across North America.

"It felt like it was July and it was only January," Clements said. "I didn't want to have to fly and compete in two rodeos in one day. Both those were big checks to go get."

After narrowly missing the NFR last year, Clements said he has lots of determination.

"I know that I didn't leave anything on the table last year, I gave it 110 percent," Clements said. "However, not making Vegas gives you more determination."

Clements, 29, said he aspires to stay mentally focused and physically sound throughout the year.

"I stay hungry," he said. "I also want to stay healthy to give myself the best shot."

Bill Tutor of Huntsville is another cowboy who did not qualify for the 2019 National Finals in bareback riding, but has qualified for the NFR in 2017 and 2018. Tutor and Richmond Champion, another former NFR qualifier who is from The Woodlands, tied for fifth place with scores of 86.

Denver’s renowned National Western Stock Show Rodeo used a tournament format for the first time to determine champions and the final round was broadcasted live on the Cowboy Channel. The rider who had the best final round score or time clinched the title.

The Fort Worth Stock Show also is using a tournament format to determines its champions. The performances are being broadcasted live on the Cowboy Channel, which is a sister channel to RFD-TV.

The 2020 Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo concludes Feb. 8 with the FWSSR's PRCA rodeo’s final round. For ticket information on the 2020 Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo, visit fwssr.com or call 817-877-2420.

Other Denver champions

According to prorodeo.com, the other winners at the $572,742 Denver rodeo were steer wrestler Stetson Jorgensen (4.0 seconds); team ropers Cody Snow and Paul Eaves (4.2 seconds); saddle bronc rider Rusty Wright (91 points on The Cervi Brothers' Ricky Bobby); barrel racer Carly Taylor (14.99 seconds); bull rider Brody Yeary (83.5 points on Cervi Championship Rodeo’s Rawhide) and tie-down roper Adam Gray (7.2 seconds).

Gray, who lives in Seymour, clinched the tie-down roping title in Denver with the time of 7.2 seconds during Sunday’s final round. Gray earned $6,369 throughout the rodeo. Gray also won the tie-down roping title in Denver five years ago.

Shad Mayfield of Clovis, N.M., finished second in the tie-down roping title race with a finals time of 7.9. The 19-year-old cowboy is ranked No. 1 in the PRCA's 2020 tie-down roping world title race.

Four-time world champion Tuf Cooper, who has homes in Weatherford and Decatur, finished fifth in tie-down roping with an 8.2. Meanwhile, Cooper's cousin, Stetson Vest of Childress, finished seventh in tie-down roping with a 10.4.

John Douch of Huntsville finished fifth in the tie-down roping finals with an 8.1. Douch finished 16th in the PRCA's tie-down roping world title race last year, one slot shy of qualifying for the NFR.

PBR update

On the Professional Bull Riders circuit, Jose Vitor Leme, a Brazilian who lives in the Decatur area, clinched the title at the Jan. 24-26 Unleash The Beast tour stop in Sacramento and earned $41,845.

World class PBR competitors will be in Arlington on Feb. 15-16 to compete in the Global Cup, an international team competition at AT&T Stadium. For information, visit pbr.com.

Email Brett at bchoffman77@earthlink.net.

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