PRYOR, OK —
GUTHRIE — It’s only fitting that Trevor Brazile’s record-tying 18th ProRodeo world championship came inside the Lazy E Arena Nov. 9.
The arena that was built for steer roping was home to most of Guy Allen’s 18 gold buckles, so Brazile tied “The Legend” on Saturday night in the grandest of fashions – he won the 10th go-round with the fastest run of the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping and earned his fourth Steer Roping World Championship, which matches his heading, three tie-down roping and 10 all-around gold buckles.
“It’s special anywhere, but especially where I really got started,” said Brazile, whose 9.0-second run in the final go-round helped him stave off three-time champ Rocky Patterson for the first world championship of the 2013 ProRodeo season. “I was a student of this game before I ever started team roping or calf roping.
“This is what my dad did. This is what I watched; it’s what I emulated when I was roping the dummy. I tripped a bale of hay more times than most people know.”
All those years of roping, practicing, pretending have paid off quite well for the King of the Cowboys, the only three-event National Finals qualifier in the sport who is on a one-way street toward his 11th all-around gold buckle – Brazile has qualified for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in both tie-down roping and team roping, where he will head for another world champion, Patrick Smith.
But his greatness in the roping box came through in this two-day championship. Brazile won four go-rounds and earned an event-best $26,462. He finished his season with $84,221, just a little more than $4,000 ahead of Patterson, the 2009, ’10 and ’12 world champ from Pratt, Kan. In fact, Patterson held a $1,108 lead over Brazile heading into the final go-round.
“Anybody that says there’s no pressure in that situation is a liar, because all the miles we go, all the years of preparation … the chances of gold buckles are so few and far between that you don’t want to mess those up.
“When we’re kids, that’s what we’ve played over and over in our mind a thousand times. You don’t get your confidence from anything but the preparation and your practice coming into those events.”
Brazile knew he needed to put the pressure on Patterson, who was the last to rope. After JoJo LeMond of Andrews, Texas, posted a 9.4 and Joe Wells posted a 10.3, Brazile realized he needed to be fast.
“When I saw the round was getting tough, I was really kind of thankful, because it was kind of playing into my deal,” Brazile said. “I thought, ‘If I can get in front of one of those, then they’re going to have to go at it.’ I also couldn’t fold right there either.
“It makes it so much more memorable.”
It was also quite a memorable weekend for 41-year-old Tony Reina, who, in his first qualification to the Clem McSpadden, won the average championship, roping and tying down all 10 steers in a cumulative time of 142.2 seconds.
“It’s awesome,” said Reina, a 1999 NFR qualifier in tie-down roping from Wharton, Texas. “That’s the most coveted buckle besides the gold buckle. It’s an endurance contest when you run 10 head, especially in the steer roping where there are so many variables.”