Idaho ropers look to weave web of glory at RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo
March 26, 2015
Rob and Dan Webb had a good night at the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo March 25 – even putting themselves in position to make a little history – and they were fairly certain their dad, Kirk, didn't get to see any of it on the WranglerNetwork.com webcast.
"You can bet he was out feeding the cattle," said Dan Webb, with a grin, "taking care of the farm's 400 mother cows. Our mom (Stevia) might have watched us, but dad was pretty sure to be out there working."
That's how it has always been on the Webb farm in Wendell, Idaho. Work comes first. Rob and Dan learned their work ethic and how to rodeo from their dad, a nine-time RNCFR qualifier. Even if Kirk's not watching, he's present in their every run.
It's part of the reason that Rob, 26, and Dan, 31, have become the best team roping pair in Idaho and are now in position to make a run at becoming the first team in Wilderness Circuit history to win a title at the RNCFR. They took the first-round lead on Wednesday night with a 4.9-second run.
There is reason for the Webb brothers to draw extra inspiration from their dad these days. He had a really bad horse wreck a couple of years back and ended up in a coma. The first weeks were rough. Doctors weren't sure he was going to make it.
"But now he's back driving and working," Dan said. "It's been great."The Webb brothers feel like they were born into their rodeo life. They live across a hay field from each other in Wendell, practice their roping on a regular schedule while balancing farm work, developing Rob's fencing company and other endeavors.
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"I was probably in middle school when we started roping together full time," said Rob Webb, "and we've just stayed with it."They had their best year in 2014 when they finished second at the Reno (Nev.) Rodeo and split a round at the Pendleton (Ore.) Round-Up. Rob finished No. 47 among headers in the Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings, and Dan was No. 56 among heelers.They won the Wilderness Circuit year-end title and the RAM Wilderness Circuit Finals Rodeo.
Other first-round leaders to come out of Wednesday night's performance at the Silver Spurs Arena were bareback rider Tim O'Connell (83 points on Silver Spurs Club's Ned Ross), steer wrestler Beau Clark (4.6 seconds), saddle bronc rider Jacobs Crawley (84 points on Stace Smith Pro Rodeo's Famous Dave's), tie-down ropers Ryan Jarrett and Jesse Clark (8.0 seconds), barrel racer Lindsay Kruse (16.45 seconds) and bull rider Joe Frost (76 points on Smith, Harper & Morgan Rodeo's Nutcase).
Crawley is the defending champion and is trying to join Jesse Wright (2010-11) as the only cowboys to win back-to-back saddle bronc riding titles in the 29-year history of this rodeo.
The tournament-style RNFCR format determines the national circuit champions in each event. All 24 qualifiers from the 12 circuits compete in the two preliminary rounds of the rodeo. The top eight contestants from each event advance to the semifinal round, with all previous scores and times thrown out. The top four then move on to the final round, a sudden-death competition that determines the national circuit champion in each event.Because the top four contestants begin that final round with a clean slate, each one has an equal opportunity to claim an RNCFR title.
Event winners each receive a $20,000 voucher toward the purchase of a new RAM Truck and a Polaris Ranger utility vehicle in addition to their winnings.
Wrangler Network is airing live webcasts of the rodeo's first four performances and, after the event, highlights from the RNCFR will be televised on CBS Sports Net; see ProRodeo.com/TV for the telecast schedule.