Round 4 starts the second runs on the first pen of steers. That's the biggest, strongest set, that saw headers like Derrick Begay get a barrier in Round 1 and guys like Riley Minor and Clay Smith take no-times. We asked NFR heeler and world-class horseman Billie Jack Saebens to help us break down the prospects for Round 4 and beyond, including how each horse is working after three runs. 

Riley Minor and Brady Minor

Round 3: 4.1, 2/3

Round Winnings: $18,192.31

Total NFR Earnings: $28,192.31 (Riley Minor and Brady Minor)

World Standings Earnings: $109,745.06 (Riley Minor); $108,553.44 (Brady Minor)

Average: 11

World Standings: 10

Saebens' take: You sure wouldn’t expect them to be a team that’s missed one at this point. Some people don’t always think of them as the fastest team, but if Riley keeps nailing the barrier and using that horse, and Brady does what he does, they’ll still win a bunch. Riley should be so good on these big, strong steers in Round 4 because that horse is so good.

Jake Long Colonel

Jake Long and Colonel

Luke Brown and Jake Long

Round 3: 4.3, 5/6/7

Round Winnings: $3,666.66

Total NFR Earnings: $29,461.53

World Standings Earnings: $112,563.70

Average: 9

World Standings: 9

Saebens' take: This is another team you wouldn’t expect a miss from by Round 4. They can be as fast as anybody there on any steer. Rockstar has done his normal deal there, giving Luke the go Luke likes. As long as he stays running and going to the cow enough, he’ll be good. Colonel is spot on as usual. He actually looks better this year than he has. He’s moving his feet through the turn better. There have been times where he’s quit moving his feet and caused to take those kamikaze shots he's had to take in that building. You aren’t seeing that this year because of how good he’s working.

Bubba Buckaloo and Chase Tryan

Round 3: NT

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $39,121.79

World Standings Earnings: $127,989.78 (Bubba Buckaloo); $107,405.60 (Chase Tryan)

Average: 10

World Standings: 4 (Bubba Buckaloo); 11 (Chase Tryan)

Saebens' take: Those two, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a couple day moneys out of them. Bubba can be really fast. His horse works with him and lets him do it. Chase is really stepping it up and doing stuff fast. He’s heeling so good.

Derrick Begay and Cory Petska

Round 3: 4.0, 1

Round Winnings: $26,230.77

Total NFR Earnings: 36,230.77

World Standings Earnings: $121,067.92 (Derrick Begay); $127,524.80 (Cory Petska)

Average: 6

World Standings: 6 (Derrick Begay); 5 (Cory Petska)

Saebens' take: They’re one of those teams who could win four more day moneys if Derrick keeps hitting the barrier. As long as he isn’t pulling across there too much, they’ll win a lot. Derrick is rank in there, and everybody knows what Petska does. Their horses are working good. And those two horses fit together well, too.

Cody Snow and Wesley Thorp

Round 3: 4.2, 4

Round Winnings: $11,000

Total NFR Earnings: $41,730.77

World Standings Earnings: $133,593.50 (Cody Snow); $129,904.17 (Wesley Thorp)

Average: 7/8

World Standings: 3 (Cody Snow); 4 (Wesley Thorp)

Saebens' take: That buckskin mare is sweet and works good in there. It looks so easy for both of them, too. It looks like kindergarten math to them—just simple. They’ll catch the rest of them and crush the average and place a lot. The funny thing about great horses, like that one Wesley's riding, even when they screw up, they let you catch. Wesley wasn’t in as good of a spot as he’d like in Round 3, but that horse let him catch anyway.

Clay Tryan and Travis Graves

Round 3: 4.6

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $25,794.87

World Standings Earnings: $122,784.90 (Clay Tryan); $118,927.76 (Travis Graves)

Average: 4

World Standings: 5 (Clay Tryan) 6 (Travis Graves)

Saebens' take: I think you can just expect to see them doing what they do. They’re going to be short-four every time. Clay’s horse is working good, and I love TG riding the bay. That’s a dang good horse for him here. He looks as good as everything he’s ever roped on here. They’re going to place in there and probably win a go round. Look for them to be placing every single night.

Aaron Tsinigine Trey Yates NFR

Aaron Tsinigine and Trey Yates

Aaron Tsinigine and Trey Yates

Round 3: 4.1, 2/3

Round Winnings: $18,192.31

Total NFR Earnings: $34,961.54

World Standings Earnings: $119,006.03 (Aaron Tsinigine); $133,400.48 (Trey Yates)

Average: 2

World Standings: 7 (Aaron Tsinigine); 3 (Trey Yates)

Saebens' take: I think those two, the same as Erich Rogers and Clint Summers, are so close to nailing their runs there. If Trey can just get to the end of them all the way, they'll be hard to beat. Trey and that bay over the Fourth, they were nothing nice. Trey can push on up there a little more and Tsinigine can do what he does. Tsinigine switched horses last night, and the bay he got on really let him work. 

DSC_2971

Chad Masters and Joseph Harrison

Round 3: 4.4 +10

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $10,000

World Standings Earnings: $95,342.14 (Chad Masters); $114,515.04 (Joseph Harrison)

Average: 13

World Standings: 11 (Chad Masters); 8 (Joseph Harrison)

Saebens' take: Missing another won’t happen. Chad is letting Joseph ride to the end of it and set them down. Chad’s horse will stay good and won’t get to ducking or anything like that. Joseph has been on Street. That’s a great horse, and if he has to change horses for some reason, he can just get on another great one.

Dustin Egusquiza and Kory Koontz

Round 3: 4.4 +5

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $10,000

World Standings Earnings: $116,396.03

Average: 12

World Standings: 8 (Dustin Egusquiza); 7 (Kory Koontz)

Saebens' take: They’ve had a rough start a little bit. But they’ll turn it around. Dustin has done a pretty good job of turning them. Dawg will get to where he wants to be quick, and when they do that they’ll be fast. It looked like Remix was cowing off a touch more than what Dawg would like to. Dawg likes them to get up there closer to stuff. That horse is really watching the cow on the first couple.

Clay Smith and Paul Eaves 

Round 3: 4.3, 5/6/7

Round Winnings: $3,666.66

Total NFR Earnings: $39,897.43

World Standings Earnings: $155,241.98

Average: 7/8

World Standings: 2

Saebens' take: You pretty much expect what you saw these last two rounds the rest of the week. Clay’s capable of doing that every time. He’s got great horses that finish so good. Paul is roping better than he ever has. They don’t have anything to lose, so expect them to let their hair down every night.

Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira

Round 3: 4.3, 5/6/7

Round Winnings: $3,666.66

Total NFR Earnings: $44,128.20

World Standings Earnings: $159,128.20 (Kaleb Driggers); $160,063.72 (Junior Nogueira)

Average: 1

World Standings: 1

Saebens' take: If they want to win the day money, they can win the day money. If they want to win fifth, they can win fifth. Kaleb is so good, so this is whatever he wants to do. If he wants to be 3 and win it, he can. If he wants to be 4.5 and win fifth, he can. For one of the guys who reaches, that horse is going the same direction as the cow the whole time. Just like Kaleb splitting the horns and fishing it on him, if that horse isn’t staying and running with the cow, that ain’t happening. That’s what makes Kaleb the best there is right now—the way every horse he has just goes to the cow. 

Rhen Richard and Quinn Kesler

Round 3: 4.2 +5

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $27,557.69

World Standings Earnings: $92,789.71 (Rhen Richard); $88,906.45 (Quinn Kesler)

Average: 3

World Standings: 12 (Rhen Richard); 13 (Quinn Kesler) 

Saebens' take: Rhen is doing such a freaking good job from the corner to the cow. He’s taking that start, and last night he nailed it. When he’s leaving there, he’s going to the cow. There’s no hesitation, no pulling. That’s huge right there. He’ll give Quinn a lot of chances. They’ll catch a lot of them, place in rounds, and stay good in the average.

Lane Ivy and Buddy Hawkins II

Round 3: NT

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $10,000

World Standings Earnings: $77,457.61 (Lane Ivy); $74,451.01 (Buddy Hawkins II

Average: 14/15

World Standings: 15

Saebens' take: I don’t know why he didn’t bring that little bay he rode all year, but that horse was great. Right now leaving the box, his swing isn’t in time with the horse. He’s got to do something different, change his horse, change his swing, something. He gets it on them so fast on the bay, I think that’s what I would do if I were him.

Tyler Wade and Cole Davison

Round 3: NT

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $10,000

World Standings Earnings: $83,145.02 (Tyler Wade); $76,251.57 (Cole Davison)

Average: 14/15

World Standings: 14

Saebens' take: They just need to catch one and break the ice. He keeps hitting that panel with his first swing off to the left. It dang sure cost him last night. They just need to make one good run and Cole get around them better and stop the clock and turn it around for the rest of the week.

Erich Rogers and Clint Summers

Round 3: 6.6 +10

Round Winnings: --

Total NFR Earnings: $16,769.23

World Standings: $85,123.45 (Erich Rogers); $96,236.20 (Clint Summers)

Average: 5

World Standings: 13 (Erich Rogers); 12 (Clint Summers)

Saebens' take: I look for them to step up a little bit. I don’t know that they’ll change their game plan, but maybe more aggressive on a few. Look for Erich to be taking that start more and Clint to push around them and heel them on the first hop—the run that Rogers is known for with Petska there. TRJ

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