Weapon of Choice: These Are the Ropes the Top 15 *Headers* Will Use in Las Vegas
Which ropes will the best headers in the world be swinging and slinging in the Thomas & Mack?
team ropes on rack

The desert climate of Las Vegas paired with the high-pressure $1.1-million team roper payout in Las Vegas raises the stakes for the NFR headers’ rope choice in the Thomas & Mack.

Some of the top 15 team ropers will stick with the same rope they use all season, while others will adjust their NFR rope choice for the climate and steer and horn size.

Here’s the NFR headers’ rope-choice analysis to start:

  • Classic has the most ropes (and endorsees) in the Thomas & Mack with seven.
  • Of the seven Classic ropes used, four are Powerlines, all S lays .
  • Notably, Kaleb Driggers is the only endorsee using the Triton.
  • Classic Ropes are responsible for $698,684.70 in ProRodeo earnings within the top 15, averaging $99,812.10 in earnings.
  • Of the three endorsees using Lone Star RopesColeman Proctor, Tanner Tomlinson and Dustin Egusquiza—each will use a different rope and a different lay.
  • Lone Star’s three endorsees averaged $108,027.35, with a total earnings of $324,082.04.
  • Fast Back brings two endorsees to the Finals—Clay Tryan and Lightning Aguilera, using two different ropes, the Centerfire 2 XS and the Natural XS.
  • Fast Back’s two endorsees average $117,542.21 in earnings totaling $235,084.58 entering the Finals.
  • Cactus Ropes’ three endorsees—Andrew Ward at third, Riley Minor at 12th and Chad Masters at 14th—bring with them $301,084.73 in 2022 PRCA earnings, averaging $100,361.58 per man on the year.
  • Chad Masters and JR Dees are the only two unsure of their rope choice at this point. Chad plans to start with the Xplosion, but he could pull a Whistler out of his bag if it feels right. Per Dees, “I used a S all year long, but the horns are a lot littler, and I used a littler rope than I used all year when we broke in the steers. It felt a lot snappier and a lot quicker. With them littler this year than ever, I think I’m going to use an XS but if something out of the ordinary happens I’ll use a S.”  
  • Only two men—Driggers and Egusquiza—will use MS lays in their respective ropes.

So, What Ropes Will Each of the Top 15 Use?

World Standings Contestant Pre-NFR EarningsRope CompanyRopeLay
1Kaleb Driggers227,877.85ClassicTriton MS
2Clay Tryan144,663.14Fast BackCenterfire 2XS
3Andrew Ward124,618.63CactusXplosion
4Coleman Proctor 110,691.37Lone StarFever XS
5Tanner Tomlinson107,368.21Lone StarFrioS
6Dustin Egusquiza106,022.46Lone StarHelixMS
7Rhen Richard99,278.90ClassicPowerline LiteS
8Tyler Wade 98,572.98ClassicPowerlineS
9JR Dees96,045.09ClassicSpyderXS
10Cody Snow91,842.70ClassicPowerline LiteS
11Lightning Aguilera90,421.44Fast BackNaturalXS
12Riley Minor89,022.28CactusXplosionXS
13Clay Smith88,851.56ClassicPowerline
14Chad Masters87,443.82CactusFuture, WhistlerXS
15Jake Orman85,067.18ClassicHeatS
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