Top 5 Lay of the Land – Heading
Texan Colt Hilley holds onto first with 50 points, but he’s trailed closely by Alabama’s Aiden Perrett who earned 42 points and the No. 2 spot at two ropings in the past month. Perrett was a staple in last year’s race, but this marks his explosive entrance into this year’s USTRC Resistol Jr. Top 5.
A tick behind him lurks Oklahoma’s Gracie Drake with 36 points for the No. 3 position. Drake joined her first-ever Resistol Jr. race when she earned 24 points in Guthrie in July, to add to the 12 she’d accumulated earlier in the season.
The fourth and fifth holes remain in the hands of Texan Ace Ashford and New Jersey’s Tyler Mota, respectively. There is no change to their points—29 and 28 points—though they each drop two holes from second and third. Notably, now Mota shares his Top 5 placement with newcomer and Texan Callahan Taylor, who enters the standings after a few crucial wins this season.
Top 5 Lay of the Land – Heeling
Consider this our official welcome back to the Top 5 to Mr. Houston Childers, reigning Resistol Jr. champion. Childers, from Georgia, enters the race with 55 points earned entirely in the first weeks of August. It’s a 9-point lead over fellow newcomer, Texan Brant Cookston, who occupies No. 2 with 46 points.
Behind Childers and Cookston, last month’s Top 3—Texan Kelby Frizzell (40), Alabama’s Brit Smith (38) and Texan Jade Philipp (31)—take places three through 5 with no changes to their points.
Luverne, Alabama’s Aiden Perrett, who turns 17 this month, went to work in his home state this round. First, Perrett traveled to the Alabama Championships in July to win the #12.5 for 10 points and to take third in the #10.5 for 8 points. When he followed that up in August with three third-place wins—he took home checks in the #13.5, the #12.5 and the #10.5 at the Alabama Championship—the 24-point swell put him on the heels of Hilley’s 50 points with 42, worth No. 2 in this month’s standings.
Similarly, Gate, Oklahoma’s Gracie Drake has three home-state ropings to which she can attribute her No. position in the standings this month. She’s also found her sweet spot in the #8.5, which she took third in for 8 points at May’s Oklahoma Classic, seventh in for 4 points at June’s Oklahoma Championships, and second and fifth in for 9 and 6 points at the Guthrie Championships in July, where she also placed second in the #7 for 9 points. In total, Drake rounded up 36 points before dropping the flag on her 16th year before her birthday in August.
In a tie for the No. 5 spot, 12-year-old Callahan Taylor, of Canutillo, Texas, introduces himself to the USTRC Resistol Jr. race with 28 points. And, whereas Drake has established an affinity for the #8.5, Taylor appears to be fond of the #11.5. In it, he took third place for 8 points at May’s Tularosa Classic. Then, he won the division at July’s White Sands Championships and again at August’s Albuquerque Classic for 10 points each. Of note, the competition is tied behind him by only a single point.
Fairmount, Georgia’s Houston Childers turned 15 in September, just about two weeks after he reclaimed the No. 1 spot in the standings in a single-month swoop. The feat was initiated at the Southern States Classic in early August, where Childers won second in the #10.5 for 9 points. He then went to battle at the mid-month Meridian Super Qualifier where, in the #11.5, he won the first and second holes for 19 points total, followed by winning first and fourth in the #10.5 for 10 and 7 points, respectively. Childers’ coup de grace took place at the Alabama Championship, where he won the #13.5 for another 10 points for a grand total of 55 points earned at three ropings in just as many weekends. Quite a finish for year 14.
Within striking distance of Childer’s 55 is Resistol Jr. newcomer Brant Cookston of Trinidad, Texas, with 46 points earned across two ropings. First, Cookston, 15, heeled at the Cowboy Capital Classic in May to take third place in the #13.5 for 8 points before turning it up to first place for 10 points in the #11.5. When he went to the Guthrie Championships in July, he hit his stride again in the #11.5 and won the first two holes for a total of 19 points before closing the deal in the #9.5 with a second-place finish and a final 9 points. TRJ
Current USTRC or Key Card/Key Card Max membership is required to participate in the Resistol Junior Champion Program. Earned points begin counting at time of membership purchase thru the NFTR’s last shootout event. The season begins the Monday after the last USTRC Cinch NFTR event and ends the last day of the next USTRC Cinch NFTR event.
Ropers must enter at least one Shootout division in the USTRC NFTR to be eligible. The award will be announced at the end of the USTRC Cinch National Finals of Team Roping event.
The points breakdowns are as follows: Starting with At Home Challenge Events, ropers will earn 10 points if they win the Challenge. No other points will be awarded. At Signature Events, points will be awarded to those winning an aggregate check. It starts at First Place with 10 points, Second = 9 points, and so on as far down as the ropings are paid. During the Cinch NFTR, the placing points are simply doubled. First Place will be 20, second = 18, and so on.