Over a weekend of Iowa rodeos in the Great Lakes Circuit, up-and-comers Cole Smith and Reed Boos made their names known splitting the win in Sidney, winning Carson and placing in Moville.
At just 18 and 22 years old, Smith and Boos bested a field of some top names splitting the win in Sidney with Ty Arnold and Kaden Profili. As Missouri and Kansas natives, Sidney isn’t terribly far from their families, meaning they both had a fan club when they got the win.
“It is a cool one for us,” Boos said. “It’s close to my house, and all of his (Smith’s) family was there and my family has been going up there and a bunch of friends, so it was pretty cool.”
And while the excitement of running with the big dogs is almost unexplainable for Smith and Boos, the bump in the Great Lakes Circuit standings is the goal they were looking for.
“It dang sure jumped me,” Smith said. “I think in our circuit last week we won right around $5,000, so it jumped me a couple spots and put me pretty close in. It’s been good; I don’t know how many weeks we’ve been exactly, but we’ve done good every week that we’ve been out. So, it’s been really good to us.”
Smith and Boos brought home $4,890 on the circuit front over weekend and now sit seventh in the standings.
All Over Iowa
Smith and Boos started their circuit trek Tuesday, Aug. 1, at the Wild Bill Hickock Rodeo in Abilene, Kansas, which was co-approved for the Great Lakes Circuit. They then went on to the Woodbury County Fair in Moville, Iowa, Thursday, Aug. 3. They were 5.9 seconds in the slack that evening to split third place and pocket $543 each.
The road then took them to Carson, Iowa, for the Carson Community Rodeo where they got their first win of the weekend. Their 4.9-second run won them both $1,561.
“I thought I was way late,” Smith said. “When I went back, it felt like I really wasn’t as close as I should have been. So, I was late. But we got by him in time, and when I watched the video, it turns out I really wasn’t late at all.”
Friday they were up at the co-approved Watertown Rodeo (South Dakota) before heading to Sidney Saturday. They roped their steer in Sidney in 5.4 seconds to split the win and take home $2,786 each.
“I told Cole, I don’t know what it is about that place (Sidney), but I’ve gotten outran there both times I’ve been,” Boos said. “The steers are always stronger, and for some reason it’s just a weird start. But we finally drew a good one and luckily caught.”
Travelling across the Midwest, they were faced with different starts and setups, and Smith was prepared to make gear changes as necessary to help them be successful.
“I actually was riding a different bit in my gray on the shorter scores like Carson and Watertown and stuff,” Smith said. “I swapped at Sydney and Dodge City to just a little bit bigger, just so he would stay in my hand and not pull through me.”
Young Kids, Good Horses
Though young in age, they know a thing or two about good horses, and they both ride one.
Smith was riding his 12-year-old, gray gelding he calls “Bozo.” Bozo sure doesn’t fit his name, however, as Smith considers him his best mount.
“The gray that I’m riding is my good one,” Smith said. “I got him from a buddy up here in north Missouri about two or three years ago. He was really, really good when I got him but just not a hauled very much. I just started taking him everywhere, and he’s been the best horse I’ve ever had.”
Boos’ 16-year-old buckskin mare, “Dot,” was not always a heel horse. Registered as Mates Cookie N Cream, when she was a 4- or 5-year-old, Boos bought her off a ranch as a head horse, but she made the switch to the heel side under his care.
“I’ve had her for I think 10 or 11 years now, so I’ve grown up riding her a bunch,” Boos said. “She’s not the fastest horse but just easy, and I know what she’s going to every time, so I don’t have to worry about messing around with that.”
As luck would have it
Smith and Boos fit each other’s styles nicely, but roping together in the Great Lakes wasn’t the plan at the start. Last year, Boos was living in Whitesboro, Texas, working for three-time NFR qualifier and respected rope horse trainer Dakota Kirchenschlager.
When he found out he got into the Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo, it came time for him to repurchase his PRCA card. Having claimed the Great Lakes Circuit the two years prior, habit took over and he accidentally reclaimed it, despite planning on remaining at Kirchenschlager’s. But the accident hasn’t fared too bad for Boos, and he’s glad he made that “mistake.”
“I don’t know why I claimed the Great Lakes Circuit but, luckily, I did,” Boos said. “Cole called me and asked if I wanted to come back up here because I’m from up here and I’ve been in the Great Lakes Circuit before, so I said, ‘Heck yeah, that sounds a lot better than working.’”
At just 18, Smith is only a permit holder. Yes, a permit holder hanging with the best of them. When he turned of age to buy his card, it was a no-brainer decision. He’s lived in Stephenville for the last three years but, being a Missouri native, he had to make a decision on what circuit to claim and where he would find the right partner. So, he called on long-time friend—whom he lived with at one point—and NFR header Coy Rahlmann for some advice.
“I called Reed, and really, the main thing that made me come up here was I talked to Coy. I thought about it for a while, and Coy was like, ‘It’s a good way to make money up there and also to learn a lot about everything, so if you’ve got a really good run and you know he’s got good horses, then it’s kind of dumb not to do it.’ That’s when I called Reed, and we got it all figured out.”
Being acquainted with each other for most of their lives through ropings and rodeos in the Midwest and being in the same place in life has made for a good team.
“A big age difference is sometimes hard because they have families, kids or wives, but neither of us have that so it works perfect,” Boos said. “We just kind of do our own things, and we both like doing the same thing. We don’t have a family or anything to have to run back home and take care of, things like that.”
Smith and Boos rope next in Sikeston Thursday, Aug. 10, followed by Marshall, Minnesota, Friday.