In November, Georgia’s Sarah Toole maintained her spot at the top of the standings with $5,905, and her lead of $2,945 over the rest of the pack, which stayed relatively quiet, with the exception of Boone, Colorado’s Connie Harris and Roswell, New Mexico’s Kelly Torske.
Harris, a 4.5 header, made a 3-spot gain up to No. 5 when she took fast time in the short go of the #11.5 at the USTRC’s Panhandle Classic, produced by Mc3 Team Ropings. The $500 earnings, won with Mike Weir in 7.74 seconds, was enough to displace the rest of the field—the spread is a mere $380 between No. 4 and No. 9 in the standings. The bulk of Harris’ earnings were won in October at the USTRC Southern Colorado Classic, where she earned $1,120 with Trey Adams by roping down four head in 42.06 seconds in the #12.5 for the win.
“I actually drew that parner,” explained Harris, who was running late after a client meeting for her cabinet company. “He ended up being an awesome partner. We were an 11-team, but we ended up winning the #12.5, so that was really fun.”
For Torske, also a #4.5 header, earning her spot in the standings was a sweet surprise since she and her husband, Vigo, typically rope at World Series events, which they help run as members of the Mathews Land & Cattle crew.
“We’re both school teachers, and one of his kiddos came and roped with us and asked if we were going to the Panhandle Classic, and he asked if I wanted to rope with him, so that’s even better,” Torske exclaimed when she learned about her top 10 placement.
Torske headed for her husband in the #10, but earned her $1,455-check with Teagan Burton, the student, in the #9.5, when the pair earned fourth place in the average with 40.2 seconds on four head.
Torske, who teaches high school and college math at the New Mexico Military Institute, backed into the box aboard her dad’s horse, Knehi (pronounced knee-high).
“He’s 19 years old. My good head horse, he came up crippled, so Dad sent me his. That’s what I’ve been roping on for two years. Dad has owned him since he was a 3-year-old. So, we bought him right off of the man that raised him. He’s part of the family.”
Torske is maintaining her longtime goal of winning a World Series Finale event someday. She and Vigo came close when they took fifth place in 2016’s #10 Yeti Finale, for a total windfall of $130,000.
To celebrate, Torske said, “we went straight to the Kerry Kelley booth and each bought a pair of Kerry Kelley spurs. That was the one thing [Vigo] said we were going to do if we won money in Vegas. That was pretty exciting.”
USTRC Cinch Ladies Standings —Top 10 (as of 12.7.20)
Rank/ Winnings Roper Home Town
1. $5,905 Sarah Toole Rydal, Georgia
2. $2,960 Holly Ricken Boone, Colorado
3. $2,630 Maddie Johnson Montgomery, Alabama
4. $1,760 Kenzie Gordon Florence, Colorado
5. $1,620 Connie L. Harris Boone, Colorado
6. $1,575 Carrie Blanton Montgomery, Alabama
7. $1,470 Melissa L. Terrill Sedan, Kansas
8. $1,455 Kelly Torske Roswell, New Mexico
9. $1,380 Ashley Bentley Quitman, Mississippi
10. $1,110 Becky Schaonist Bloomfield, Nebraska