Luke Brown and Joseph Harrison secured the biggest win of each man’s illustrious career when they won RFD-TV's The American on March 8, 2020, in the AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas.
They laid down a run in the Top 4 shootout round in 4.30 seconds, winning the first-place payout of $100,000 a man, with $50,000 going towards their PRCA Pro Rodeo earnings.
"Winning is fun," Harrison said. "The sport is fun anyway but, winning at places like this and the NFR and places like Cheyenne, that was just one of the most awesome things that's happened to me in my whole life. My wife was super pumped. When you get in the truck and you're both just driving down the road afterwards squealing like little kids, that's the fun stuff. I'm going to ride this right here for so long. I'm going to be annoying."
With the $50,000 going into their PRCA earnings, Brown and Harrison are now leading the PRCA world standings, unofficially.
"It's definitely a weight lifted off our shoulders, but at the same time we have to get both our partners there," said Brown, who is roping with Patrick Smith in PRCA's regular season. "It is just like it didn't happen as far as that's concerned. We have to continue on with the plan and try harder than I've ever tried and expect good things."
Brown and Harrison were the last team out in the Top 4 round because they had the fastest time on two head at 8.33 seconds. They watched Colby Lovell and Jared Fillmore—the only qualifier team to make it back—be 4.61 seconds to put the heat on the final teams.
"We needed to be faster than 4.6," Brown said. "I thought our steer was the strongest one out of all of them, which was good because they took the barrier out of the play. I could just rock and roll and concentrate on not missing. Joseph heeled another one fast. When I faced I felt like we were fast, but I didn't know. I was trying to find some times and I couldn't find the time anywhere. Then I looked at Joseph and then I knew he found it. It was such a relief to know that I turned him all three steers and did what I said I wanted to do and it worked out in my favor."
Brown and Harrison took an early lead after winning the first round with a 4.03-second run, adding $3,000 to their weekend earnings. They then came back on their second steer to be 4.30 seconds, which placed third in the top eight man final after the steer took a step left, which could have hindered their run if Harrison missed the haze since the new arena setup didn't have a left fence for the team ropers.
"Our first steer, Jeff Hilton, who owns them, told me it was probably one of the two better steers in there," Brown said. "I felt like if I got a good start it would be easy to be fast—and I did. Joseph heeled him fast and we finished fast. Our second one, I actually picked him out. I liked the looks of him, but he kind of took a step left and didn't start really good. I had to pull and take another swing, but Joseph heeled that one really fast, so that worked out. I even rode up one time. Pulling at the barrier doesn't bother me. I've done it my whole life. I'm better off to pull than be late. I don't freak out. I would rather pull than just leave there riding. I've always been that way. It never panics me. I know I have to get back to the front before I throw and as long as I have that in my mind to ride forward it seems to come together."
Brown originally had planned to ride his 15-year-old WM Genuine Breeze (Bob), that he purchased from Kaleb Driggers, but when it came to game time, Brown listened to his gut and hopped on his long-score jackpot horse Texas Tallman, known as Cowboy, at the AT&T Stadium.
"I thought he (Bob) would be really good in the winter and for sure The American," Brown said. "He came up a little bit sore the other day and had an abscess, so then I was leaning back toward Cowboy. I went and rode them both the other day and I don't know what it was but something. Joseph and I made some runs and it felt so easy (on Cowboy), just like it did at the Finals.
"When I got here I brought both of them and saddled both of them, but I kept leaning toward him. It's funny because I've had him for a long time and never thought about riding him in a short setup. He's always been a long-score type horse. He will be by far the fastest horse I'll ever own. Before the Finals last year my other one passed away, so I was stuck riding him, but I was kind of wanting to anyway. I was practicing one day and Trevor (Brazile) was there, and he point blank told me, ‘You need to ride that horse.' So, then I was like, 'Okay! He says it, I'll do it.' You listen when he talks. That gave me more confidence and he did so good there. Thank goodness I listened to my gut because it worked out."
Harrison, who is roping with Wyatt Imus in Pro Rodeo's regular season, was on his great heel horse Main Street Boon, a 16-year old by Peptoboonsmal, out of Playboys Ruby, who has been clutch for Harrison in the showing and the rodeo and jackpot setups.
"He's one of those once-in-a-lifetime kinds of horses," Harrison said. "You don't have to be riding or scoring you just have to be roping because he doesn't mess up. He's 16 years old now—that's crazy. That sounds so old. He's kind of a family member. He'll die right there on my place and he'll get to live out the last good while doing whatever he wants to do."
Brown had mentioned before that once Lacy and Libby we're ready to slow down he would slow down as well, bit with this big of a win under their belts they plan to keep entering and staying debt-free.
"We're definitely going to keep going. I probably should have said that when I did because, of course, Lacy wants to go. She loves going as much as I do. We'll just figure out how Libby can go to school when she's at home and she can go with us. The way it is now, it's not even like we're gone that much. Summer, we're gone, and a little in the fall and a little in the spring. We're at home most of the time she's at school so we're out for blood—we're going.
"It will start paying it off (Brown's home). That's what me and Lacy said if I ever won it. That's our goal is to always be debt-free when I'm done—at least have a house paid for and a place paid for. It would make our older age easier. It's probably where it's going unless Libby wants something. She can have whatever she wants first."
1. Luke Brown and Joseph Harrison, 4.03 seconds, $3,000 each
2. Tate Kirchenschlager and Kyle Lockett, 4.18 seconds, $2,250 each
3/4. Manny Egusquiza Jr. and York Gill, 4.38 seconds, $1,000 each
3/4. Clint Sommers and Ross Ashford, 4.38 seconds, $1,000 each
5/6. Colby Lovell and Jared Fillmore, 4.51 seconds
5/6. Clay Smith and Jade Corkill, 4.51 seconds
7. Brenten Hall and Chase Tryan, 4.70 seconds
8. Coleman Proctor and Ryan Motes, 4.71 seconds
Eight Man Final:
1. Clay Smith and Jade Corkill, 3.83 seconds
2. Colby Lovell and Jared Fillmore, 3.86 seconds
3. Luke Brown and Joseph Harrison, 4.30 seconds
4. Tate Kirchenschlager and Kyle Lockett, 4.40 seconds
1. Luke Brown and Joseph Harrison, 8.33 seconds on two head
2. Clay Smith and Jade Corkill, 8.34 seconds on two head
3. Colby Lovell and Jared Fillmore, 8.37 seconds on two head
4. Tate Kirchenschlager and Kyle Lockett, 8.99 seconds on two head
1. Luke Brown and Joseph Harrison, 4.30 seconds, $100,000 each
2. Colby Lovell and Jared Fillmore, 4.61 seconds, $25,000 each
3. Clay Smith and Jade Corkill, 5.98 seconds, $10,000 each
4. Tate Kirchenschlager and Kyle Lockett, NT, $5,000 each