Oklahoma's Gary Johnson and Louisiana's Dustin Johnson came from third callback to win the #11.5 Businessman's Roping World Series of Team Roping Qualifier in Hamilton, Texas, worth $35,000 and trophy saddles.
"It was pretty tight," Gary said. "Turtle Powell was high call by a couple seconds, but otherwise it was tight on down to like 11th. I didn't really watch much of the roping coming up to our run. I heard them say we had to be 8-something to take the lead, and I just wanted to go make a run and make sure I got it on him and let Dustin take the time out of the run."
The unrelated Johnson team roped their short-round steer in a lucky 7.77 seconds to win the roping, the first time the team has come tight on a short-round steer in 2019.
"I worked on a ranch in North Texas, and we became good buddies," Dustin explained. "I moved back to Louisiana, and he and I hadn't roped in three or four years. We talked a little bit and decided this year we'd try to make it to Las Vegas. At the first roping we went to in Texarkana, I missed one at second callback. At another roping a couple weeks ago, he waved it off at fourth callback. So this time we finally cleaned up a short-round steer. Third time's a charm!"
Gary and Dustin entered the roping with a game plan of just getting four steers caught in 8 seconds each, but Dustin got a little antsy on the last one when Gary gave him a perfect spin.
"I haven't really roped for thatch money before, but I was more exciting than nervous," Dustin said. "I was planning on safetying up and driving to the inside, but he set up so nice I rode to the end of it and took the first shot I got."
Dustin was on a 7-year-old gelding he calls Little Pete, who he's been riding since the horse was 2.
"A real good friend of mine had bought him as a 2-year-old," Dustin said. "He didn't hardly lope circles. He told me he wants him for his boy, who was probably 2 at the time, and for me to ride him like he's my own until he's ready for him. So I trained him from the ground up. He's got a huge motor but then he can break back down and cow through the corner."
Gary was riding a 12-year-old mare he calls Naughty, who he usually heels on, for the win.
"I got my head horse out and got him injected," Gary said. "I got that horse out just for that roping. But he was strong and probably a little sore. So I got on my heel horse. She's pretty easy going."
Gary is the Oklahoma manager for 3S Services, the oilfield company owned by PRCA header Brandon Webb.
Dustin stays at home with his three girls—Kinley, 8, Maycee, 5, and Pystal, 4—and rides outside horses for a living. The $17,500-a-man payday came at the perfect time for Dustin and wife Tamara and her furniture business, TMJ Distressed Furniture.
"That money allowed us to double her inventory," Dustin said. "It was definitely God's timing. We're very thankful and he's an on-time God!" TRJ