The high call team of Kaleb Driggers and Cory Petska roped their five steers in 29.97 seconds to split $18,000 for the win at the 28th annual Sandhills Stock Show Open jackpot.
Additionally, Driggers was 35.10 on five with Junior Nogueira to place sixth for another $3,100.
[Read More: Five-Flat with Cory Petska]
[Read More: Roping Better with Cory Petska]
For nearly three decades, the Odessa Jackpot, produced by Ben Clements' X-Treme Team Roping, has provided the ideal set up to kick off the season. Held in a colosseum that models some of the biggest rodeos of the year, ropers and horses are put to the test. The jackpot showcased big talents and new partnerships on a longer score with older cattle.
“We are second partners so pretty much every major jackpot that’s go twice we rope together,” 2017 World Champ Petska explained about his partnership with the seven-time NFR qualifier Driggers. “To rope with Kaleb Driggers, it’s an honor, he is a great partner and one of the best headers of all time. You know he does his job 98% of the time, so it’s great getting to rope with him because pretty much all I have to do is catch two feet to win money.”
Petska has been entering the Odessa jackpot since he was in his early teens, and the 15-time NFR qualifier has placed several times in the past. But he's never won it.
“That is the great thing about that roping, when you do good at it that gives you some money to start the winter off on. You are comfortable and don’t feel like you are tight because it pays so good,” Petska said. “That roping is special to me because I grew up not too far from Odessa, so I have been entering that roping since I was 14 years old. I have won second, third, and fourth there, but never won. Getting to actually win the roping is a really great feeling.”
Petska rode a quick-footed bay mare he calls Annie to victory that day.
“It’s a mare that we raised and trained,” Petska said. “Her registered name is MP Driftinorphanannie. I ride her at all the major jackpots, anything that is going to pay $2,000 or more she’s my go to. She scores good, is really fast and she is really easy to catch on. She is amazing. She is one of my favorite horses of all time to ride.”
Petska estimates he's won $200,000 on her in the last five years, making her one of the winningest mares—particularly in the jackpot realm—of all time.
1. Kaleb Driggers and Cory Petska, 29.97 seconds on five head, $18,000
2. Dustin Egusquiza and Travis L. Graves, 30.78 seconds on five head, $14,800
3. Brenten Hall and Tyler Worley, 32.10 seconds on five head, $11,600
4. Clay B. Tryan and Jade Corkill, 32.24 seconds on five head, $8,700
5. Luke Brown and Junior Nogueira, 32.24 seconds on five head, $5,500
6. Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira, 35.10 seconds on five head, $3,100
Short Go Fast Time: Laramie Allen and Truman Magnus, 6.58, $1,000