Clint Summers ended the 2017 ProRodeo season in the top 20 of the World Standings after roping with different partners like Tyler Wade and Trevor Brazile. This year he started out roping with nine-time WNFR qualifier Charly Crawford, but Summers will begin to rope with reigning World Champion, Erich Rogers come Guymon, Okla. Summers has also been on the hunt for more horses to match his world-caliber heading talent.
Kaitlin Gustave: You and Erich Rogers are going to start roping together–tell me how that came about.
Clint Summers: I’m pretty excited. I hate splitting partners up—that’s the worst thing in the world. Things just weren’t working for me and Charly (Crawford). We’ve been going to a bunch of rodeos and going to jackpots every week, and it just didn't seem like we could get things together. I feel like it’s still early in the year and figured if I was going to do something I might as well and try something different now while I could. When I had an opportunity to rope with Erich, I felt like it might be a good deal.
KG: Erich recently had an injury at the Cinch Timed Event Championships. When will he be able to start roping again?
CS: He told me when we left the Timed Event that he should be ready by Guymon (Okla.), so fingers crossed that he’s back roping by then.
KG: Who will you rope with in the mean time?
CS: I’m roping with Colby Lovell this week at a couple rodeos down here in Texas. I don’t really know for sure yet but I might rope with Lovell at a few in California and Logandale (Nev.). Then I go down to the Circuit Finals down in Kissimmee (Fla.), I’ll rope with Marcus Theriot down there. It’s kind of scattered out until Erich can get back.
KG: Talk about partner-finding process
CS: Last year Erich and I decided to be second partners at jackpots. We’ve always roped decent together. Erich and Cory had split and I didn’t know what his plans were, if he even had a plan in mind whenever they split. I figured with him winning the World he had something in mind already. We were around each other and he kind of kept hinting around that he didn't have a partner and my deal wasn't going good, so I just figured what the heck. I figured it would be a pretty good opportunity so we talked some more and decided it might be a good idea to try it out. He ropes really good and gives me a lot of chances to win. He doesn't miss very many so I’ll get to turn in on a lot of steers and have a lot of chances, I think.
KG: What horses do you have going right now?
CS: I have Smurf right now. I’ve been kind of looking but he doesn’t seem to be off or have any problems at all so I just hope he can hold in there until I can find him another one. I’m trying not to rush anything on a wrong one.
KG: Why are you looking for in a horse?
CS: I just want one that is easy and will do the same thing pretty much every time. He doesn't need to have anything special to him. I just want him to be able to run and be easy to rope on and give me the same chance every time. If they do that, it means a lot to me.
KG: Why do you need another horse?
CS: I just figured I need to get Smurf something else to help him where maybe he’ll last more years for me than he will just by himself. I figured if I have to ride him by himself for the next couple years it’d be pretty rough on him. If I can get something to help him out then he’ll probably last me several more years. But knock on wood, he hasn't had any problems and doesn't seem to, but it would make me feel better if I can get something to help him out.
KG: What do you think it takes for a horse to last on the road?
CS: They have to be tough for sure and have to have a good mind to them. I feel like a pretty good horse can take care of himself as far as hurting them while roping on them or something, they normally take care of themselves unless it's a freak deal. You definitely have to keep them fed good and take care of them just like a human.
KG: Is there anything you do to keep Smurf sound on the road?
CS: I put shipping boots and Soft Rides on and wrap his legs. I try to keep plenty of alfalfa in front of him while we’re traveling and just keep him fat and healthy.