The Score: Season 3, Episode 6 with Tyler Wade
Tyler Wade joins Chelsea Shaffer for season 3, episode 6 of The Score, brought to you by Patrick Smith's Raising Roosters.

I’ve always known Tyler Wade as a reacher, as the best story teller who’s ever lived, and as a hustler, who worked as hard as anyone I’ve known to stay on the road. I’ve always been impressed by his work ethic and his insane talent, but at the 2019 NFR, I was blown away by his ability to catch 10 steers as insanely fast as he did. He was fun to watch, and I think—in my conversations with so many of the best in the world—he put most of the team roping world on notice that he’s not just the funny guy who tells the best stories and reaches the farthest. He’s one of my close friends, and for years I’ve honored his “NO PODCAST!” request, but for Season 3 of the Score, he’s lost his hall pass.

This episode is brought to you by Patrick Smith’s Raising Roosters

Transcribed by Casey Allen

[Soft music]

[Chelsea] This is Season 3 of The Score, The Team Roping Journal’s regular podcast where the team roping world talks. We’ve told the stories of some of the greatest cowboys, horses, and moments in the sport, and we are so far from done. In 2020 we’ll bring you more of what you’ve come to expect, like interviews with the best cowboys and cowgirls we know, and we’ll dive even deeper into subjects you care about. Look for more audio editions of The Team Roping Journal stories you might have missed in print and learn about the great horses shaping the sport and great challenges facing our industry. All this and more in 2020. I’m Chelsea Shaffer.

[Chelsea] I’ve always known Tyler Wade as a reacher, as the best storyteller who’s ever lived, and as a hustler who worked as hard as anyone I’ve known to stay on the road. I’ve always been impressed by Tyler’s work ethic and his insane talent, but at the 2019 NFR I was absolutely blown away by his ability to reach and catch 10 steers as insanely fast as he did, even including that last one where he fumbled his dally. He was fun to watch and I think in my conversations with so many of the best in the world, that he put the team roping on notice that he’s not just the funny guy who tells the best stories and reaches the farthest. He’s one of my close friends, so for years I’ve really honored his “No Podcast!” request, but for Season 3 of The Score, things are different, and he’s lost his hall pass. So about a month ago, I guess gosh, two months ago now, Tyler and I sat down in Denver and I picked his brain. He loosened up and we chatted about everything from his struggle with horses that’s absolutely known across the team roping industry, now finding a great one in the bay horse that he rode at the finals, to his wife Jesse, who’s a super star mom and a super star barrel racer, and just a little bit of everything. He’s partners with Billie Jack, all of the fun stuff about “T Wade’s” team roping career is in this episode. I hope you enjoy it, stick around for the end for sure for some really funny horse trading hustling stories. “T Wade,” is the trading-est sucker you’ve ever met. Stick around and listen to that part of the episode at the end. Thanks, talk to y’all soon.

[Soft music]

[COMMERCIAL] Before we get started on today’s episode, it is brought to you by Patrick Smith’s great horse WSR Hesa DunOfA Lena, aka Rooster. You can check out for more information and I’ll tell you more about it at the commercial break.

[Tyler] I’m losing, why do I always lose?”

[Chelsea] (Laughing) Why do you always lose? This is the long awaited interview with Tyler Wade.

[Tyler] You finally got me.

[Chelsea] Finally got you. Got you cornered. Nowhere else to go. That’s not true. I’ve had you where we could have done it many a times.

[Tyler] You tricked me that one time and called me.

[Chelsea] I did. That was just short though.

[Tyler] Yeah.

[Chelsea] Yeah. (inaudible). I’m glad that you answer at least when I call. I appreciate that.

[Tyler] Yeah, no problem.

[Chelsea] (Laughing) Okay, so, we’ve been talking about doing this for a long time but you didn’t want to do an interview. Do you like doing interviews, or do you just hate it? Do you hate me? Tell me how you feel about interviews.

[Tyler] No, I don’t mind them that much. I don’t really have a good answer for that. That’s why I don’t like interviews.

[Chelsea] (Laughing) That’s not true, but I guess we’ve talked about it before. You are, I don’t know, if anybody’s ever paid attention to you before or watched you, you’re hilarious. Everybody knows you’re hilarious. You also don’t really like to position yourself highly in the industry. You’re not worried about your position in the industry I guess, or marketing yourself.

[Tyler] Yeah, I’m not very good at marketing myself, I don’t guess. I just try to focus on roping and stuff like that. I’m not really big on “Instagramming” right before I team rope or anything like that. You know what I mean, there’s so many highs and lows. If I don’t catch one for a week I don’t really want to post on social media. I mean, people do good about it and it’s good in the end when they do that, but I’m not as good as I could be at it.

[Chelsea] Well I did an episode with Tate Kirchenschlager the other day and he used you as an example of guys that hustle. He said “There’s nobody that hustles like Tyler Wade,”. I want to talk about that, starting with how you grew up. Where did the hustle come from?

[Tyler] My dad’s always traded cows and put on ropings. My mom has always worked. I’ve always liked that lifestyle, but it doesn’t pay that good unless you do a lot of things. The last three out of the last four years I’ve finished 10th or 11th in the world each year and that’s not enough money. It just doesn’t really work or pay enough. I haven’t really hit any huge licks at the jackpots or anything just to take the heat off financially. I’ve made a living roping but honestly all of it has to go together. The roping lessons, the horses, the putting on team ropings, the trading steers, I mean it all goes in together to make it work. I save my old ropes and sell them for $3 a piece. I took my old ropes and loose change and I bought like 15 head of cows with it, and those cows have all had calves. They have like $600 calves on their side. Stuff like that, if you see an opportunity to make some money you better do it.

[Chelsea] So your parents own an arena?

[Tyler] Yeah, they have an indoor arena in Terrell. They put on junior rodeos and jackpots all the time, stuff like that. When I can help put on the ropings with them we do. My wife rides futurity horses and outside horses and stuff. I don’t really like the horse selling that much because I don’t ever want to make anybody mad if it doesn’t work. Not every horse works for every person. We get them every once in a while and I try to help people make them fit and they’re happy with it, but I don’t like to sell horses at all, not for a living.

[Chelsea] Yeah, I understand. That’s a hard way to make a living for sure.

[Tyler] If somebody gives $20,000 for a horse, and in a month they don’t get along with it, or it winds up crippled or something crazy, I don’t really want them to be mad at me, so I don’t try to do that too much.

[Chelsea] We talked about it a little bit during the NFR when you won one of your rounds, but your horse deal has been a huge struggle throughout your career. I mean, you had Fonzi, so that was amazing. I don’t want to say you lucked into Fonzi, because he wasn’t cheap, but Fonzi ended up being a head horse on accident, right?

[Tyler] Right. Yeah, every horse has kind of worked out on accident, or something. You know, when you finish 11th in the world and only clear $50,000 and then people want $75,000 for their horse, it really doesn’t make it even feasible to do it. There’s a lot of people who make it work,and a lot of people that spend big money and can sell horses for big money too, it’s just scary to risk that. When you buy a horse for $40,000, $60,000, or $80,000, it has to work. I can only afford one, so if that one doesn’t work and I can’t make a living at it, we’re at a dead stop. That’s just hard to do, but at the same time that’s what you’ve gotta do to make a living.

[Chelsea] You and Billie Jack decided to stay hooked again this year.

[Tyler] Yeah. I struggled this summer horse wise and stuff like that, until I found that bay. When I struggled to try to find that horse, I kind of let him down a little bit and didn’t do as good as I can do. I feel like when we get horses on track, he’s always on track, and got good horses. Hopefully I’ll do a better job this year.

[Chelsea] Did you guys talk about that, or was it just like he trusted you? It’s not like Billie Jack talks a whole bunch anyway, but did you guys talk about at the end of the year like, “Hey man, are you sure you want to rope with me after the summer that I had?”. How did that go?

[Tyler] Yeah, I told him kind of the same deal. Like “Hey man, no hard feelings, it’s a business. Whatever you come up with. No hard feelings,” but I don’t guess he had any people that maybe he wanted to rope with.

[Chelsea] No better offers?

[Tyler] Well, I’m not saying that. I guess we’ll just kinda stick it out. I think we rope good together and we can do good. I haven’t done the greatest job I can do for him, but I know we can do it, so that’s a plus to know you can, I guess.

[Chelsea] You didn’t win as much money as you wanted to at the finals this year, but the talk of the finals was how you headed.

[Tyler] (Laughing) Yeah.

[Chelsea] (Laughing) How do you feel like you headed, I mean, were you happy with your finals?

[Tyler] I didn’t handle a couple of them as good as I could have. Some of them were really good, some of them weren’t. The last one I missed my dally on, jerked him, and handled him terrible, so it wasn’t 10 perfect steers, but you just take it night by night and not really focus on anything but yourself. Honestly, I headed pretty good, caught them all, but who knows. If we would have won the first five rounds and I’m winning the world, I might have got nervous and not caught any more after that. It worked out being a scenario that played out where we had nothing to lose and just kind of worked out. I mean, I hope I would rope that way if I was still winning the world, but you just never know.

[Chelsea] Yeah.

[Tyler] It’s a humbling sport, and it is freaking brutal. You know, I caught them all at the finals and everybody will pat you on the back, but the other day I was at the WCRA and all I had to do was catch, and I missed. We were high call at the American qualifier at Odessa and I waved it off. I’ve missed a few in the short rounds here lately like that. The only thing that matters to me is the last one. It’s pretty embarrassing, I missed today too so I’m not that excited about (inaudible)

[Chelsea] I know, For everybody that’s listening, I didn’t get to see the roping today. I thought that you were 4.4 but I read the daysheet wrong, it was Spank, so, I’m sorry.

[Tyler] Yeah, Spank did good, he’s having a good time right now.

[Chelsea] (Laughing) And you’re stuck here with me.

[Tyler] Yeah, it’ll be alright.

[Chelsea] Can you talk about your groove at the finals? What did it feel like? Did it just feel so easy?

[Tyler] Being that it was my third time, a little bit. The nerves kind of die off and you kind of know what to expect. That arena is like a “two-swing” arena. You swing twice, throw it in the middle of the arena, and there’s a rhythm there, and if you get out of it you’re kind of off track. So, nothing really changes, I just try to keep things practicing and change some stuff up from how I used to do it and it kind of helped get my groove back. The steers weren’t quite as strong, and their horns weren’t as huge, which makes it easier to head them.

[Chelsea] Who do you look to when you need help with your roping?

[Tyler] A buddy of mine, Earl Martin comes over and we break it down. That’s the only guy I break it down with. He helps me a ton. We will swap bits, headstalls, tie downs. The only thing we don’t swap with is ropes, because I like my ropes pretty good. Besides that, saddles, whatever it takes. We’ll put different saddles on one, I mean, literally anything we think we need to focus on. He’s sharp, he’s got a great eye for a horse and roping, everything like that. He can see what I can’t feel while we’re up there. It’s pretty good to have him help me out.

[Chelsea] Has he been watching you your whole life?

[Tyler] Yup, he’s lived across the street our whole life. I actually just bought a place right beside it, some land, so we’re gonna build over there and I’m gonna rope at his house even more. Yeah, he’s just really good to me in life and does a heck of a job.

[Chelsea] We were talking about money a little bit ago and making it. You brought up that you bought a little piece of land. What is it that you say at the finals, “Three steers for three more years,”?

[Tyler] Well, we’re five steers or five years away is what I told my wife. She wanted to know when we’re gonna get a house and I told her we’re still quite a few steers away from that I guess so, it just depends on how it goes.

[Chelsea] Dang it. Yeah. What’s your favorite jackpot of the year? We’ve got a bunch of the big jackpots coming up.

[Tyler] Well, I don’t know what my favorite one is.

[Chelsea} Are you getting better at jackpotting?

[Tyler] I sometimes say I’m getting better, and then I miss in high call and then I realize maybe I’m getting worse. I don’t know, it’s so humbling it’s hard to say. This sport’s brutal and as soon as you think you’re good and your horses are good and you figure it out, then you go out the next week and all you have to is catch for $5,000, and you miss. That puts some strain on things and stuff. I don’t say I’m better at some things, I guess,sometimes you’re good and sometimes you’re not, I guess. You just got to ride that wave and just stay pretty level headed about it.

[Chelsea] Tell me about partnerships, because they are challenging in professional rodeo. We know Billie Jack is pretty easygoing and pretty laid back. You’ve had some fun ones over the years, right?

[Tyler] Oh yeah, we’ve had some that were more fun than we needed, I think.

[Chelsea] I think so. Kenny was a riot. What is he doing these days?

[Tyler] Kenny is raising kids, junior rodeoing, moving cows, I’m not real sure. He’s hard to get ahold of.

[Chelsea] He is hard to get ahold of.

[Tyler] Who knows what he’s doing. I’m sure he’s having fun, whatever that is.

[Chelsea] And Knight Rider, just as fun as can be?

[Tyler] Yeah. He’s still having fun. I talk to him all the time on the phone and he’s been roping pretty good here lately so hopefully he gets a partner and gets back after it.

[Chelsea] Yeah, for sure. Alright, tell me, your horses. You said a lot of them have been by accident; most of them have been by accident. Bloodlines, any preference whatsoever or do you not even look at the papers?

[Tyler] No, I don’t really care. The papers are just a good indication of their age, I guess you could say, for me. I mean, a lot of people are different. Joseph knows every horse and every stud and every mare and all that, and that’s kind of his deal. Mine’s just odd. Confirmation wise is big. Making sure they’re big enough, stout enough, fast enough, good minded enough, all of it to hold up and all that. A lot of the horses that I’ve found were kind of by accident. Sometimes you’ve got to buy an older horse to get by for a while and lose a little bit of money when you sell him. The way I look at it, if I buy a horse for $10,000 and I ride him for 2 years, and I get $5,000 for him when I’m done, in that time it’s only a couple hundred dollars a month to lease a horse that you have a pretty good chance on a lot. That’s the way I look at it. I can’t afford to buy one for $60,000 and sell him for $20,000 next year either, but that being said, if you can kind of make it feasible and work, it just depends on you know, vet checks and if they last, and if you don’t like him can you sell him for what you paid for him. That kind of deal. So, it’s just tough. You’ve kind of got to be sharp with it. I know that I have tried 86 horses in the last year and 9 months.

[Chelsea] That’s a lot of horses.

[Tyler] That’s a lot of horses. I think I bought 4. I think I sold 3 of them.

[Chelsea] And you’ve bought some, I mean you’ve looked at some pretty expensive horses too.

[Tyler] Yeah. If they cost more than my best one does and don’t feel half as good, it’s probably not feasible to buy that horse. You’ve always gotta try them because you never know when one’s gonna work out and fit you really good.

[Chelsea] Yeah, the prices of horses. People are very proud of their horses these days. You can get it to a World Series guy.

[Tyler] Yeah, I don’t blame them at all for wanting $30,000 for their horse because they can win more at the World Series than we can win. It’s kind of ruined the good scoring head horses and going and finding one for $15,000 and making the NFR on it the next year. It’s pretty hard to come across.

[Chelsea] Yeah. I just did an interview with Sherwood and he said the same thing. You can’t duck off and find one in the back woods that somebody’s been going to some jackpots on because they don’t score anymore, those kinds.

[Tyler] No, nobody even wants to score them. If their horse scores they’re kind of no good for the World Series roping, so it’s kind of just tough to make it work for us, for sure.

[Chelsea] Yeah. So your bay horse that you rode at the NFR that you’re riding now, you had to work on your scoring quite a bit with him to get him right.

[Tyler] Yeah, he was a little bit different. He would score good, but he would get a little bit nervous and he wouldn’t ride forward. He would squat or pull a leg somewhere or turn his head. It was either that, or he ran out. There was no walking or relaxing or any of that. He’s gotten better and that horse wants to do whatever you tell him. He’s so athletic and quick footed he’s kind of hard to ride. He’s not as easy just to rope the steer on like some horses I’ve had, but he is the most athletic and one of the most fun horses I’ve had.

[Chelsea] Was your neighbor, the one that lives across the street from you, who taught you how to score, or the one who you worked on your scoring with?

[Tyler] I don’t know if anybody necessarily did. My dad taught me how to rope. I just wanted it so bad, I don’t know if anybody taught me any certain thing, but I guess we had critiqued it a lot. He was kind of worried about where my left hand was, scoring a little bit better. Then where my swing was, and how I could do that a little bit better, or how my feet are moving to ride. I want to use everybody’s best qualities to try to bring that to myself. I like the way Clay Smith heads and the way he rides his horse. I think Luke Brown throws great head loops. They’re big and open and it always seems to catch. Driggers’ horses never seem to duck and he rides pretty straight and square in the saddle. I try to critique all the little things that I think they do good to work for me. Dustin Egusquiza starts his swing perfect and flat, and he’s fast. I tried to get my swing a little closer to how he does it too. Don’t tell him that, don’t tell him he did a good job. Ever.

[Chelsea] It’s too late, you just did.

[Tyler] (Laughing) I’m not telling him he did a good job, but I do watch and pay attention.

[Soft music]

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[Chelsea] Is there anybody that you like how they score? I mean, there’s so many different styles.

[Tyler] Honestly, there is so many different styles. Sometimes it doesn’t look very good, but it seems to work and keeps working for guys. I’m not going to say any guys’ names, like it looks terrible and then all of a sudden all of their horses score, and they’re all doing stuff good. I mean, if you’re going to pick one, obviously Trevor Brazile, but that’s perfection and that’s hard to do. Sometimes we can do it practicing, and I can make it perfect practicing and then honestly, when you’re at the rodeo and you nod, you lose about half of what you’ve learned so you just try to build muscle memory and make it work.

[Chelsea] Yeah, for sure.

[Tyler] My horse isn’t gonna score perfect every time because my left hand isn’t gonna be perfect every time, and the steer’s not gonna be perfect. Trevor, he’s amazing at it, and he goes through some horses that do it. I don’t know what he does so different, but he’s good at it.

[Chelsea] Well now Trevor is riding all kinds of horses that are bred to just flat fly, which your wife seems to have decent access to. Do you ever want to get on any of her futurity horses?

[Tyler] No. They’re worth more than they’ll ever be to head on, so I just let her do her deal.

[Chelsea] Yeah. They’re big suckers. She’s so handy, your wife.

[Tyler] Yeah. She rides so quiet and relaxed. It’s funny watching her because I don’t really tell her how to do anything. Sometimes we’ll critique like, maybe riding them a little harder and stuff than she likes to do, but like if she took 5 two-year-olds around the barrels, in three months, every horse will have the same pattern, just the perfect pattern, and their feet in the same spot. It’s pretty impressive to see her do that. Having consistency is hard to find. I’m very inconsistent when it comes to that kind of stuff. I’ll change spots where I rope them and all that, and she does a pretty dang good job of it.

[Chelsea] Do you guys have a plan, for like, this is going to sound like a jerk thing to say. It’s all about you right now.

[Tyler] Right now you’re so broke, but…

[Chelsea] No, no, no.God, no.You can live in my basement or something. (Laughing) Do you guys have a plan for Jesse running barrels, rodeoing. She’s always got a futurity horse or two, but what’s the plan?

[Tyler] Yeah, I think it kind of goes the same way as with team roping horses. If two horses go down, we can’t afford just to go buy two more. We have to take a break and figure some stuff out, do whatever we need to do. I think it’s the same thing in the barrel racing. They’re worth so much money and people are willing to spend so much money on them, if she trains one and if we have one go our way that she can maybe win on I’d love to see her out here. It’s hard to find that special horse like a lot of these girls have out here to make it work. Yeah, when the horse comes or you know, we’re financially stable we’re going to hopefully both get after it. Hopefully, sponsor wise, or whatever comes our way for us to make it work for us to go together all the time.

[Chelsea] Jesse’s being an amazing mother right now.

[Tyler] Yeah, she pays the bills and I just do whatever the heck I’m doing

[Chelsea] How hard is it to be away from them? Now you’re getting older, kind of seeing what the old guys used to say about hating traveling.

[Tyler] Oh, I’m over it. Haven’t seen them in a day and a half. When we’re up tonight at 8:00, I’m going to be home at 9:00 in the morning. We’re just going to go ahead and drive the whole way home. No, it sucks. I don’t like it at all. It’s hard to afford just being able to go both together. It’s more stalls, more shavings, more food, more diesel, it’s everything. The wear and tear on your rig because you take it the whole time, it’s hard to do. It’s worth it in the end if you can afford to do it. It’s fun to have them out there too. Except when my little boy, we’ll get somewhere at 1:00 in the morning and he’ll say “We’re just gonna play for a little while,”.

[Chelsea] Yeah, that’s the worst.

[Tyler] We’re on his time, then. So that’s pretty hard to make work.

[Chelsea] Alright, I have to ask you, I don’t know if you can tell me the truth or not. What’s the craziest thing you’ve ever traded?

[Tyler] Oh, man.

[Chelsea] And how much did you make off of it?

[Tyler} I don’t even know where to start. The craziest thing I ever traded. I traded two horses that weren’t broke and two steers and a Zebu for a grey pony and a 30 year old, roan, head horse. I was so sick of the Zebu and the horses. We had to load the horses like bucking horses to get them in the chute.

[Chelsea] Yeah, that’s how you do it. (Laughing)

[Tyler} I traded all of that for two ponies, and I roped on them at the house that night. I said “I wanna sell this stuff, and I wanna sell it today,”. A guy said “Well how much do you want for it?”. I said, “I don’t know, $2,000,”. He’s like, “I’ll give you $1,800.” I said “Deal! No questions asked, deal. That’ll work for me,” but I don’t know what the craziest one I ever traded.

[Chelsea] Wait. You just like, casually dropped a Zebu. Where did you come upon one?

[Tyler] Um, on Craigslist. This lady had a Zebu for like $120. It was like right down the road. So in the whole horse deal, I guess the two horses cost like $75 a piece and then $120 for the Zebu, and then I sold it all for $1800 in like, maybe 8 hours total. I don’t know how I wind up doing all that. We’ve done some crazy stuff like that before, I don’t know. We’ve traded a lot of stuff. I traded 8 trophy saddles, a couple steers, and a goat for a trailer one time. Then I traded the trailer for a head horse I sold for $12,500, so that was pretty good. Pretty interesting. I had a lot of time in it though, that’s for sure. Stuff like that, I don’t know, it just seems to come your way. I try not to peel with anything that cheap anymore.

[Chelsea] Are you bored?

[Tyler] Yeah, I don’t want to get the bottom of the barrel (inaudible). When I was 15 or 16 we used to go to the horse sales all the time. So to make money I would ride anything and everything for $25. Which at the time, well heck, I would ride 10 a day, make $250 or so, plus selling a couple, this’ll be alright. I’ll make it work. Well, me and a buddy of mine were riding barn horses then. This old man came in the sale and said “I need you boys to ride these two horses for me,”. There was an old, probably 30 year-old paint horse that was crippled as heck, and there was a little black that looked outstanding. He was so shiny and pretty. He said “T Wade, what horse do you wanna ride?”. I said, “I want that old paint. That’s the one I wanna ride. I don’t want that, there’s something wrong with that black one,”. I’m telling you, I got on the old paint and he could barely walk. I was gonna walk him in the ring, and he got on that black horse. This black horse bucked so hard that he bucked him like 10 feet in the air. When he landed on his hand he split his right hand in half, two fingers on each side, about 3 inches in.

[Chelsea] Oh my God!

[Tyler} And when he hit the side of the fence, and just dang near knocked him out, and they never stopped the sale, they didn’t even care. They just kept rolling. I was like, “This man is concussed! We need to call somebody!”.

[Chelsea] (Laughing)

I’m telling you, from that day on, I hadn’t been to the sale, and I ain’t gonna ride one in there. You could literally ruin your whole roping career for $25. So that was the last time I’ve been. I used to get off anything bareback, if it looked like it had been rode I’d jump on it.

[Chelsea] Do some little rope tricks, make it look cool?

[Tyler] Yeah. Now, I’m no test dummy anymore. I’m not doing that.

[Chelsea] I think you got on a broodmare in my barn on the concrete once.

[Tyler] Yeah.

[Chelsea] That I had just pulled off the trailer from buying out of the mountains.

[Tyler] Well for you I’d test them out. I can’t just be doing that for $25.

[Chelsea] Not for $25.

[Tyler] Yeah, exactly.

[Chelsea] Awesome, well that is where I will let you end, because I did want you to tell at least one story before this podcast was over.

[Tyler] Alright.

[Chelsea] Do you feel like you did a good job? Do you want to end now, or do you want me to be more creative?

[Tyler] No, I don’t care. What else do you got?

[Chelsea] I mean, I would love for you to tell me stories about rodeoing with Kenny, rodeoing with Tyler, but…

[Tyler] Oh, I’ll tell you one story. The first pro rodeo I went to was Lafayette, Louisiana, which is a terrible rodeo for as far as it is for us. It paid like $700 to win each round and it was like 8 hours down there or something, but we were gonna fill my permit, me and Dustin Davis, so we were gonna go. We were roping and left too late, I don’t remember what time it was. We were probably gonna get there like 30 minutes after it started if we left now. So we drove 80 the whole way down there and we’re tired and kind of over it. I hadn’t had a drivers license that long, so I wasn’t driving very fast. I was nervous driving 80 I guess. We get like 10 minutes from the arena and we hadn’t ate yet, so we’re like, “Man. I think we got time for Wendy’s!”.

[Chelsea] (Laughing)

[Tyler] It was like 2 miles from the arena, so we’re like, “Yeah, yeah, that’ll work!”. We go get Wendy’s, get back on the road, and we pull in the arena and we’re eating. I see the team ropers walking in the alleyway, and I’ve never been there, but I see them walking in and I’m like, “Oh man, we are second out! We have got to hurry!”. When we got in the alley, the first team roped and we ran down there, and Jay Norman said, “You can borrow my horse,”. I got on his horse, and I’m so nervous, there’s people everywhere. I’ve never really roped under those conditions, I guess. I ran through the barrier, didn’t hit the steer, and it was all a blur. I was so sick when I left, I didn’t even eat my Wendy’s after we went all the way down there.

[Chelsea] (Laughing)

[Tyler] I was like, “That is the dumbest thing we have EVER done,”. I kind of refrain from doing that rookie stuff anymore.

[Chelsea] Anymore.I think anybody who has been rodeoing for as long as you have has been turned out for one reason or another. Have you ever been actually turned out for a super stupid reason?

[Tyler] Yeah, I’m not telling you that. But yes, our rookie year, we literally did not know anything.

[Chelsea] You and Dustin were rookies together?

[Tyler] No, he knew. Like my rookie year, I didn’t know anything at all, I was kind of by myself. Me and Dakota Kirchenschlager was gonna rope at a few rodeos around the house, well he decides he can’t make it. I’m like, alright, no big deal, and I didn’t enter or nothing. I had no clue. Well, this was my rookie year and I missed the finals by like $4,000.

[Chelsea] You were rookie of the year, right?

[Tyler] Yeah. So I missed the finals by $4,000 and I remember we were in Jacksonville, Texas. I counted it, and it only paid like $1,100 and I still counted it, because I didn’t know if I was going to be rodeoing or what. I remember Dakota said he couldn’t make it, so I said “Hey, don’t worry about it, I’ll just see you at the jackpot tomorrow,”. He said, “Okay,”. Well I’m there with Dustin and Kenny because they’re roping, and I’m sitting in the head box watching them rope in my t-shirt, and they called my name out and turned my steer out. Well Dakota had turned himself out, but they still drew me a steer, and that still counted as one of the rodeos I went to. That happened at like 6 rodeos, I think, that all were within 1 or 2 weekends. I didn’t have a clue, I didn’t know. There’s a little more to it. I needed a little more guidance than I had, but after that Dustin and Kenny kind of took the reins and were like “Alright, stupid,”.

[Chelsea] The responsible parties (Laughing)

[Tyler] (Laughing) Yeah, like, “Alright stupid, we’re gonna have to do better than that,” but we’ve done some dumb stuff like that. Now, we’re gonna take care of business and rarely have any problems I guess.

[Chelsea] Okay, the worst you’ve ever missed one. Obviously, that one in Lafayette, Louisiana doesn’t sound like it was a great time, but was there one where you blew your spoke, obviously everybody has done that, right?

[Tyler] Oh yeah, I’ve done a lot of stupid stuff. Honestly, a lot of people like, if they’re so far away they won’t throw, and I’m gonna throw regardless. There’s been times where they’re like, “Well wow. How did he catch him?” and there’s been a lot of times they’ve said “Wow. Why did he do that?”. At the same time, if it’s a one header, I’m gonna throw somewhere around making it work or not. Dakota Kirchenschlager little girl calls me “Gator,”. We were at a rodeo one time, I came out, and the wind was blowing, and I tried to reach and I missed. She walked over to me and she said, “Gator, you didn’t even hit that one!”. I know, I didn’t. She was pretty fun to be with too. We went to Cody, Wyoming, and Dakota missed that one for me, and she said “Dad missed, he’s gonna be really upset. Me and mom are gonna ride in the trailer,”. (Laughing)

[Chelsea] (Laughing) Tory cut his fingers off and Elise to this day, she’ll say “Daddy was just trying to go too fast. Daddy shouldn’t try to win!”.

[Tyler] (Laughing) Daddy needs to slow down and think for a second.

[Chelsea] “Daddy shouldn’t try to win,”. So you’re very close to that point of your parenting career, where he’s going to start to have opinions about your roping.

[Tyler] Oh,yeah. He’s getting to where he’s talking a little bit, so it’ll be a matter of time if I’m doing something wrong, I’m sure.

[Chelsea} Does he like to sit on his pony?

[Tyler] Yeah, he likes his pony. He loves the goats. He’s got a pet goat, and a couple others he likes to chase. He’s got a rabbit, we’ve got it all for him anyways. I had a roping and I was dragging him around in his rocking chair the other day, or rocking horse, and I was dragging him around in a big circle and he fell off. I thought he was gonna start crying, and he laughed and got back on him. I have never been so proud in my life. He actually wanted to get back on him when he got bucked off.

[Chelsea] I feel like that stage ended for me though. She used to laugh when she fell, now she just gets mad.

[Tyler] Now it’s a big deal.

[Chelsea] Now she’s just mad and furious and hits Tonto. (Laughing) Oh man. Alright, well, before we get to talking about me I will let you go. So thank you.

[Tyler] Thanks for having me.

[Chelsea] Thanks.

[Soft music]

[COMMERCIAL] Before we go, we have got to remind you that this episode was sponsored by Patrick Smith and WSR Hesa DunOfA Lena, known as “Rooster”. “Rooster” is standing in 2020 for $1,800, that’s a smoking deal when you’re talking about creating some of the greatest rope horses in the sport. So check him out at and call 432-201-3080 for your contracts.

[Soft music] 

More with Tyler Wade:

Short-Strided vs. Long-Strided Head Horses with Tyler Wade

The Short Score NFR BONUS: Round 1 Winners Wade and Davison

The Short Score NFR BONUS: Round 3 Winners Wade and Davison

Mid-Roping Horsemanship Fix with Tyler Wade

Five Flat with Tyler Wade

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