The Texas Panhandle team of Brooke Wilson and Tripp Townsend proved that cowboyin’ for a living can pay when they won the Riata Buckle Handi-Lo #10.5 Futurity, worth $62,000 for roping four steers in 35.76 seconds on two 5-year-olds.
Wilson piloted the unnominated gelding Rusty Peptoboonsmal for the win, while Townsend rode a son of the famous Riata Buckle sire Pepcid—TRR Lucky Hometown—for the win. Along the way, they picked up a $1,500 go-round check to help put them high call in the roping. The duo capitalized on their high-call spot to seal the deal.
“It wouldn’t matter what we were doing, if we were pitching quarters, I’d get nervous,” Townsend, 51, of Earth, Texas, said. “I just tried not to think about it too much. And I just told myself no matter what happened, I wanted to be humble and thankful and give God the glory if I caught or missed. And it was finally my turn today.”
Townsend has helped put the Tongue River Ranch’s great sire Pepcid, a son of Peptoboonsmal, on the map across the performance horse industry, so a win at the Riata Buckle on one of his offspring for Townsend is only fitting.
“So I go to ranch rodeos, have for 20 years,” Townsend, who ranches full time, explained. “And I would see a horse that I just love. And I’d say what say what is he? And they’d say he’s a Pepcid. Tom Moorehouse was the manager at the Tongue River, and I said, ‘Tom, will you sell me a Pepcid? And he said yes. So sure, enough a couple months went by he called me, and I didn’t get to pick him. He said, ‘There he is if you want him.’ That was called Motown, and he is a full brother to the horse I’m riding today. And my son won the youth World’s Greatest riding Motown. And I won the Limited Open at the Snaffle Bit on a full brother to the horse I’m riding today. So I’ve just always had a thing for Pepcids, and after that first one I would go back every year, and the Tongue River Ranch would let me buy one. I didn’t always get first pick, but they would let me, so for the last 10 years every year, I’d get a Pepcid.”
For Tongue River Ranch’s breeding of the horse Townsend won aboard, the ranch will receive $5,181, plus he stallion payout of $10,362 (unofficially) for their nomination of Pepcid.
Brooke Wilson was nothing if not dominant all weekend long in the heading. With at least one callback in most of the weekend’s short rounds, she stood to win twice what she went home with if not for bad luck. She was due, needless to say, for the win in the #10.5 Futurity with Townsend.
“I wanted to come up here so I could tell on Tripp,” Wilson, 35, of Canyon, Texas, laughed.
A buyer and seller of great horses, Wilson and her husband Rodey (who won second in the #12.5 futurity) both spend most of their time riding outside, doctoring wheat pasture cattle to make their horses exceptional. But both Wilson and her husband have had terrible luck when it comes to cowboying with Tripp Townsend.
In March, Wilson cut off the ends of three fingers doctoring Townsend’s cattle.
“It was pretty good to be able to win with Tripp after that,” Wilson said.
And exactly one year before the Riata Buckle. Rodey broke his leg working with Townsend outside.
“Tripp wasn’t even there when it happened,” Wilson admitted. “So I can’t say it was all his fault.”
The Wilsons sold a $200,000 head horse this spring at Rancho Rio, and the Riata Buckle has helped change the game for their role in the horse market.
“Brooke and I do it on our own, with one more guy,” Rodey said. “It’s cool Tripp can bring eight head and I can bring 10, and they all come from 10 miles of each other. We all do the same thing, and it’s cool. The cowboys rise to the top here. Guys who cowboy and do this for a living.”
“I have a full brother to the horse I rode today, and he’s a stallion,” Townsend said. “I’m going to try, some way some how, to get him in. I brought six of them to this event, It’s all I can think about right now. When I see a horse sale catalog, I just thumb through there looking for Riata-Buckle eligible horses.”
Full results coming soon pending audit.