The Most Noteworthy Event in the Cowboy World
Twenty-four years ago we very naively stated that our goal was to promote and market the sport of team roping. It sounded good for a young organization to say something noble like that and if things worked out.... well who knows. As fate would have it the very first USTRC Finals was historic, and had that "smell and feel" that we all understood was the start of something very special. Team roping has come a long way since then, and to say that the 2013 World Series of Team Roping had that same historic impact would be an understatement. Four teams at this event won the largest four checks in the history of team roping. This most certainly is, up to this point, not just the richest, but the most important team roping ever held.
Just for the record, we weren't the only ones who understood its importance. Everyone in Las Vegas was aware that the World Series of Team Roping had economically passed up to the National Finals Rodeo. The NFR paid 6.25 Million, the World Series Finale paid $7.25 Million to become the third richest horse related event in the World. The contentious negotiations over the NFR contract renewal had WSTR on a very low key public relations bend during the 2013 season. While we are extremely proud of this historic event, team roping and rodeo are completely different and keeping the focus on recreation, changed how we presented this historic event. But there is little chance we will ever be able to catch or surpass number 1 and number 2.
The Breeders' Cup is completely out of reach and we have no chance of catching the Dubai World Cup, the Sheiks will just add a few million with the stroke of a pen. And to be honest on the basis of sheer volume of races worldwide and the U.S., overall we can't come close to competing with the horse racing industry. Equestrian performance sports are another matter completely, the team roping industry is most definitely number one and the most important equine recreation sport in the world. The other horse disciplines that use to make the condescending jokes about team ropers, are now the recipients of our condescending grins at their puny payouts and ribbons. Their only defense is to join us and each year more and more do.The entire horse complex is rather small, but the world stage is large. There are some pretty heavy weight horse publications in the world that will not acknowledge our feat. But with the use of the internet, their omission has become fairly obvious and it is only a matter of time until they toss in the towel. Anyway, its all good, and a recreation has reached and all time high.