The Consolation is a funny animal in that ropers don’t talk about it much; probably think that it might be bad luck. But although every roper comes to Vegas expecting to win the big money and realizes that it’s not that tough competing against their rotation to get to the short round and get the big shot, however, a large majority will find themselves in a consolation situation.
The Consolation has been a work in progress beginning when we first introduced it decades ago in conjunction with the PDL in Reno. We think we have made some pretty cool changes over the years, but regardless of how many years we have operated it, there are always new ropers to Vegas who have never seen it. Consequently, when they hear those descriptions about Mulligan rounds and At-Large teams, it just confuses the hell out of them. And to be real honest some of our announcers from time to time get tongue tied and confused trying to explain it. Nevertheless, anytime you put up $156,000 in a separate pot for everyone who missed a steer and give him/her another steer (or two), they may be confused, but they aren’t griping.
A change to the Finale XI Consolation was announced earlier in the year and in the qualification packets that go out each week to qualified ropers. Evidenced by the few phone calls we get with questions, we realize that the majority of you don’t read what we write. In fact, probably only about half of you might read this and the other half will be arguing with us at the Finale over what you thought was going to happen in the Consolation.
The change this year will be fairly dramatic. The description of the Consolation and its changes are as follows:
At the end of every rotation you and your partner will progress based on one of three scenarios. 1) You roped well enough to be one of the 44 teams who advance to the four steer short round, 2) You and your partner roped all three steers but missed the cut, 3) You have two steers down and will advance to the Consolation. The teams who miss two or more steers are the only teams who are out of the roping at this point. Item #1 is pretty self explanatory, but item #2 and #3 will combine and rope in the consolation. After the 3rd steer is roped in each rotation, the fastest 20 consolation teams in that rotation, plus any at-large teams who could potentially be consolation teams will rope another steer; this is called the mulligan round. Why mulligan? The slowest time of the three steers is eliminated to isolate the two best times, and essentially these teams get a “do-over.” This one extra steer in the consolation shakes things up a bunch.
But there is a new line added to this explanation and here is what it says: “The fastest Five teams out of the mulligan round IN EACH ROTATION will win the rotation consolation payout.”
This rule eliminates the need for a short go in the Consolation. Just so everyone is clear, the Consolation will be paid by the rotation this year. We think this will simplify the process a bunch and there will be no need to bring ropers back for a short round the next day. It will essentially be paid on the basis of three caught steers and the $156,000 (if five rotations) that has been paid in roughly 15 checks, will now be paid in 25 if there are five rotations. Each rotation will pay out $31,000 in consolation money. It won’t take you mathematical types very long to figure out that first in each rotation will pay as much as the one first place check in the consolation last year. We think this is a change you will really like!