These 7 Calf Roping Circuit Races are Nail Biters
We're in the home stretch of the regular season and ropers and chasing dollars.
Kalai Nobriga ropes in Albuquerque New Mexico
Kalai Nobriga leveraged the New Mexico State Fair and Rodeo for Turquoise Circuit gain. Photo by Avid Visuals Imagery Rodeo Photography.

Big mid-September rodeo purses in places like Pendleton and Abilene presented opportunities for more than those cowboys chasing a berth to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (NFR)—they also helped breathe life into circuit finals aspirations for ProRodeo competitors across the country.

While the contenders are already decided in almost half the circuits, in the other half, ropers are still chasing dollars in the final weeks of the regular season, hoping to give themselves a leg up for circuit championships or to sneak into the circuit finals rodeos.

READ MORE: The Finals Field is Set for These 6 Circuits

Coming in Hot in the Texas Circuit

Cole Clemons continued his solid position atop the leaderboard in the Texas Circuit as the circuit winds to its September 25 conclusion with a flurry of rodeos from Amarillo to Stephenville, with stops at co-approved offerings from Louisiana to New Mexico.

With full-time guys making their way back home to Texas from the summer run, the bottom end of the standings began to shuffle in mid-September. World leader Riley Webb and World Champ Marcos Costa picked up big checks in Abilene to climb their way into contention for a spot in Waco, home of the Texas Circuit Finals Rodeo on October 10–13.

Costa leaped from 18th to seventh while Webb climbed from 16th to 10th. Clay McCuistion also fared well, moving from 13th to ninth.

John Douch is now on the bubble at 12th in the circuit standings, a gap of just $448 separating him from Robert Mathis and a few more dollars back to Weldon Watson and Monty Lewis as this one goes down to the wire.

Texas Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Cole ClemonsLipan, Texas$29,199.43
2Sterling SmithStephenville, Texas$19,552.43
3Charlie GibsonMidland, Texas$17,467.73
4Shad MayfieldClovis, New Mexico$15,416.98
5Cody WaldropSan Angelo, Texas$14,156.09
6Blane CoxCameron, Texas$13,974.97
7Marcos CostaIretama, Brazil$13,023.73
8Chisum AllenMenard, Texas$12,872.88
9Clay McCuistionSanger, Texas$11,711.38
10Riley WebbDenton, Texas$11,448.02
11Cory SolomonPrairie View, Texas$11,249.28
12John DouchHuntsville, Texas$11,033.57
13Robert MathisMart, Texas$10,585.82
14Weldon WatsonHuntsville, Texas$10,570.91
15Monty LewisHereford, Texas$10,186.45
16Tyson DurfeyBrock, Texas$9,726.80
17Semaj CollinsCleveland, Texas$9,282.53
18Gio PilotoTolar, Texas$9,115.11
19Karson KolacekWest, Texas$8,292.66
20Chris McCuistionCollinsville, Texas$8,036.32

Chasing California Circuit’s Jordan Ketscher

The California Circuit had two rodeos on tap in mid-September and multi-event hand Doyle Hoskins was the big money winner. He won both Laton and Marysville, pocketing $1,730 to inch up the standings.

The field continues to chase Jordan Ketscher who has won more than $18,600 so far this year.

There are four rodeos left before the end of the season and plenty of contenders to move into the top 12 ahead of the California Circuit Finals, held on New Year’s weekend in Red Bluff. KC Miller is in the hot seat at 12th, just under $200 ahead of Jade Church.

California Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Jordan KetscherSquaw Valley, California$18,690.79
2Jason AndersenSalinas, California$13,218.10
3Colton FarquerOakdale, California$11,164.54
4Brush MintonWitter Springs, California$11,160.27
5Tyler ForsbergFillmore, California$10,941.04
6Cody StewartJanesville, California$10,338.87
7Doyle HoskinsPrunedale, California$9,326.79
8J Cody JonesUkiah, California9036.15
9Nathan SteinbergConroe, Texas$4,914.07
10Dan WilliamsStandish, California$4,482.31
11CJ DeForestWheatland, California$4,191.33
12KC MillerCambria, California$3,859.47
13Jade ChurchStrathmore, California$3,673.21
14DJ ParkerSan Luis Obispo, California$3,230.05
15Chant DeForestWheatland, California$2,834.95
16Cole DoddsSonger, California$2,499.73
17Todd ForsbergFillmore, California$2,468.51
18Zachary RhodesReno, Nevada$2,412.16
19Colt RichardsYoakum, Texas$2,086.33
20Neil DoveHico, Texas$2,042.22

Still Hunting Top Spots in the Southeastern Circuit

With a few rodeos on the schedule again, there were some changes to the Southeastern Circuit standings. Macon Murphy won a little to move to second, closing in on long-time leader Blake Chauvin.

There is just a tick over $2,000 from Chauvin to eighth-ranked Booker McCutchen, making this a race to watch during the Southeastern Circuit Finals Rodeo in Davie, Florida, November 10–13.

Not surprisingly, the bubble is interesting, too, with a bunch of contestants still in the hunt for a spot amongst the top 12 as the circuit closes out with a few rodeos from Louisiana to Florida.

Southeastern Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Blake ChauvinRaceland, Louisiana$13,478.76
2Macon MurphyKeatchie, Louisiana$12,773.71
3Michael OteroCollinsville,Texas$12,452.18
4Polo BacqueScott, Louisiana$12,020.43
5West SmithEmmet, Arkansas$11,895.57
6Cole WalkerSparta, Tennessee$11,505.72
7Austin DavisMorton, Mississippi$11,505.41
8Booker McCutchenHarrison, Arkansas$11,354.46
9Marcus TheriotLumberton, Mississippi$10,778.03
10Roan HudsonArcadia, Florida$10,147.96
11Randall CarlisleAthens, Louisiana$10,110.30
12Tatum MillerMalvern, Arkansas$9,860.16
13Bart BrunsonTerry, Mississippi$9,031.86
14Justin ThigpenWaycross, Georgia$8,706.65
15Artrell CarmoucheAthens, Louisiana$8,429.51
16Blayne SaineDetroit, Alabama$8,175.57
17Riley IstreVinton, Louisiana$7,911.77
18Andrew BurksKiln, Mississippi$7,531.06
19Tim PharrResaca, Georgia$7,481.63
20Bryan McClellanWhigham, Georgia$7,098.21

Trent Turner Jumps Three Spots in First Frontier Circuit

Trent Turner had the most profitable month in the First Frontier Circuit. Turner jumped from sixth to third thanks to a pair of wins at the Painted Pony Series in New York and good checks in Levant, Maine.

Reigning champ Zane Kilgus holds a commanding lead as the season winds down, and a handful of guys are battling for the last spots in the top 12.

The First Frontier Circuit Finals happens in conjunction with the Pennsylvania Farm Show on January 11–13 in Harrisburg.

First Frontier Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Zane KilgusWatsontown, Pennslyvania$9,378.24
2Tyler ZebroviousFredonia, Pennslyvania$5,903.59
3Trent TurnerTeague, Texas$4,935.10
4JR MyersFelton, Pennslyvania$4,858.93
5Colby ClementHudson Falls, New York$4,334.84
6Ty RumfordAbbyville, Kansas$3,909.91
7Scot BrownMount Joy, Pennslyvania$3,407.51
8JC FisherMilton, Pennslyvania$3,217.83
9Layne WeberReinholds, Pennslyvania$3,205.00
10Garrett FernandezGloversville, New York$2,906.55
11Lane HowerMilton, Pennslyvania$2,641.00
12Drew CarnesHornell, New York$2,348.12
13Robbie ErckFt. Edward, New York$2,197.32
14Ned KilgusWatsontown, Pennslyvania$1,884.18
15Charlie GoerlachGreenfield Center, New York$967.80
16Brady BrennanAshburnham, Massachusetts$932.48
17Tim CarnesHornell, New York$723.80
18Hayden WalizerMill Hall, Pennslyvania$686.30
19Joey BoccanfusoMillstone, New Jersey$620.40
20Clayton SikesGraham, Texas$430.88

Shane Hanchey Dominates Wilderness Circuit with $20,000 Lead

The Wilderness Circuit is all but wrapped up with just one rodeo (Mona, Utah, September 29–30) left on the docket for the 2023 regular season.

Shane Hanchey pretty much has closed the door on the field with more than $51,000 won this summer alone. His closest competition is Zack Jongbloed, nearly $20,000 back.

While Hanchey is locked in at the top, there’s still a race on to see who will compete at the Wilderness Circuit Finals Rodeo in Heber City, Utah, come November 3–4. Eleventh-ranked Colton Kofoed helped his cause with a good check in St. George on September 16, putting some distance between himself and 12th-ranked Stetson Vest.

Just a smidge over $900 separates Vest from 15th-ranked Brayden Roe, with 16th-ranked Waid Dalton just another $200 behind Roe, leaving five guys in contention for the final spot.

For reference, Mona paid $2,594 to the winner a year ago.

Wilderness Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Shane HancheySulphur, Louisiana$51,790.82
2Zack JonglboedIowa, Louisiana$32,479.39
3Matt ShiozawaChubbuck, Idaho$29,865.48
4Chance ThiessenElk City, Oklahoma$22,213.97
5Ryan ThibodeauxStephenville, Texas$17,864.05
6Ladd KingWest Weber, Utah$15,250.14
7Justin BrinkerhoffCorinne, Utah$15,240.70
8Cole EigurenFruitland, Idaho$13,569.39
9Clint RobinsonSpanish Fork, Utah$12,728.96
10Britt BedkeOakley, Idaho$12,224.30
11Colton KofoedBear River, Wyoming$12,224.30
12Stetson VestChildress, Texas$9,835.38
13Josh JenningsGlendale, Utah$9,603.97
14Spencer MoultonBlackfoot, Idaho$9,342.18
15Brayden RoeWendell, Idaho$8,920.55
16Waid DaltonRichfield, Idaho$8,706.96
17Drake WycherleyHooper, Utah$6,509.21
18Jake HannumPlain City, Utah$6,344.84
19Justin ParkeGooding, Idaho$6,116.94
20Spencer KingPlain City, Utah$6,111.54

Last Chance in the Great Lakes Circuit

Like the Wilderness, the Great Lakes Circuit is down to one more rodeo, one last chance to qualify for the Great Lakes Circuit Finals Rodeo to be held in Louisville, Kentucky, on November 9–11.

Cody Huber and Chance Oftedahl traded the lead throughout the season but Huber pulled away during the final month with wins in Ashland, Glenwood City and Dayton to close with a lead of $7,000. Huber has three circuit titles already.

On the bubble are Dawson Turner (11th), Haze Wright (12th), Steve Kuntz (13th) and Hadley DeShazo (14th) who are only $900 apart. The final rodeo will happen September 22–23 in Madison, Indiana.

Great Lakes Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Cody HuberAlbia, Iowa$23,848.62
2Chance OftedahlPemberton, Minnesota$16,830.41
3Jesse HinkleHigbee, Missouri$16,708.63
4Dallen McIntireThayer, Iowa$16,011.02
5Blake AshAurora, Missouri$13,322.78
6Fenton NelsenMarshall, Missouri$12,864.11
7Luke MadsenMarshalltown, Iowa$12,792.04
8Jody GreenAda, Oklahoma$12,758.71
9Clay EllisDows, Iowa$12,139.26
10Roy LeeMarshall, Missouri$11,841.83
11Dawson TurnerSidney, Arkansas$8,566.27
12Haze WrightOzark, Missouri$8,371.94
13Steve KuntzNorth Branch, Minnesota$7,901.29
14Hadley DeShazoAsh Flat, Arkansas$7,618.79
15Judd GroverCresco, Iowa$6,772.72
16Tanner ScheevelLester Prairie, Minnesota$6,123.69
17Austin MadisonOnawa, Iowa$5,971.42
18Chance LockenReedsburg, Wisconsin$5,905.99
19Kadin BoardmanJackson, Missouri$5,762.16
20Jaxson DavisBloomfield, Iowa$5,012.92

Aloha State’s Kalai Nobriga Tops Turquoise Circuit Leaderboard

In the Turquoise Circuit, one of the circuit’s most lucrative rodeos, the New Mexico State Fair & Rodeo in Albuquerque, finished up and Hawaiian transplant Kalai Nobriga was the lone circuit competitor to make it into the money. In fact, he won enough to take the lead from Hayden Ford by about $800.

With two weekends and seven rodeos left, Tristan Mahoney is holding down the 12th position in the standings, clinging to a lead of $44 over Colten Wallis.

The Turquoise Circuit Finals is held in Camp Verde, Arizona, on November 3–4.

Turquoise Circuit Standings as of September 18, 2023

RankAthleteHometownMoney Won
1Kalai NobrigaKealakekua, Hawaii$11,158.83
2Hayden FordWhitehouse, Texas$10,339.60
3Joseph ParsonsMarana, Arizona$9,731.06
4Seth HallAlbuquerque, New Mexico$8,418.55
5Colter SellersCasa Grande, Arizona$6,778.04
6Richard NewtonPortales, New Mexico$6,083.89
7Cory RowlandHobbs, New Mexico$5,915.45
8Westyn HughesCaldwell, Texas$5,130.12
9Brody StallardFort Sumner, New Mexico$4,026.21
10Kyle DuttonMesilla Park, New Mexico$3,696.07
11Kass NewmanMoses Lake, Washington$3,526.64
12Tristan MahoneyFlorence, Arizona$3,202.21
13Colten WallisBig Spring, Texas$3,158.76
14Hiyo YazzieCoyote Canyon, New Mexico$2,759.81
15Garrett JacobsBosque Farms, New Mexico$2,674.11
16John Pete EtcheverryMesilla Park, New Mexico$2,585.03
17Ty PabloStanding Rock, New Mexico$2,482.90
18Cooper AndersenCasa Grande, Arizona$2,335.16
19Clate HarwellArtesia, New Mexico$2,246.34
20Blake BlombergFallbrook, California$1,944.29

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