Tie-Down Summer Run Promises Spice with Shad Mayfield on a Heater, Zack Jongbloed Capitalizing in Window Rock
Shad Mayfield's on an intense winning streak—but look beyond that to see other trends in the tie-down roping community.
Shad Mayfield won the first round of the 2023 Governor's Cup in Sioux Falls with a 7.2.
Shad Mayfield won the first round of the 2023 Governor's Cup in Sioux Falls with a 7.2. | Clay Guardipee photo

The calendar may say three-quarters of the 2024 ProRodeo season is in the rearview mirror, but all hard core fans know that the race to the 2024 NFR and begins now with the tie-down roping summer run.

There are more than two-thirds of the NFR Playoff Series rodeos left to contest—the biggest and richest rodeos of the year—plus enough other rodeos to keep athletes roping for money almost every day, the summer is truly where it’s at for standings watching.

We’ll have it here every week but here’s where things stand as summer kicks off.

Current Top 15 Situation

Shad Mayfield. Period. Mayfield is coming off one of the best winters possible, carrying a lead of $45,000 over second ranked Ty Harris after winning both the Fort Worth and San Antonio Stock Show Rodeos. Though it didn’t count towards PRCA | RAM World Standings, he also banked the $100,000 win at The American in March making this winter eerily similar to his 2020 World Championship campaign.

For those who don’t remember, Mayfield won San Antonio and The American (which did count for standings that year) before COVID decimated the season. With the NFR relocated to Texas, Mayfield claimed his first World title that December.

Despite roping through nagging injuries, Mayfield has been flawless this season and had a big win at Guymon (Okla.) Pioneer Days in May to keep his momentum flowing into the warmer months.

How impressive has Mayfield been thus far in 2024? Well, reigning World Champ Riley Webb broke Mayfield’s regular season earnings record last year but Mayfield is already ahead of Webb’s torrid 2023 pace with more in the bank than Webb had going into the Reno Rodeo at the end of June. And Mayfield has only competed in 25 rodeos.

Top 15 newcomers

How about the rest of the field? With plenty of rodeo to go, there are six guys inside the top 20 who have yet to see the bright lights inside the Thomas & Mack in Las Vegas, home of the NFR: Joel Harris, Chance Thiessen, Tom Crouse, leading Rookie contender Bryce Derrer, and Dylan Hancock. With perennials like World Champion Shane Hanchey, Cory Solomon  and Ryan Jarrett outside looking in at this point in the season, these potential NFR rookies can’t afford to let off the gas this summer if they want to hold their spots all the way to season’s end on September 30.

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First weekend of June recap

The first weekend of summer was a busy one for rodeo contestants with nearly two dozen rodeos on the docket from Canada to California to Florida and all points in between. The Home of the Navajo PRCA Rodeo in Window Rock, Arizona, Old Fort Days in Fort Smith, Arkansas, the Santa Maria (California) Elks Rodeo and the Grand Prairie (Alberta) Stampede were three of the largest.

Zach Jongbloed is currently inside the Top 15, but has some work to do to get more comfortable in the standings.
Zack Jongbloed is currently inside the Top 15, but has some work to do to get more comfortable in the standings. Photo by Jake Hodnett

Zack Jongbloed made a move inside the standings thanks to sharing the win in Window Rock with Cash Hooper. Both men stopped the clock at 7.7 seconds to earn $3,722 each.

“I roped in the Friday morning slack and had a first run [on the calves],” the Iowa, Louisiana cowboy explained. “I didn’t know much about the calves but the key was scoring. I scored good and my horse stayed out of the way, allowed me to make a good, smooth run. It all worked out.”

“Hopefully I’ll get some momentum going now,” Jongbloed, 25, said. He also placed high at Fort Herriman, Utah over the weekend to jump from 21st to 13th in the standings thanks to total earnings of $5,288.

Jongbloed roped at his first Wrangler NFR in 2022, finishing sixth in the World after placing in six rounds and taking third in the average. He just missed a second shot in 2023, landing 17th in the final PRCA World Standings.

“After you make it once, it’s not that you think it’s going to be easy, but it sure makes you want to work harder when you’re sitting home in December.”

The key for this season may be Jongbloed’s mare, Gucci.

“I took her a little last year but she’s going to play a big role this summer for me,” he said of the nine-year old. “We started off on the right foot.”

Jongbloed is a multi-event hand but has decided not to enter in his second event, steer wrestling, this season to focus on the tie down roping.

“It’s hard getting up right with two events and I don’t own a bulldogging horse so you’re not always able to get on a good one,” he noted.

“If you don’t have a good horse, you’re just added money for everyone else.”

Another All Around hand, Wyatt Hansen, shined in his home state rodeo in Santa Maria. Hansen collected $3,801 after splitting the first round and winning the average with 20.1 seconds on two head.

Andrew Burks was the big winner in Fort Smith, winning the first go and grabbing second round money en route to a 17.2 second average win. The Southeastern Circuit Champ earned $4,666 to jump inside the top 50.

2023 Calgary Stampede Champ Beau Cooper also got a proper summer kick-off with a win at the Grand Prairie Stompede. He earned $3,181 for his 8.3 second run. Though Canadian rodeo earnings haven’t been calculated into standings yet, Cooper definitely gave his repeat NFR hopes a boost.

The only change inside the top 12 during the weekend run was a switch at fourth and fifth between John Douch and Marty Yates. Douch collected $4,683 including a win at Parker, Texas.

Meanwhile, Ryan Jarrett jumped inside the top 50 with weekend earnings of $4,978 thanks to checks won in Parker and Durant and Hugo, Oklahoma.

What’s next in the tie-down summer run

The second weekend of June brings two stops on the 2024 Playoff Series: Sisters, Oregon and Woodward, Oklahoma. The Playoff Series is just about one-third into its schedule so there will be plenty of jockeying for position before the late August cut-off for the first stop of the CINCH Playoffs in Puyallup, Washington.

Beyond that are pockets of good circuit runs including four in Texas, the Four Corners area run of Monticello, Utah and Cortez, Colorado and a couple each for the First Frontier and Great Lakes Circuits as things kick off for those competitors.

PRCA World Standings as of June 2, 2024

1Shad MayfieldClovis, New Mexico$135,798.64
2Ty HarrisSan Angelo, Texas$92,898.66
3Riley WebbDenton, Texas$82,921.43
4John DouchHuntsville, Texas$67,418.01
5Marty YatesStephenville, Texas$65,366.12
6Tuf CooperDecatur, Texas$49,112.88
7Joel HarrisSan Angelo, Texas$46,243.80
8Brushton MintonWitter Springs, California$42,809.40
9Haven MegedMiles City, Montana$41,488.92
10Chance ThiessenElk City, Oklahoma$38,816.70
11Tom CrouseGallatin, Missouri$36,465.35
12Bryce Derrer Portales, New Mexico$33650.10
13Zack JongbloedIowa, Louisiana$31,922.11
14Macon MurphyKeatchie, Louisiana$30,573.49
15Westyn HughesCaldwell, Texas$30,420.95
16Hunter HerrinApache, Oklahoma$30,273.47
17Marcos CostaIretama, PR$30,195.15
18Dylan HancockSan Angelo, Texas$29,192.70
19Tyler MilliganPawhuska, OK$28,528.09
20Kincade HenryMount Pleasant, Texas$28,299.37