After watching team roping header Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira move into first place in their respective events, Clay Smith and Paul Eaves answered.
The duo stopped the clock in 3.8 seconds, the top time of this year’s Finals.
Eaves pointed to the steer as a big reason for the quick win.
“The steer was really good, one of the better steers we’ve drawn,” Eaves said. “Everything came together.”
Smith is first in team roping heading with $181,473, while Eaves is first in heeling with the same amount. Driggers and Nogueira are first in the average, while Smith and Eaves are fifth.
“It doesn’t really matter,” Smith said. “We’ve got to keep going at them and seeing how much we can win. It’s only halfway (through the Wrangler NFR), so it doesn’t really matter right now.”
Smith and Eaves have teamed together long enough, they know how to read off each other.
“We’ve roped together long enough it’s not like you’ve got to really talk about it,” Eaves said. “It’s about not trying to press too hard but still be able to win something.”
Despite how much money is available, the duo try not to treat the Finals any differently than they would other rodeos.
“The same as we would at a regular rodeo,” Smith said. “We make sure the horses are warmed up and that’s really it, we just focus on what we need to do. There’s no difference between here and when we go to Odessa (Texas). It’s just the same routine.”