By Lincoln Shryack
Forty-two-year-old Texas cowboy Scott Snedecor took home his third career steer roping world championship title on Saturday at the 2017 National Finals Steer Roping (NFSR) in Mulvane, Kansas. Snedecor was propelled to the top spot by winning the average at the Kansas Star Arena, roping nine head in 104.1 seconds over the two-day competition.
The 2005 and 2008 world champion ultimately beat out rodeo legend Trevor Brazile for the gold buckle by just under $10,000. Snedecor collected his third career NFSR average title on Saturday as well, and ended his 2017 season with $136,419.
After entering the weekend fourth place in the standings, Snedecor saved his best roping for last. He was the only cowboy to record a time on all five steers on Friday, and his 9.8-second time was good for the win in round three. When the dust settled on the event by Saturday, just Snedecor and NFSR runner-up JoJo Lemond had roped nine steers.
Snedecor said after Friday’s outs that roping hadn’t been enjoyable for him for some time. Perhaps fatigued by the grueling rodeo season and the pressure that comes with it, the veteran returned home and set his mind and body right before his 16th NFSR.
“It hadn’t been fun for me in a while, at least in the last couple of months it had not been good for me,” Snedecor told ProRodeo.com. “We’ve been working on it at the house and it was back to fun again and it felt like it used to.”
Another aspect of the Fredericksburg, Texas, cowboy’s rejuvenation could also be attributed to riding a horse with which he had succeeded earlier in the season. Snedecor rode 9-year-old Possum for the first time at NFSR over the weekend, the same horse that he used to win the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo in February.
“That horse has been good since day one,” Snedecor told ProRodeo.com; 2017 was Possum’s first appearance at National Finals Steer Roping.
The $68,336 that Snedecor earned atop Possum over the weekend is the second most in NFSR history. Only Cody Lee’s $70,651 prize from 2016 is more.
But like any cowboy, Snedecor said the money is secondary compared to the shiny gold buckle and the status that comes with it in the rodeo world.
“This is a great feeling,” Snedecor said. “Any time you can get one of them gold buckles added to your list again, that’s awesome. It’s good to see a shiny gold buckle again.”