Timed Event Titans Headed Back into Battle at the Lazy E
The 2022 Cinch Timed Event Championship is set to take center stage March 10-12 at the world-famous Lazy E Arena. As this year’s Timed Event Titans prepare for battle—five runs in five events, heading, heeling, tie-down roping, steer wrestling and steer roping, in the hallowed red-dirt ground of that massive 160’ by 440’ arena—it’s the perfect time to take true, hard-core cowboy fans inside the belly of the beast that is the Ironman of Pro Rodeo. Oh, and how about announcing the fact that the Jr Ironman champ’s check just doubled while we’re at it?
Cinch Timed Event Warriors to Watch
These are the all-around hands who will take aim at the $200,000 on the line at the 2022 Cinch Timed Event Championship, including the $100,000 champ’s check.
*Cinch Timed Event Champion
1 Marcus Theriot*
2 Paul David Tierney**
3 Seth Hall
4 Lane Karney
5 Clay Smith
6 Roger Nonella
7 Erich Rogers
8 Haven Meged
9 Russell Cardoza
10 Daniel Green***
11 Jess Tierney*
12 Tyler Waters
13 Clayton Hass
14 Taylor Santos*
15 Justin Thigpen*
16 Kyle Lockett**
17 Cole Patterson
18 Cody Doescher
19 Tyler Pearson
20 Shad Mayfield
Defender of the Crown
Mississippi’s Marcus Theriot will be back in action at the Lazy E after a $104,000 showing in 2021.
Mississippi’s Marcus Theriot cashed the $100,000 Cinch Timed Event Championship check in 2021. James Phifer Photo
“The Timed Event is the biggest, most prestigious event I’ve ever won,” said defending TEC titlist Theriot of Poplarville, Mississippi. “There aren’t many chances to get it done, and only one guy wins it every year. People ask me what it takes to win it now that I know, and I tell them, ‘A lot of patience, concentration and just staying focused. I definitely feel like you have to be made for this event to win it.’”
Father Time of the TEC
Tierney Family Patriarch Paul won the Timed Event four times, and was a 29-time Ironman warrior before making his last TEC appearance one month shy of his 60th birthday in 2012. James Phifer Photo
Paul Tierney knows a thing or three about the Cinch Timed Event Championship. He’s a four-time TEC titlist, and has two Timed Event champion sons in Jess and Paul David. Daddy Paul competed in 29 TECs, the last when he was one month shy of 60 years old in 2012.
“I’m kind of an all-around cowboy fanatic,” said Tierney, who’ll turn 70 on April 9, lives in Oral, South Dakota and will be cheering loud and proud at the Lazy E again in 2022. “Larry Mahan and Phil Lyne were my heroes growing up, and I rode barebacks, broncs and bulls in college. I competed in six events at the College (National) Finals (Rodeo) one year. I worked all three timed events once I got my (Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association) card, and winning the all-around was always my ultimate dream (Tierney was the world champion tie-down roper in 1979, and the world champion all-around cowboy in 1980).
“When the Timed Event came along, I thought, ‘This is a very true test of the all-around gamut.’ The cowboys who shine at the Timed Event are smart, strategic guys who outwork everybody. You have to be very tough to win the Timed Event, and horsepower and preparation are huge.”
Brothers in TEC Arms
Paul David Tierney is a two-time TEC titlist who’ll again do Timed Event battle alongside his big brother, Jess, who won the Ironman of Pro Rodeo in 2017. He’s steer roping here, but Paul David is best known on the professional rodeo trail as a header. James Phifer Photo
There are two sets of brothers in this year’s Timed Event field. In addition to Jess and Paul David Tierney, who were raised in South Dakota and now live in Oklahoma, California cowboys Lane Karney and Taylor Santos are also back in TEC action.
“Just being able to compete in the Timed Event is an honor,” said 2014 and 2016 TEC titlist Paul David, 32, who now has a short commute to Guthrie’s Lazy E Arena from Oklahoma City. “To be able to win it is even better. It feels pretty good, and $100,000 is a lot of money—life-changing money.”
“Timed Event contestants are the kind of cowboys who’d come in handy if you needed help on the ranch,” added 2020 TEC Champ Santos, who’s just coming off of his second National Finals Rodeo tie-down roping qualification and first National Finals Steer Roping appearance in 2021. “It makes me proud to carry on a great tradition started by legends like Leo Camarillo, who was a close family friend, and carried on by guys like the best there’s ever been, Trevor Brazile.”
California cowboy Taylor Santos is best known as a roper. The two-time National Finals Rodeo tie-down roper and National Finals Steer Roping qualifier won the 2020 Timed Event with hazing help from ProRodeo Hall of Famer Ote Berry, who will be back to help Taylor and his fellow Timed Event Titan brother Lane in 2022. James Phifer Photo
KC Jones entered his first Timed Event in 1992, and has been a TEC mainstay ever since.
“I didn’t even get a sniff of it at that first one,” said Jones, 54, who now splits his time between his native Wyoming and Georgia. “They spanked me and sent me home. I went home and practiced, and came back a little more prepared.
When KC Jones won his fifth Cinch Timed Event championship in 2021, the winner won $50,000. The ultimate Ironman now banks $100 grand. Jones must miss this year’s TEC due to an injured pinky on his roping hand, but vows to be back in 2023 at the age of 55 and swears he’s still in his prime. James Phifer Photo
“A lot of guys who thought they were tough came to the Timed Event one time, and never came back. What people don’t understand until they’ve been there is, you might be going 500 miles an hour when you get off on a bulldogging steer in that 440-foot arena.”
Jones has five Timed Event titles to his credit, and has finished second six times.
“You’re not going to luck into winning anything at the Timed Event,” he said. “You might outdraw them in a round or two, but not on 25 head. So you better come with some skills.”
Sadly, Jones will have to sit this one out.
“I was floating the teeth on a broodmare, she reared up in the stall, and when she came back down she pinned me against a hay feeder on the side of the stall,” he explained. “When she came down on me, she bent the little finger on my right hand all the way back to my hand.
“I’ve won the Timed Event with the fingers on my left hand taped together, but this is my right hand. I just started swinging a rope again, but I can’t dally and pull back on a dally worth a hoot. The Timed Event’s tough enough when you’re sound. But I’ll be back and loaded for bear next year. I’m just now reaching my prime.”
The Timed Event can be a bit wild to watch from family cheering sections. Veteran Jones has a tip from his mom to all others.
“My mom won’t watch the Timed Event,” he grinned. “When I’m up, she goes to the women’s bathroom (at the Lazy E) and punches all the hand dryers, so she can’t hear anything. Then she goes back up to the grandstands and asks people how I did.”
Another Ironman sidelined this year is 2018 Timed Event Champ Jordan Ketscher. In 2019, he had to have ACL and meniscus repair surgery on his right knee after a misstep in the steer wrestling at that year’s TEC. He’s out this year with pec-muscle problems.
“I strained my right pec muscle in the bulldogging at the Timed Event last year,” said Ketscher, 32, of Squaw Valley, California. “Then I think I tore it all the way in the calf roping at Red Bluff (Round-Up later last spring). I’m sad not to get to go to the Timed Event this year. I’ve enjoyed the heck out of it, and I don’t think I’m done. It’s an event I still love, and I sure see myself going back again.
“Winning the Timed Event is definitely my career highlight so far. It’s a prestigious event, and being one of only 17 guys to ever win it is pretty special. That kind of money is a big boost, but being able to have that buckle forever is a big deal. It’s something I can always be proud of.”
There are three Cinch Timed Event first-timers in 2022, and they’re all world champions. Shad Mayfield won the world tie-down roping title in 2020, Tyler Pearson won the gold bulldogging buckle in 2017 and Cole Patterson is the reigning world champion steer roper.
“Just the thrill of being able to do all of the events at one time for an overall time is exciting to me,” said New Mexico native Mayfield, 21, who now lives in Lipan, Texas. “I’ve watched the Timed Event every year it’s been on TV, and wanted to get into it pretty bad. This event brings out the biggest and best in everyone.”
“The Timed Event has always been on a pedestal for me to watch,” added Pearson, 36, of Atoka, Oklahoma. “To be one of the guys competing in it—and to have a chance to have my name on one of those banners that hang over the Lazy E Arena—is a dream come true.”
When Daniel Green won his third Timed Event title in 2013, he took a knee of gratitude for having passed the TEC test yet again. At 49, Green will be back in the Ironman lineup in 2022. James Phifer Photo
At 49, Daniel Green is the oldest Timed Event Titan in this year’s field. The three-time TEC titlist is closing in on $300,000 in career Ironman earnings, and knows all about closing this deal.
“What it takes to win the Timed Event is a loaded question, because it takes so much,” said Green, who’ll be 50 in July and makes his home in the original Cowboy Capital of the World in Oakdale, California. “You’ve got to be on your game and compete good to stand a chance. You’ve got to be on good horses and have good help. And you’ve got to get in the hat and draw some decent cattle. You need the ball to bounce your way sometimes to have success at the Timed Event.
“There are so many variables that come into play when you’re making 25 runs in five events. And they make this cowboy contest as hard as they can. You have to score, the cattle are strong and you’re rolling from one event to the next. You can’t really get in a groove in any one event, because you’re on to the next one rapid-fire. I don’t know what they could do to make the Timed Event any harder than it already is. There’s nothing easy about the Timed Event.”
With each passing year, Green appreciates the fitness factor Timed Event prep and participation make mandatory.
“I think if I quit going to the Timed Event, I’d get old,” he said. “I run and do push-ups, and try to get my body in some sort of shape rather than round. I know I don’t have that many years left, and I think the Timed Event keeps my body moving and that’s keeping me younger. The minute I quit looking forward to the Timed Event and getting ready for it, I’m going to get old.”
Green’s last Timed Event win was in 2013, and he says it was as much a mental test as a physical one.
“I had to keep pushing all the negative thoughts out of my mind that try to creep in,” he said. “I had to mentally tell myself what I wanted to happen. It was like, ‘Hey, everything you set out to do is still out in front of you…let’s go.’ You’ve got to cast away the negative thoughts and put your mind on a positive, ‘I’m here to win’ track. That can be easier said than done when you’re worn out. But the ‘poor me’ attitude will not help you at the Timed Event.
“This will be my 25th year competing at the Timed Event, and I’ve won it three times. That’s not a high percentage. But the most decorated rodeo cowboy ever (Brazile) has won it seven times. Even Trevor doesn’t have a high batting average at the Timed Event, and he’s a world champion in three events and made the NFR heeling.”
Jr Ironmen 2022
The boys are back in town, and the Jr Ironmen are getting a great big raise in Guthrie this year, with the total payout spiking from $20,000 to $30,000. Thanks to the World Champions Rodeo Alliance coming on board as the presenting sponsor, the big check that goes to the Jr Ironman champ has doubled from $10,000 last year to $20,000 in 2022.
1 Dawson Price
2 Tanner Meier
3 Jaylyn Hash
4 Clay Clayman
5 Briar Teague
6 Connor Griffith
7 Evan Bottini
8 Denton Good
9 Kolton Powell
10 Cayden Harmon
Defending Jr Ironman Champion Briar Teague of Rattan, Oklahoma—shown here heeling for Erich Rogers in 2021—is returning to the Jr Ironman roster in 2022. James Phifer Photo
Briar Teague took the Jr Ironman victory lap last year, and hopes to double down in 2022.
“More people know me now that I won the Jr Ironman,” said Teague, 20, who hangs his hat in Rattan, Oklahoma. “The recognition I got for that one win was pretty amazing. It paying twice what it did last year is going to be great. This is an event that’s just going to keep getting bigger and better.”
Cinch Timed Event Championship Weekend Schedule
Tickets to the 2022 Cinch Timed Event Championship can be purchased at www.lazye.com.
The five Cinch Timed Event Championship performances will be held as follows:
Performance 1, Thursday, March 10, 7:30 p.m.
Performance 2, Friday, March 11, 12 p.m.
Performance 3, Friday, March 11, 7:30 p.m.
Performance 4, Saturday, March 12, 12 p.m.
Performance 5, Saturday, March 12, 7:30 p.m.
After Parties: Nightly Upstairs in the Gold Buckle Cantina, 10:30 p.m.
Performance 1, Thursday, March 10, 3 p.m.
Performance 2, Friday, March 11, 9:30 a.m.
Performance 3, Saturday, March 12, 9:30 a.m.
By Kendra Santos
Kendra Santos has written about cowboys all her life, including longtime stints with the PRCA, PBR, BFI and The Team Roping Journal. She’s also mom to two 2022 Timed Event Championship cowboys, Lane Karney and Taylor Santos.