In just its second year as part of Wrangler BFI Week presented by Yeti, the #10.5 Over 40 roping on March 16 paid a couple of grandfathers a healthy $70,000 cash plus saddles, buckles, and a host of other prizes.
The team of Darwin McGowan and Scott Seiler made a business-like run of 8.86 seconds on a good steer at the fourth callback position and watched as the top three callbacks missed.
“We’ve never won a dime together!” marveled Seiler, a peanut farmer and 6 heeler from Ocala, Florida, who met McGowan through Jerry Bailey. He and Bailey also placed in the short round of the #11.5 Businessman’s Roping.
McGowan and Seiler’s final steer was on the slower end but had small cow-like horns which McGowan admitted were “a little spooky.” Their win was the richest-ever team roping payoff for Seiler, who has never practiced with McGowan but does rope with him a bit in Arizona, where McGowan has spent the past seven or eight winters.
“He’s pretty easy and relaxed,” Seiler said of his elder partner. “Nothing shakes him.”
McGowan, 71, is an Oklahoma native and pipeline inspector who recently survived a bout with Covid-19. He’s no stranger to big wins, having clinched the #11.5 victory in Reno back in 2012.
“Even in Reno, I never got too revved up,” said the consummate joker. “I’m old. Sometimes I wish I got a little more nervous. But I won that roping in Reno with a really good friend and now to have won this with Scott is special. My goal was not to catch any around the neck and I did it twice today and he caught both of them anyway.”
Seiler’s goal is to lure McGowan to Florida for a week or two next winter.
Wrangler BFI Week wraps up with the Hooey Jr. BFI Championships on March 18. All events are live-streamed on www.WranglerNetwork.com.
Complete Results from the Cactus #10.5 Over 40 on March 16:
First Round: 1. Lonnie Cox and Justin Crist, 7.76 seconds, $3,500; 2. Mark Collins and Randy McEntire, 7.80, $3,000; 3. Jeremy Olsen and Alan Chappell, 7.85, $2,500.
Second Round: Mike Shaw and David Ferrell, 6.63 seconds, $3,500; 2. Brad Lands and Robert Dean, 7.75, $3,000; 3. Steve Taylor and Russell Hild, 7.83, $2,500.
Short Round: 1. Bill Farmer and Todd Mathews, 7.24 seconds, $3,500; 2. Criquett Scott and Blane Chapman, 8.06, $3,000; 3. Darwin McGowan and Scott Seiler, 8.86, $2,500.
Average: 1. Darwin McGowan and Scott Seiler, 44.46 seconds on four steers, $70,000; 2. Tammy Ellerman and Jim Matlack, 45.64, $48,500; 3. Bret Carlson and Travis Klingeman, 46.85, $36,000; 4. Bill Farmer and Todd Mathews, 48.17, $25,250; 5. Tracey Cearley and Trey Shivers, 52.36, $19,000; 6. Arnold Felts and Goose Cummings, 52.54, $12.500; 7. Bret Steele and Kyle Murdoch, 53.47, $8,000; 8. Criquett Scott and Blane Chapman, 55.06, $8,000; 9. Coby LittleSoldier and Darren Duvall, 58.17, $6,000; 10. G.R. Carter Jr. and Trenton Tucker, 60.38, $6,000; 11. MaryAnn Brown and Kenny Brown, 63.20, $5,000; 12. Tommy Anderson and Jason Grimm, 32.60 seconds on three steers, $5,000.