The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas showcases the top cowboys from around the world, competing in a variety of staple events. To be invited, you’re required to be in the Top 15 money-winners for that year.
Aaron Tsinigine (Navajo) captured his first world roping title in dramatic fashion on Saturday. The 29-year-old snared his steer in 4.1 seconds in the 10th and final round, earning $227,672 to edge Luke Brown in the standings ($224,987) and win a world title as a header in team roping.
It was a dream-filled ride for the excited Navajo cowboy, who, alongside heeler Ryan Motes, won the first and third rounds. “Two out of three rounds is everything I’ve always dreamed of,” Tsinigine told the PRCA.
A fellow tribal member did his best to stymie that goal. Derrick Begay, of Seba Dalkai, Arizona, found himself on top of the leaderboard after five rounds. He and childhood idol and teammate Clay O’Brien Cooper won rounds two, four and five. Begay finished a career-best third place ($218,464) while fellow Navajo Erich Rogers, of Round Rock, Arizona, was ninth ($163,554).