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Tuf Cooper prepares for third NFSR appearance

by TRACY RENCK | Oct 25, 2019

PRCA Media Coordinator


COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – A year ago, Tuf Cooper saw a chance to win a steer roping world championship slip through his grasp.

Cooper came in as the season leader to the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping, but finished as the reserve world champion to Scott Snedecor. Snedecor earned $122,931 to edge Cooper ($113,157) for the gold buckle.

Cooper heads to his third consecutive Clem McSpadden NFSR third in the PRCA | RAM World Standings with $55,846. The NFSR will be at the Kansas Star Arena in Mulvane, Nov. 22-23, with the top 15 steer ropers vying for a world championship and a share of $425,000.

“I just need to keep working hard on making improvements and realize how blessed I am to qualify for another steer roping finals,” said Cooper, 29. “I’m excited for the opportunity I have.” 

Cooper trails leader and brother-in-law Trevor Brazile ($71,845) and Vin Fisher Jr. ($59,844) in the world standings.

Cooper, a four-time world champion – three in tie-down roping (2011-12, 2014) and one in all-around (2017) – is shooting for his first NFSR title.

He had an outstanding 2018 steer roping regular season, establishing the PRCA record for money earned in a season before the NFSR with $89,427. The previous record was set in 1998 by the legendary Guy Allen with $87,927.

However, Cooper had a rough NFSR, registering a no-time in six of the 10 rounds. He finished 15th in the NFSR average.

“The 10-head average plays a big role in the world championship, and that’s why we play the game to win the world championship,” Cooper said. “In order to do well in the average, you have to catch, and I need to learn from my mistakes that I had last year. Mistakes are important because they give you a chance to go work on things and get them right. It’s about the process. You can’t fast-forward to things that you want in life. That’s not how it works. We have to live each moment as it comes."

Cooper bounced back on the second day of the 2018 NFSR. He won Round 6 in 8.3 seconds, tying the fastest run in NFSR history with Cash Myers (2006), Jess Tierney (2015) and Allen (2016).

Cooper then placed fourth in Round 7 with an 11.0-second run and won Round 9 with a 9.5-second run.

This year at the NFSR, Cooper plans on riding Trip, 11, and knows defeating Brazile for the world title will not be easy.

This is Brazile’s 22nd NFSR qualification. He’s won six NFSR gold buckles (2006-07, 2011 and 2013-15). Brazile has won a PRCA-record 24 gold buckles – in addition to his NFSR buckles, he's also won a PRCA-record 14 in all-around (2002-04, 2006-15, 2018), tie-down roping (2007, 2009-10) and team roping (2010).

“Trevor and I will do some practicing together before the NFSR,” Cooper said. “He’s dang sure one of the best steer ropers ever. I’m still a sponge just trying to absorb as much knowledge as I can. He’s the best cowboy to ever compete. I’m going to put myself in the right environment and help him out as much as I can in the practice pen because being around someone like that rubs off on you. You put yourself around winners, you become a winner.”

Doors at the Kansas Star Arena open to the 2019 Clem McSpadden NFSR at 6:30 p.m. (CT) with competition beginning at 7:30 p.m. Tickets from $28 plus taxes and convenience fees. To book tickets go to To book your 2019 NFSR room and ticket package visit





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