CODY, Wyo. - The 2015 winter run for bareback rider R.C. Landingham was forgettable.
The Pendleton, Ore., cowboy suffered a severe rib injury at the Southwestern Stock Show Exposition in Fort Worth, Texas Feb. 2 and was out of action until April 8.
Landingham, however, has made up for lost time with strong performances, like the one he delivered at the Cody Stampede (July 1-4).
Landingham had an 87-point ride on C5 Rodeo’s Make Up Face to capture his first career title at the Cody Stampede.
“I’ve seen that horse a few times and I’ve see guys be a lot of points on him and I’ve seen a lot of guys get bucked off of him,” said Landingham, 24. “I wasn’t really sure what to expect, but he left there kind of hard and electric and had a lot of kick. He was kind of fast, but really good in the air and I just pretty much had to keep setting my feet. About six seconds he gave me a little bit of whiplash, but it still ended up being a pretty good ride.”
Landingham recorded his winning ride on July 2 and collected a $10,667 check for his effort. Tim O’Connell was second with an 86-point ride on Frontier Rodeo’s champion bucking horse Full Baggage.
“I knew I was going to be a lot of points, up there near the top,” Landingham said. “I’ve never even won a check at Cody. Coming into the month of April I only had six rodeos and I’ve been going to as many as I can to try and catch up to everybody and this win at Cody will help me move up in the standings and give me a lot more hope to make the NFR.”
Landingham was 16th in the June 29 Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings with $27,902, and is likely to move up into the top 10. Landingham also has had several solid other outings over Cowboy Christmas in addition to Cody.
The last two seasons Landingham has just missed qualifying for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, finishing 16th in 2013 and 2014.
“Basically the only reason I haven’t made it (the WNFR) is because of injuries (the last two years),” said Landingham, who is chasing his inaugural WNFR bid. “I hurt my back (in 2013) and last year in September I hurt my neck. The only thing I’ve changed this year is I’m being more picky about what horses I go to get on. I’m just trying to stay healthy, and it would be awesome if I could get there (to the WNFR) this year, especially with all the money they have added this year. I know I feel like I’m riding better than I ever have.”
Other winners at the this rodeo were all-around cowboy Trevor Brazile ($ 11,369 tie-down roping, and team roping), steer wrestler Clayton Moore (3.9 seconds), team ropers Aaron Tsinigine and Ryan Motes (4.2 seconds), saddle bronc rider Chuck Schmidt (87 points on Frontier Rodeo’s Tip Off), tie-down roper Cimarron Boardman (8.1 seconds), barrel racer Jill Welsh (16.91 seconds) and bull rider Brett stall (87 points on Frontier Rodeo’s Flash Boy).
Read more about the Cody Stampede in the July 17 PSN