FRANKTOWN, Colo. – He dominated the entire regular season, but it takes one more great week to win the biggest prize. Tyler Turco heads to Casper, Wyo. poised to become the Montana Grizzlies’ first college rodeo national champion in 10 years.
“To be a national champ for Montana would mean a lot, just because I came up here on kind of a wild hair,” said the junior saddle bronc rider. “And things have been just falling together really well. They were betting on me to be a leader, so I’d like to be a leader for the Montana rodeo team by going and winning nationals, for sure.”
Turco cruised through the Big Sky region and ranks No. 1 in the country going to the CNFR. He said he only missed two horses out of the chute, otherwise he felt he would have won every college rodeo he entered this season.
All the scores reset to zero at the national finals, so Turco must match his previous success to stay on top. But the Colorado native feels he’s found the key to having success in the arena.
“Bronc riding is one of the toughest events to master, because there is so many moving parts,” said Turco. “What separated me coming into these college rodeos, I just had a different mental game than most of those other guys. I knew that consistency at those college rodeos is what counts. You have to make every short round. You have to get points. Even if you have a snorty horse or something that’s not fun to ride, you’ve got to get him rode. It might not be your prettiest ride, but you’ve got to get him rode to make any point, and you have to just keep getting points to be consistent.”
Turco also competes professionally and finished third in the Mountain States circuit in 2017. He will ride in three pro rodeos this week before taking his first ride in the CNFR on Sunday afternoon.