In his second rodeo following the birth of his son, Jack VanderLans won the Tie-Down Roping at the Aug. 12-13 Ventura County Fair Rodeo.
The Temecula cowboy had an average aggregate of 20.7 seconds on two head. Tyler Forsberg of Fillmore had the second-place average of 21.0 seconds, and Oakdale cowboy Wyatt Hansen placed third with an average of 22.8 seconds.
“It was great. It’s absolutely neat that my wife could be there, and I can share it with my son and my daughter,” VanderLans said.
Hank VanderLans was born June 23. Jack and Tawnie VanderLans also have a daughter, Lilly, who will celebrate her fourth birthday, Sept. 13. All four family members went to Ventura.
“That was fun,” Jack VanderLans said.
Factors in addition to the birth of his second child have limited VanderLans’ rodeo activity this year.
“We’ve done a lot of work on our house,” he said.
Jack and Tawnie VanderLans performed most of that work themselves.
“We’ve been pretty close by,” Jack VanderLans said.
Hank VanderLans’ first rodeo as a spectator – and Jack VanderLans’ first rodeo as a competitor after his son’s birth – was the Aug. 4-6 Santa Barbara Old Spanish Days Stock Horse Show and Rodeo, so the Ventura rodeo was the second for Hank VanderLans.
“Those are two pretty fun rodeos to take your family to,” Jack VanderLans said.
The Santa Barbara Old Spanish Days Stock Horse Show and Rodeo had one go-round. VanderLans, who rode Tuffy for the Tie-Down Roping, had a time of 9.7 seconds in that event which placed third and added $1,197 to his earnings.
“I did good in Calf Roping,” he said.
VanderLans also competed in the Steer Wrestling event but did not place at Santa Barbara.
“I didn’t have any luck in the bulldogging, though. I kind of went a little too long to win anything,” he said.
During the two-day Ventura County Fair Rodeo, VanderLans competed in the Saturday afternoon and Sunday evening Steer Wrestling performances and the Sunday afternoon and Sunday evening Tie-Down Roping sessions. Spending two days at Ventura was not an imposition for VanderLans.
“It was still pretty enjoyable because the Ventura Fairgrounds is literally on the ocean,” he said.
The Ventura County Fair activities other than the rodeo also made the weekend enjoyable for the family.
“They have a really nice fair,” VanderLans said. “It worked out pretty well.”
VanderLans placed second in the first Steer Wrestling go-round. He had a time of 9.5 seconds to trail only the 7.4-second run of Tucker Allen, who lives in the Ventura County town of Oak View. Second place in the go-round paid VanderLans $185.
VanderLans used Rudy, who is owned by Temecula’s Larry Rogers, for the Steer Wrestling event. Rogers raised Rudy from when he was a foal.
“I thought the horse could make a good Steer Wrestling horse, so he was nice enough to let me try,” VanderLans said.
Wade Denny of Menifee was VanderLans’ hazer who guided the steer. Denny’s son, Tommy, placed fifth in the Bull Riding with a score of 62 points which earned him $282.
VanderLans did not catch his steer in the second go-round.
“The second round I had some bad luck,” he said.
He drew a steer he was unable to catch in the first go-round.
“I had a game plan, but it didn’t work out,” VanderLans said.
VanderLans rode Tuffy for Tie-Down Roping. He had a time of 9.3 seconds in the first go-round, which placed second.
“I had a pretty good calf,” VanderLans said. “They used the same calves as they did in Santa Barbara. I kind of had an idea what they were going to be like.”
Forsberg won the go-round with a time of 9.0 seconds. VanderLans does not consider his time of 9.3 seconds to be disappointing for the Ventura arena.
“It has kind of a deep box,” he said. “The arena is pretty short. The back end comes up pretty fast.
That means a cowboy must catch his calf quickly before tying three of the calf’s legs.
“I think that’s a huge advantage with the horse I own. He works really well,” VanderLans said. “As long as I don’t make a mistake we’re going to be fast.”
Second place in the go-round paid VanderLans $234.
A time of 11.4 seconds gave VanderLans third place in the second go-round.
“I was a little longer,” he said. “I drew a little stronger calf, and I made a couple of little mistakes that cost me some extra time.
VanderLans was also more cautious, as his objective was to win the average rather than the go-round.
“That’s kind your ultimate goal,” VanderLans said. “My goal was to try to win the average.”
Spencer Mitchell, who lives in the Fresno County town of Orange Cove, won the go-round in 9.0 seconds, and Hansen was second with a time of 9.1 seconds. Forsberg’s time of 12.0 seconds gave him fourth place in the go-round. VanderLans added $156 to his earnings for the go-round position. The $467 VanderLans received for winning the average brought his Ventura total for the two events to $1,042.
The All-Around championship is given to the cowboy with the most money in at least two events. Hansen also competed in Team Roping as a heeler, partnering with header Bo Bacigalupi of Oakdale. They placed third both in the second go-round and in the average to give each cowboy $713 in that event. Hansen’s $468 of Tie-Down Roping earnings gave him $1,181 for the rodeo.
“I think I came up a little short in the All-Around,” VanderLans said.