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Speed Williams Launches New Team Roping Concept
Eight-time World Champion Speed Williams is introducing a new team roping concept that will put the fun back into roping and ensure that the sport develops in the future.
By: Brad Parker
Speed's Match Roping allows teams to rope head-to-head in single-elimination tournaments in local arenas against limited entries. Williams is launching the concept with producers across the country.
""This is a whole new game that's brings the fun back to roping instead of the all-day waits for marathon ropings," he says. "Now we can spend our time, energy and money on roping, instead of on the hassle and expenses of traveling to ropings."
Williams says the concept was designed for grassroots ropers and backyard producers in the U.S., but it's already generated interest internationally.
"The interest in these ropings has already been sky-high in the states," he says, "and we've got ropers in Australia, Italy and Canada who all want to start producing them."
The patent-pending concept places teams in tournament brackets. Each team competes against another team in a head-to-head match with a maximum of three steers. Winners advance to a final Money Match in a way that one roper has described as "like being in a short round every round."
"It's been a long-time dream of mine to bring back the fun to roping," says Williams. "Most people rope as a hobby, as a way to enjoy themselves with friends and family. That's how I grew up learning to rope and I believe it's what we need to ensure our sport continues to grow in the future."
Williams says the time spent driving to ropings and all of the expenses associated with them including fuel, hotels, meals and stall fees are keeping many ropers from enjoying the sport, especially during the current recession.
"Now you can rope with friends at your local arena in a format that encourages competition and be done in the time that it takes to watch a movie," he says.
A 16-team tournament is usually completed in less than an hour and a 32-team roping is done in less than two hours.
"The short time factor has really been a positive note for ropers," says Williams. "You can have fun roping and still be able to plan the rest of your day."
Speed's Match Roping is headquartered in Scottsdale, Ariz., and was formed by Williams; Gary Poythress, one of the original founders of the USTRC; and Thomas J. Stewart, businessman and team roper.
"We are looking at ensuring that team roping develops and grows in the future," Williams says. "We're harnessing the power of the Internet to schedule events and take entries."
The website, at www.matchroping.com, features upcoming events, results and frequently asked questions about how Speed's Match Roping works. Ropers enter online and tournament producers manage their ropings on the site.
Ropers earn points for entering a Speed's Match Roping as well as winning matches in the tournaments. The points are tracked online and point leaders will have their entry fees to a series of Territorial Tournaments around the country paid courtesy of Speed's Match Roping. Winners of these tournaments will win their entry fees for the Speed's Match Roping Finals to be held at the Lone Star Arena in Stephenville, Tex., next year.
Williams says his involvement in the business creation and launch has raised a few eyebrows.
"I've spent almost all of my life in the arena," he says. "So when I tell people I'm in an office in Scottsdale most of the time now, they can't believe it. The thing is, I'm actually enjoying it. It's a huge change for me, but it's exciting to develop and introduce a game that is good for ropers and good for the sport of Team Roping."
For more information about Speed's Match Roping and to follow Speed's blog, go to www.matchroping.com.
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Speed’s Match Roping is a new and exciting Team Roping concept that pits teams head-to-head in single-elimination tournaments for cash prizes and the opportunity to win seats in regional and national matches.