Hope T and Whitney D Dominate Bob Feist Invitational Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl

Hope Thompson and Whitney DeSalvo roped four steers in 30.78 seconds to daylight the field by almost eight seconds and take the $20,000 win at the 2022 BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Team Roping Hope Thompson and Whitney DeSalvo roped four steers in 30.78 seconds to daylight the field by almost eight seconds and take the $20,000 win at the 2022 BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Team Roping Photo BFI/Andersen CBarC Photo
April 06, 2022

Hope Thompson and Whitney DeSalvo are a time-tested team to be reckoned with. They’re the best of friends, and that chemistry has spilled straight into their super-successful partnership. Thompson and DeSalvo roped four steers in 30.78 seconds to take the $20,000 title at the BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Team Roping, and daylighted the 174-team field by 7.86 seconds. Thompson and DeSalvo have now won this roping two of the last three years, and were the reserve champs that third year.
Hope and Whitney took a half-second lead over the pack into the short round, and slammed the door with a snappy 7.22-second run.

“Winning is why we enter,” smiled Thompson, who’s a two-time Women’s Professional Rodeo Association world champion header, and also owns a WPRA breakaway roping title and a World Champions Rodeo Alliance heeling championship. “A repeat win with Whitney is pretty special, because she’s one of my best friends. I love her. She’s awesome.”
Four-time WPRA World Champion Heeler DeSalvo is the first-ever and only female 8 heeler in roping history.
“I struggled so bad early in the day today,” Whitney said humbly. “I had great partners, but of the first three steers I ran, I missed two and slipped a leg on the other one. I caught both of those steers I missed, then lost both feet. I placed in the first round with Lari Dee (Guy), then turned around and missed our second one.
“I told Hope before we roped our first steer, ‘I’m catching ’em, I just don’t know if I can keep ’em in it. If it goes on, you might want to hold your breath a little.’”
The daughter-mom team of Rylea and Debbie Fabrizio roped four steers in 38.64 for second and $7,500 in the BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl. Kersti Passig and Lenay Willie were 27.42 on three to take the 9.5 Incentive. Passig and Willie were presented $3,750, Cactus Saddles, Charlie 1 Horse Hats, Gist Buckles, YETI Carryalls, Cactus Saddlery Pads, Heel-O-Matic Bones and Hox, and Cactus Ropes. In case you’re curious, a World Series barrier was used for the All-Girl.
Thompson and DeSalvo first won the BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Team Roping together in 2020, when the BFI moved to the Lazy E. They were second last year, then struck again in 2022.
“We’ve pretty much been roping together since I started team roping,” said Hope, who calls Abilene, Texas home. “It started first as a friendship. We’ve been really good friends for a really long time. We’ve had so much fun, and have won a lot of ropings together.
“Whitney is absolutely the most dominant woman heeler in the world today. And if you don’t even segregate it, she fits right in at any open roping. She’s a freak at what she does. Heeling’s her #1 passion, but if she worked as hard at the heading or breakaway, she’d be just as dominant in those, too. I just shake my head at how effortless she makes it look. Whitney’s a badass.”
Hope T can’t quite decide which event she likes best.
“I’m not sure I could pick,” said the talented roper, clinician and horse trainer, who’s a 5+ header and a 4+ heeler. “I’m really passionate about training the breakaway horses. But anytime you put a rope in my hand, I love it all.”
Hope rode her sorrel giant Andre, who she bought and trained as a 4-year-old and is 11 now. Whitney rode her 11-year-old sorrel mare, Becky.
“We drew good steers,” Hope said. “But when I back in there with Whitney, I’m in no hurry. She gives me so much confidence. Knowing that we’ll be fine if I just score, rope and turn the steer makes it fun and easy.
“And what can you not say about the Lazy E? I love it here. It’s awesome. We roped good steers. The ground was awesome. I’m grateful for the opportunity to get to rope on this platform as part of BFI Week.”
DeSalvo lives in Monticello, Arkansas, where she rides and ropes for Broken H Farms.
“The Lazy E’s been good to me,” Hope said. “I won first, second and third in this roping the first year the BFI moved here, in 2020.”
DeSalvo won the All-Girl Roping at the 2021 BFI in Reno with Jenna Johnson, and second with Hope T at the 2021 BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl in Guthrie before working her way back to the winner’s circle with her great friend in 2022.
“Hope and I have a great friendship first,” Whitney said. “We’re really good friends, she rides a really good horse and we win. I’ve won more with Hope than anyone else, and there’s no pressure roping with her. We have fun, but we still take care of business. It just works.”
DeSalvo’s next roping goals?
“Logan Graham (who also was her BFI header this year) and I are going to try to make the Great Lakes Circuit Finals,” she said. “It’s also a goal to try and do better at the open ropings.
“I absolutely look forward to this roping. It being during BFI Week makes it even more prestigious. It just gives it a little bit cooler feeling, especially because the last couple years I’ve also entered The Feist.”
Who are these headliner women’s favorite ropers in the whole, wide world to watch?
“I always find myself watching Kaleb Driggers—the different horses he rides, and how his loops hit,” Hope said. “Lari Dee and I have gotten to talk to him about competing. Getting to ask him questions and getting his answers, then watching him put it into example is pretty cool.”
“Paul (Eaves) is probably my favorite to watch,” added Whitney. “I worked for him for a while, so I’ve gotten to watch his style a lot. I have a lot of respect for him as a person, and his work ethic. Paul has about as flawless a swing and position as anyone.”

Conner and her horse Dutch also won the 18 & Under Youth Incentive at the BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Breakaway Roping. Photo BFI/Andersen CbarC Photo

 

Louisiana’s Josie Conner Wins 2022 BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Breakaway Roping
The BFI Charlie 1 Horse All-Girl Breakaway Roping sent BFI Week 2022 out with a big bang, and young gun Cajun cowgirl Josie Conner stuck it on ’em April 5 for $11,000, including $1,000 for the 18 & Under Youth Incentive. Home-schooled high school senior Conner of Iowa, Louisiana, roped three calves in 12.59 seconds for the last big win of this year’s BFI Week.
“This is awesome,” said Josie, who’s 18, graduates in May and plans to start college at McNeese State University in Lake Charles, Louisiana in the fall. “The BFI is such a prestigious event in the team roping world, and they were one of the first big jackpots to bring the breakaway along with it. We appreciate that, and this was a pretty good day.
“I’ve had a lot of success at the Lazy E. It’s such a great facility, and the people who run it are so nice. I always know my horses are safe here. I just feel comfortable here.”
Josie is the daughter of Jade and Wendi Conner, and Daddy Jade is always in her corner—literally. Josie’s giving her trademark sorrel horse, Tonka, a mini vacation while she and her parents head for the spring-run rodeos in California.
“I almost cried when I left Tonka home yesterday,” Josie said. “This is the first place I’ve been without Tonka. But Dutch (who’s also a sorrel) has done great, and I really just feel like this is going to help me get rolling on him.”
There were 105 entries, the scoreline was one under, and the calves were running. Second to Conner’s 12.50 on three was Cassidy Kelly at 14.30. She won $6,000. 
It’s a great time to be a young breakaway roper, and Conner is capitalizing on it.
“Breakaway roping has grown so much as a sport, and all the girls have upped their game,” Josie said. “It’s just so cool to grow up with the sport. Between the rodeos, what the WCRA (World Champions Rodeo Alliance) and ropings are doing, it’s crazy. It’s happening fast, and I’m really excited for that.”
Her dad has had the biggest hand in helping Josie climb the roping ranks. She’s also a student of the game.
“I like to watch all the breakaway ropers, and take bits and pieces from everyone and see how they might work for me,” she said. “They’ve all impacted me. As the sport’s gotten bigger, everyone has upped their game. And that’s helped me up mine.”
She had to wait to turn 18 to get her pro card. That makes this Josie’s rookie year.
“Because I’m a rookie, I had to watch Fort Worth, San Antonio and Houston from home,” she said. “But I’ve had a good year at the youth events, and I’m excited to get rolling now. I’m just going to try to get to the good rodeos, and the big open ropings. I try to do my job every single time, make as few mistakes as possible and not leave money on the table.”

By /BFI Press Release