Finale Drawouts occur every year at this time and they seem especially "brisk" this year. Excluding the main category of drawouts that occur for financial considerations, we have four detached digits, two groin pulls, four shoulder surgeries, complications from surgeries, graduations, weddings, horse health issues, two potential divorces and one advanced pregnancy (congrats Maquel), to name a few.
About half of the partners have found replacements. The question has been raised on why we don't go ahead and leave those entries out to cut down the team counts. The answer is that once the draw has been completed we need to keep a number balance between the rotations so the "fairness" issue doesn't come up. Yes Connie has been putting wait list teams in to keep the rotations balanced, but most of those teams involve ropers that are already entered in other divisions ( they have stalls and they have rooms).