COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – Tyson Durfey waited until the 11th hour to qualify for his ninth Super Bowl of rodeo. By winning the second round and the average at the Sept. 24-29 Pasadena (Texas) Livestock Show & Rodeo, Durfey jumped from 17th position in the WEATHER GUARD® PRCA World Standings all the way to Las Vegas, leapfrogging Adam Gray, J.C. Malone and Marty Yates. Durfey will enter the Dec. 1-10 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo presented by Polaris RANGER in the No. 14 spot, with Yates holding down the 15th and final position in the tie-down roping. “This is a great feeling,” Durfey said. “There’s a lot of pressure coming into the last week, but we were lucky enough to have some blessings from the Lord and lucky enough to get in there. Now I just want to be home with my newborn baby and my wife and work on the ranch. It’s about as good of a finish as I could’ve asked for.” Durfey also competed in Vegas in 2007-11 and 2013-15. “Even though this is my ninth NFR, it feels like my first,” he said. It took a big-time performance to get the job done. Durfey tied for ninth in the first round in Pasadena to earn just $82, so the pressure was really on for round two. He responded with a 7.5-second run that was the fastest of the rodeo. The team of Zac Small and Wesley Thorp finished second in the team roping at the Ross Kelly Arena, and that allowed Thorp to clinch his first berth in the WNFR, eliminating Justin Wade Davis and Logan Medlin. Small was already safely in the field, so this assures they can rope together on the sport’s biggest stage. Coleman Proctor secured the final spot on the heading side by finishing sixth in the team roping average with Billie Jack Saebens, quashing the challenge of Billy Bob Brown and Logan Medlin. British Columbia’s Jake Watson finished sixth in the saddle bronc riding in Pasadena, while Tyrell Smith failed to place, assuring that Watson will make his WNFR debut this December, one of three Canadians to qualify in the bronc riding, along with Zeke Thurston and Clay Elliott. Bull rider Trevor Kastner’s nice late-season surge fell short in Pasadena, leaving the 15th position to 2011 World Champion Shane Proctor. It was the same story for Jake Rinehart in steer wrestling when he failed to earn checks in either Pasadena or Mona, Utah, so the 15th WNFR spot went to Cody Cabral, making him the first Hawaiian bulldogger to ever make the field, and the first Hawaiian in any event since bull rider Myron Duarte made the last of his eight appearances in 2004. Rinehart, Joshua Clark, Dean Gorsuch, Clayton Moore and Sterling Lambert were all within mathematical striking distance at the start of the week in the tightly-bunched steer wrestling field, and none could get enough done to unseat Cabral. The only WNFR berth that was still open for discussion entering the final night of the PRCA season Sept. 30, was in the bareback riding. After a fourth-place finish in Pasadena, Bill Tutor had moved to within $1,857 of Wyatt Denny in 15th place, and both of them rode in Mona. Denny retained the 15th spot in the standings by finishing second in Mona, while challenger Tutor was fourth there; both had their rides in the last few hours of the season.
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – The 2021 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo didn’t start the way Dona Kay Rule had hoped with two downed barrels but she […]
December 03, 2021
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