What is the Circuit Finals? The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Assoc., has 12 regions in the U.S. divided into circuits, plus Canada has one circuit, and Mexico has one — for a total of 14 circuits.
Each year, the season leader from each circuit and the Finals winner from each circuit earn the right to compete for the National Circuit Championship, which will be held at the Pikes Peak or Bust Rodeo near Colorado Springs, CO., July 13–16, 2022. (Unfortunately, also the final weekend of the Calgary Stampede, so someone might have a tough decision to make…)
The NFR Open, formerly titled the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo, is the most prestigious rodeo under the PRCA circuit system and will feature two contestants in each event from each of the 12 U.S. circuits, plus Canada and Mexico, bringing more than 200 contestants to the Norris-Penrose Event Center for five competition rounds over the four days.
Twenty rodeos in Canada are designated as Circuit Rodeos, such as Teepee Creek, Alta, Kennedy, Sask, Cranbrook, B.C., and Benalto, Alta., among others.
The Maple Leaf Circuit Finals Rodeo held at Agribition in Regina, Sask., has four go-rounds — meaning each contestant will go four times, and the combined results will determine the Champion in each event.
I am really enjoying the Finals. The only things that could have made tonight’s broadcast better would have been if my Access internet didn’t decide to buffer forEVER during the Breakaway Roping, and that FloRodeo crews didn’t have what I’m assuming was a major equipment failure starting at Saddle Bronc, when the graphics of the competitor’s names and scores / times were no longer on the screen — and they didn’t reappear until the bull riding. I tried really hard to get all of the scores/times, but they were not always announced.
In Bareback, it was Jacob Stemo from Bashaw, Alta., on Duffy’s L10 Buckwheat scoring 83.5-pts, Cole Goodine from Carbon and Linden Woods of High River split 2/3 with 80.5-pts.
Steer Wrestling saw the legendary Curtis Cassidy of Donalda on Tyson winning the round at 3.7-sec’s, Matt Richardson from Olds and Ryan Schuckburg from Innisfail were second and third, respectively.
It was Team Roping sensations from Barrhead, Kagen and Tate Schmidt, who took first with a run of 3.9-sec’s. Wyatt Eirikson of Okotoks and Denver Johnson of Strathmore were 4.4-sec’s, and the Bonnett brothers, Keely and Logan from Ponoka, got it done in 4.5-sec’s.
Saddle Bronc saw Lucas Macza of High River win the round with his score of 83-pts on C5 Rodeo’s T80 Another Sunday, Kole Ashbacher of Arrowwood was second with 82-pts and veteran Sam Kelts of Stavely was third with 80.5-pts. Ashbacher and Kelts are sitting first and second in the Average, so tomorrow’s rides will be vital.
Brady Whiteside won Ladies Barrels – but again, there was no scoreboard to double-check her time which I believe was 13.679-sec’s which would be the fastest time of the week. I think that Shelby Spielman on Hot Donna was second at 13.777-sec’s and third was Taylor Manning at 13.88-sec’s. I never did hear Kamloops, B.C., Brooke Wills’ time, so this might not be accurate, but again, I’ll get back to you on this. And, by the way, Brooke, a lifelong resident of the Kamloops, B.C., area is the 2019 Canadian Barrel Racing Champion and regardless of what was announced, she is not from the “wrong side of the Rockies.”
In Tie-Down Roping, we saw another phenomenal run by a helluva cowboy. This time, Riley Warren drew the calf that we’ve nicknamed Allemande Left, so when the feisty pint-sized bovine circled hard to the left, Riley fired an old ranch loop over his horse’s neck and nailed him. He then wrapped him up in a totally respectable time We knew he didn’t win the round, the announcer failed to tell the time, and the graphics were still in full-blown fail mode, BUT he won the crowd, and my hat is off to Riley; that was an outstanding loop, and it keeps him in the Average. Score-wise, Morgan Grant of Didsbury cashed the big cheque with his time of 8.1-sec’s, Jesse Popescul of Glentworth, Sask., posted 8.6-sec’s for second place, and Logan Spady of Alliance posted 9.1 for third.
Breakaway Roping — I have no idea because of Internetus Interruptus (buffering regardless of swearing), but I’ll get back to you when the official results are posted. UPDATE: Kendal Pierson, 2.49 seconds, 2. Jenna Dallyn, 2.55, and third was Brittany Schuk with 2.92.
Bull Riding saw Griffin Smeltzer of Claresholm on top of the leader board with his score of 83.5-pts on Strandquist’s 518 CJB; second was Edgar Durazo of Alberta with 82.5-pts and third was Todd Chotowetz of Major, Sask with 82-pts.
Of note, Jared Parsonage of Maple Creek, Sask, scored 79-pts tonight for no money, but he is the only bull rider that has ridden all three of his bulls.
Tomorrow night, the 2021 Maple Leaf Circuit Champions will be decided!
Tune into FloRodeo at 7 pm Maple Creek Standard Time.