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Pro Rodeo

CANADA

INSIDER

DEEP IN THE HEART OF TEXAS PHOTO BY MIKE COPEMAN

Orin Larsen, who hails from Inglis, Man., clinched the Canadian Bareback title (and the Aggregate) with this 89.5-point ride on Calgary Stampede’s Z-51 Zulu Warrior at the 2019 CFR. Both Orin and Zulu have earned a berth at the 2020 National Finals Rodeo in Arlington, Texas, in December. Photo by Billie-Jean Duff

RODEOCANADA.COM cowboycountrymagazine.com

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Pro Rodeo Canada Insider

Good luck

PHOTO COURTESY ISTOCKPHOTO.COM/MARI_ART

to everyone in our upcoming 2021 pro rodeo season!

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Canadian Cowboy Country December 2020/January 2021


C.P.R.A.

Looking Ahead

November is traditionally Canadian Finals Rodeo month, and all of us would have loved to be heading to Red Deer for CFR ‘47. Unfortunately, that didn’t happen this year. Instead, we spent some time reflecting back on the wonderful CFR that 2019 brought us and looking ahead to the return of professional rodeo and the CFR in 2021. I want to offer special congratulations to the CPRA athletes, stock contractors and their four-legged partners. They will all soon be making their way to Arlington, Texas, for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. The CPRA competitors who will be at the WNFR in early December are current and former Canadian Champions Zeke Thurston, Orin Larsen, Shane Hanchey, Hunter Koch (who is teaming up with former Canadian Champ Kolton Schmidt in the team roping), Levi Simpson, Curtis Cassidy, Richmond Champion, Tuf Cooper, Tyson Durfey, Timber Moore, Taos Muncy, Paul Eaves and Lisa Lockhart. Closer to home, it’s exciting to see CPRA Committee Reps Shane Crouch and Lloyd Gray orchestrating a meeting of our rodeo committees. It will be great to see everyone get together and start planning for 2021. I’m sure some good ideas will come out of this meeting.

cowboycountrymagazine.com

We have also been in regular contact with Alberta health authorities and continue to work closely with them in planning for next year’s rodeo season. We’re all aware that we will have to make changes in how we do business from now on, but I am confident that we will overcome the challenges the pandemic has brought us. I believe that our existence depends on all of us being more creative if we want to continue to prosper. The Western way of life is very dear to us all, and we have to stick together to keep it going. See you down the rodeo trail,

Terry Cooke, President, CPRA

 For up-to-date information about the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association, check out our website at RodeoCanada.com. Follow us on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @prorodeocanada. We’re also on YouTube under RodeoCanada.

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Pro Rodeo Canada Insider

RODEO TREASURES HARD-WON HARDWARE By TERRI MASON

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WAS AT A BRANDING THIS SPRING AND TOOK THE PHOTOGRAPH OF DAN BLACK’S CLOVERDALE CHAMPIONSHIP SPURS WON IN 1999. THIS GOT ME THINKING. WE’VE ALL WATCHED THE AWARDING OF TROPHY BUCKLES, SADDLES AND THE LIKE IN HUNDREDS OF RODEO ARENAS ACROSS THE WEST,

BUT WE SELDOM GET A PEEK AT HOW THEY ARE DISPLAYED. SO I CONTACTED A FEW COMPETITORS, AND MANY OF THEM SENT IN PHOTOGRAPHS OF SOME OF THEIR HARD-WON TREASURES. THANKS TO EVERYONE WHO SENT ME PICTURES! HERE ARE SOME OF THE PLACES WHERE RODEO TREASURES ARE FOUND.

Mel Hyland | Valleyview, Alta. 1967, ’72, ’79, ’82 Canadian Champion Saddle Bronc rider; 1975 Canadian Champion Bareback rider; 1972, 1976 World Champion Saddle Bronc rider; 1981 CPRA Cowboy of the Year; 1996 inducted Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame; 1999 inducted B.C. Sports Hall of Fame; 1999 inducted Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, Colorado Springs; 2006 inducted National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum’s Rodeo Hall of Fame, Oklahoma City

PHOTOS BY MARJIE HYLAND

Mel Hyland with three championship saddles, including his two World Champion saddles, displayed on a pony wall in their living room

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Canadian Cowboy Country December 2020/January 2021


C.P.R.A.

Clayton Moore & Steffanie (Mather) Moore Pouce Coupe, B.C. 2013 Canadian Steer Wrestling Champion & 2014 Canadian Barrel Racing Champion, respectively The Moores' trophy wall in their B.C. cabin includes Steff's CFR halter, numerous buckles and trophy spurs from various rodeos, photos from the 2014 Grass Roots Finals, Pistol’s 2012 Steer Wrestling Horse of the Year halter, two champion headstalls from Coleman, Alta., and flowers from Steff’s wedding bouquet. Many of the couple’s championship saddles and hardware are on display at Vold, Jones & Vold Auction in Dawson Creek, B.C.

Brooke Wills Kamloops, B.C. 2019 Canadian Ladies Barrel Racing Champion

PHOTOS COURTESY BROOKE WILLS; STEFFANIE MOORE; NIKI FLUNDRA

LEFT: Brooke Wills’ two go-round buckles, her 2019 CFR Championship buckle, back number and photo ABOVE: Brooke’s Canadian Champion saddle flanks a fireplace adorned with some pro rodeo back numbers, and a table loaded with silver buckles earned by herself, her sisters and her dad

Dustin Flundra Pincher Creek, Alta. 2003, ’07, ’10 Canadian Saddle Bronc Champion; 2019 Guy Weadick Award; 2019 (Douglas Lake Ranch) CPRA Cowboy of the Year (bronze not in photo) Some of Dustin’s championship bronzes. The two bronzes on the outside are two of his three Canadian Saddle Bronc Champion awards, the bronze in the centre was awarded to him in 2019 by the Calgary Stampede — the prestigious Guy Weadick Award. cowboycountrymagazine.com

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Pro Rodeo Canada Insider

Dan Black Maple Creek, Sask. Five-time CFR qualifier, 1999, 2001 Cloverdale Saddle Bronc Champion

Morgan Grant & Gillian (Shields) Grant Carstairs, Alta. 2013, ’16, ’17 Canadian High Point Champion (Morgan) & 2013 Miss Rodeo Canada (Gillian) ABOVE TOP: Grant’s wall of photo memories ABOVE CENTRE: Big cheques, bronzes and a wealth of buckles earned by both of the Grants ABOVE BOTTOM: Close-up of the adorned mantel of buckles

Logan Bird Nanton, Alta. 2017 Canadian Tie-Down Roping Champion; 2016 and 2019 Canadian Tie-Down Roping Horse of the Year (Logan's horse, TJ) Logan’s 2017 Canadian Championship saddle

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Canadian Cowboy Country December 2020/January 2021

PHOTOS COURTESY GILLIAN GRANT; BECKY GUENTHNER; DAINES FAMILY; ROD AND SHELLEY HAY

Dan Black wearing his 1999 Cloverdale champion spurs to work at a branding


C.P.R.A.

Rod Hay Wildwood, Alta. Eight-time (1990, ’92, ’93, ’94, ’97, ’99, 2002, ’04) Canadian Saddle Bronc Champion, 2014 Cowboy of the Year TOP LEFT: A wealth of buckles and bronzes adorn his bar BOTTOM LEFT: Rod’s eight Canadian title buckles are framed separately RIGHT: Rod’s 2002 Olympic chaps, some of his championship saddles and photos

Duane Daines & Cheryl (Robson) Daines Innisfail, Alta. 1987, ’91, ’95 Canadian All-Around Champion (Duane), 1991 Canadian Saddle Bronc Champion (Duane), & 1988 Miss Rodeo Canada (Cheryl) TOP: Some of Duane’s back numbers, trophy saddles and bronzes BOTTOM: The CFR back number and Calgary photo of Duane and Cheryl's daughter, Sydney; on the wall is the front page of a newspaper featuring Duane winning the Stampede in 1990

cowboycountrymagazine.com

Scott Guenthner | Provost, Alta. 2018, ’19 Canadian Steer Wrestling Champion Top left bronze: 2015 Alberta Championship Series winner; Top right bronze: 2018 Alberta Championship Series winner. Cutty Sark Scotch whiskey John W. Jones Memorial Champion (California); Top shelf left, buckle: 2017 Montana Circuit Champion; right buckle: 2018 All American Pro Rodeo Finals Champion; Middle shelf: 2018 Canadian Steer Wrestling Champion buckle, watch and ring; 2017 NFR Go-Round winner buckle; Bottom shelf: 2019 Canadian Steer Wrestling Champion watch and ring (Scott wears the buckle), 2017 NFR contestant spurs and ring; 2015 CFR Go-Round winner buckle; 2018 NFR contestant spurs and ring; 2018 NFR Go-Round winner. 43


Pro Rodeo Canada Insider ROAD TO THE NFR

Texas-Style! CANADIANS AT NFR By TIM ELLIS

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EARLY 20 YEARS AGO, A YOUNG BULLDOGGER PUT THE SMALL ALBERTA VILLAGE OF DONALDA ON THE MAP BY QUALIFYING FOR HIS FIRST NATIONAL FINALS RODEO. NOW, AT AGE 42, CURTIS CASSIDY IS JOINING A SELECT FEW WHO HAVE COMPETED AT THE

FINALS IN THREE DIFFERENT DECADES.

“If I don’t do this, I’d have to get a real job,” quips Cassidy, who was 24 when he first made the trip to Las Vegas for the NFR. “That’s why I bear the hell down and make sure I’ve got good horses so I can win and keep doing this as long as I can.” “I remember that for years I was always the young guy at the CFR. Then, all of a sudden, I was the old guy. It happens fast.” 44

But don’t confuse old for “has-been.” “When you’re young, you’re more athletic and agile,” suggests Cassidy, who will be among a half-dozen NFR qualifiers above the age of 40. “As you get older as a steer wrestler, you get a lot stronger. “When you’re younger, you’re not as heavy or strong, so you have to have perfect technique and use better cattle to the fullest

of their potential. As you get bigger and stronger, you can make money on steers that aren’t as good.” At 26, team roper Kolton Schmidt is the youngest of the Canadian contingent competing for a World championship. "When I first made it, I was so young and naïve as to what it truly took to qualify,” begins Schmidt, who made his only other appearance at the NFR in 2016. “Now after the hardships and to grind through it, and kind of rebuild my career, it’s nice to see it.” The PRCA’s decision to move the Finals to Arlington, Texas, suits the Barrhead, Alta., native just fine. “It’s about an hour and forty minutes away,” confirms Schmidt, who now resides in Stephenville with his new bride, Katy. “Definitely will be weird not having the Vegas experience but, at this point in my career, they could have had it anywhere and I was going to be there.” Levi Simpson’s only other trip to the National Finals Rodeo was also in 2016.

Canadian Cowboy Country December 2020/January 2021

PHOTOS BY BILLIE-JEAN DUFF

Zeke Thurston on Calgary Stampede’s T-38 Timely Delivery, 2019 CFR

Levi Simpson, 2019 CFR


C.P.R.A.

Curtis Cassidy, 2019 CFR

Kolton Schmidt, 2019 CFR

Orin Larsen on Calgary Stampede’s S-83 Special Delivery, 2019 CFR

“It’s pretty exciting to get back there,” says Simpson, who won the World team roping heading championship that year. “It was harder this season to win.” “Through July and August, when normally there are 50-60 entries, there were 120 entries at every rodeo. And they were all one-headers, so it was extremely competitive.” The other World champion in the Canadian group is two-time and defending saddle bronc champ Zeke Thurston. “I think it was a little tougher to qualify this year than in other years,” echoes Thurston, who finished ninth in the regular season World bronc riding standings. “There was a lack of rodeos and a lack of money to be won. Then on top of that, you had every single guy entering the same rodeos.” The final member of the Canadian group is last year’s reserve World champion bareback rider, Orin Larsen, who hails from Inglis, Man., and is competing at his sixth consecutive NFR. c cowboycountrymagazine.com

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Profile for Tanner Young Publishing Group

Pro Rodeo Canada Insider Dec 2020/Jan 2021  

Pro Rodeo Canada Insider Dec 2020/Jan 2021