CALGARY, Alberta – The Calgary Stampede has officially revealed the names of the 120 rodeo superstars who have been invited to compete at Stampede 2018, July 6-15. Among them is 23-year old Zeke Thurston of Big Valley, Alberta, who has his sights set on capturing a record breaking fourth straight Calgary Stampede Saddle Bronc Championship.
“Zeke Thurston has the opportunity to make an incredible mark in Stampede history, but it won’t be easy,” says Kynan Vine, Manager of Western Events. “He is just one of many incredible competitors from Canada, the United States and Brazil who will be riding for a share of more than $2 million in prize money at this year’s Calgary Stampede.”
Thurston would become the first contestant in any event to earn four-consecutive $100,000 checks and only the second saddle bronc rider ever to claim four Calgary Stampede titles. Marty Wood of Bowness, Alberta earned three PRCA World Championships in 1958, 1964 and 1966. Wood claimed his five Stampede titles in 1954, 1957, 1961, 1964 and 1965.
All six 2017 Calgary Stampede champions will return in 2018 to defend their titles at the world’s largest outdoor rodeo. They will be joined by the best-of-the-best in the world of rodeo, from the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association, Women’s Professional Rodeo Association, Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association and Professional Bull Riders.
Canadian rodeo fans will be excited to see the return of veterans such as local bull rider Scott Schiffner, a Canadian and Stampede Champion and brothers Curtis and Cody Cassidy of Donalda, Alberta. Canada is also well represented by talented young riders such as Jake Vold, Clay Elliott, Layton Green and Zane Lambert. In Ladies Barrel Racing, 2017 Canadian Champion Carman Pozzobon of B.C. joins Diane Skocdopole of Big Valley, Alberta as the lone Canadians in the group of 20 extremely skilled horsewomen.
“It’s great to see so much home grown talent,” says Justin Denis, Calgary Stampede Rodeo committee chair, adding “We call it the Greatest Outdoor Show on Earth for a reason. You will truly see the best in the world compete in Calgary over 10 days this July.”
This year features two less Canadian than were first announced in 2017. This year that number is 26, down six from the 32 in 2015 and 2016 and one less than the 27 in 2014. Due to injury replacements this number can still change.
The full 2018 Calgary Stampede Rodeo contestant list is below, and can also be found on CalgaryStampede.com.
Tickets are now on sale for the 2018 Calgary Stampede, and can be purchased at CalgaryStampede.com
Justin Berg – Marwayne, AB
If you are under the age of 21, have prior rodeo experience and would like to compete at the 2018 Calgary Stampede, consider the information in the graphic below!