Curtis Cassidy. PRCA photo by James Phifer.
LAS VEGAS, Nevada — He’s a 20-year pro, a 12-time Canadian Champion and a six-time Wrangler NFR Qualifier. He’s done almost everything there can be done in the sport of professional rodeo but one title remains.
The PRCA’s World Championship. The last Canadian to win it was Lee Graves in 2009. Today, after his first round win at the 60th edition of the WNFR, Curtis Cassidy (Donalda, Alberta) is back to ranking No. 1 on the planet. Fellow Canadian Scott Guenthner (Provost, Alberta) is No. 2.
“I’m not worrying about the standings right now,” Cassidy said. “It’s 10 one-headers here and you have to win as much money as you can every night because you don’t know what’s going to happen next.”
On Sunday, Cassidy clocked a 3.6, giving Canada back-to-back wins in consecutive rounds after Guenthner won on Saturday for a 3.3.
“Will Lummus made a good run on that steer in Round 1 and that steer left and ran good,” Cassidy said. “He was everything you could want for in a steer.”
Both Cassidy and Guenthner are riding Cassidy’s horse Tyson.
“I don’t know if my horse Tyson got sick the first night but Scott and I didn’t catch either one of our steers and the horse had a bad night,” Cassidy said. “I had a lot of anxiety over it that first night because five of us rode that horse at the Canadian Finals and he was clutch every night.”
— Ted Stovin (@TedStovin) December 10, 2018
The first place money is $26,231 moving Cassidy’s earnings to $157,894, over $9,000 ahead of Guenthner, who took fifth on Sunday with a time of 4.1 for $6,769. Of the top 4 ranked bulldogers in the PRCA, No. 4 Ty Erickson is best in the aggregate at No. 7.
British Columbia’s Carman Pozzobon broke the ice in Round 4. She and horse Ripp made the rounds in a 13.76 for sixth and $4,231. Also, the consistency has landed her in a split of fourth in the aggregate so far.
In the bronc riding, both Zeke Thurston (Big Valley, Alberta) and Clay Elliott (Nanton, Alberta) were bucked off. Despite the no scores, only five bronc rides were eight seconds long so they rank No. 6 and split No. 7 in the aggregate to date. Ryder Wright was two points off the round win at 85 points in Tiger Warrior from the Calgary Stampede for $15,654.
Orin Larsen (Inglis, Manitoba) rode Scarlet Lady for 83 points but was a point and a half out of a payday. He’s 11th in the aggregate and fifth in the world today.
In the bull riding, a pair of Outlaw Buckers bulls bucked off their counterparts. Nickel Package dispatched Chase Dougherty and Red Pheasant threw off Jeff Askey.
Money won on Canadian bucking stock at the 2018 Wrangler NFR: $184,886
Money won by Canadians at the 2018 Wrangler NFR: $140,665 plus $60,000 in qualification earnings.
Round 5 of the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo takes place on Monday December 10th, 2018 at the Thomas & Mack Centre starting at 6:45pm Pacific. To follow along, watch live at ProRodeoTV.com, listen live at ProRodeoLive.com. Live scoring is also available courtesy of the Wrangler Network.