CFR and All Around Races Tighten

RELEASE BY PRO RODEO CANADA

Photo courtesy of Billie-Jean Duff

With only a half-dozen rodeos left on the Pro Rodeo Canada schedule, every cheque becomes increasingly important, no matter how many zeroes may be attached to it. Barrel racer, Rene Leclercq couldn’t agree more.

“It’s very important for me to be winning right now because I’m right on the bubble,” offered the 21- year-old, who is in her third year on the pro rodeo trail. “Getting to the CFR has been a life long dream since I was a little girl. If I got there, it would mean the world to me.”

Leclercq picked up $1,175 for a rodeo-winning time of 12.528-seconds at the Okotoks Pro Rodeo in Okotoks, AB, this past weekend. That will keep the Holden, AB, cowgirl in 13th spot in the unofficial Pro Rodeo Canada standings. But the gap between herself and Saskatchewan’s Kareen Warren, who holds down the 12th and final Canadian Finals Rodeo qualifying spot, has shrunk to $1,600.

“My mare, Flirt, worked really awesome for me,” began Leclercq. “She really likes those tiny little pens. I think she’d like the set-up in Edmonton. She’s a great indoor horse.”

“I also started to run my other horse (7-year-old, Flit) for the first time. She was a little new to the game at the start but now she’s working really good for me, too. So it’s nice that I have the two of them.”

Among the other winners in Okotoks was bullrider, Ty Pozzobon, who not only grabbed a first place cheque worth $1,474, but also posted the high marked bull ride of the 2015 Pro Rodeo Canada season.

“That bull was named Bull of the CFR last year,” said Pozzobon of his draw, Proper Ripped from Vold Rodeo. “The quicker you get out of the chute, the better he’ll buck. He was alright so I just nodded and the end result was 92 points.”

The win boosts Pozzobon’s unofficial Pro Rodeo Canada earnings to $24,448, an impressive total given the Okotoks’ stop was just the Merritt, BC, cowboy’s 19th rodeo of the season.

“I had a bad head injury from the PBR Canada finals in Saskatoon last November,” revealed Pozzobon. “I won my first rodeo in Camrose in April and then I got hurt again and didn’t come back again until after the Grande Prairie weekend at the end of May.”

“I’ve had to go to neurologists and everything because I’ve had about 10 concussions since 2012 so they wanted to make sure everything was ok. The doctor made it seem like maybe I should find a new hobby. But bullriding is all I’ve ever known. We did come to the conclusion that I can’t take too many more hits like that.”

A small cheque for $357 for a 7th place, 9.8-second run in the tie-down roping in Okotoks may turn out to be the most important of the season for Ky Marshall. It’s Marshall’s 3rd roping cheque of the season and throws him into the Pro Rodeo Canada All-Around race. The reigning Canadian All- Around champ, who has already solidified a spot at the Canadian Finals Rodeo in Edmonton in November in the bareback riding, now joins Josh Harden as the only competitors in the running for the coveted award.

Other Okotoks’ champions included team ropers, Logan and Keely Bonnett (4.4-seconds, $1,295 each); tie-down roper, Kyle Lucas (7.7-seconds, $1,643); saddle bronc rider, Jim Berry (86.5-points on Vold Rodeo’s Pedro, $1,643); steer wrestlers, Tyler Willick and Layne Delemont (tie, 3.5-seconds, $1,435 each) and bareback riders, Dusty LaValley and Jake Vold (tie, 83-points on Vold Rodeo’s Mucho Dinero and Wildwood Flower respectively, $1,276 each).

Next up on the Pro Rodeo Canada schedule is the final Wrangler Canadian Pro Rodeo Tour stop at the IPE & Stampede in Armstrong, BC (Sept. 2-6) and the Nicola Valley Pro Rodeo in Merritt, BC (Sept. 5-6).

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