Making his Mark

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Tie-down roper Keely Bonnett had a new entry on his “to-do” list Monday morning.

“I’m actually buying my (pro) card today,” confirmed the 18 year-old.

Bonnett easily filled his CPRA semi-pro card with a $2,140 cheque from Stavely, AB, after his 7.8-second winning run last Friday night.

“I drew a really good calf. I was the last guy out so I got to see a bunch of runs. I went when I thought it was the right time, had a great start, got him roped fast and he tied great. It was awesome.”

Underneath Bonnett was his trusty, 11-year-old sorrel, Wimpy, a horse the Ponoka, AB cowboy trained himself.

“That’s my fastest run so far. I was in shock and just crossed my fingers hoping it would hold up through the weekend.”

Bonnett’s time, which was a tenth of a second better than that posted by Dean Edge the night before, did hold up through the final performance Saturday night and gave the grade 12 student the second largest cheque of the weekend.

“I go to school in August in (Hobbs) New Mexico so hopefully I can get to as many as I can and see how it turns out by the time I leave.”

With the win, Bonnett joins a handful of other young ropers atop the Canadian Pro Rodeo standings. 19 year-old, Kyle Lucas and Logan Bird, who just turned 20 last week, lead the way while rookie, Kyle Foden is also well inside the top ten.

It’s been 13 years since Shellee Shaw last competed at the Canadian Finals Rodeo. But the Cardston, AB barrel racer appears ready to push for a return to Edmonton this fall. Shaw posted a time of 13.427 to win the Stavely stop. The victory was worth $1,727 and unofficially vaults the 5-time CFR qualifier into the number two spot in the Canadian standings.

“I’m hoping for a good year,” says Shaw, who’s riding an 8-year-old mare called Kita. “I’ve been training her for the last seven years. We had a good start last year then she got hurt and then I got hurt so the year was not so good.”

Four-time Canadian All-Around champion, Kyle Thomson has served notice he wants back in the race. Thomson, who missed the CFR for the first time since 2007, grabbed cheques from both ends of the Stavely arena. The 36 year-old won $2,094 for a three-way split of 4th in the saddle bronc riding and a 3rd place finish in the steer wrestling.

A couple of Saskatchewan cowboys took home some big cheques from Stavely. Vanscoy’s Dustin Walker won the bulldogging with a 3.9-second run that paid $2,162 while Dakota Buttar of Kindersley topped the bullriding with an 86.5-point ride to earn $1,547. Team ropers, Taylor Brower and Tel Flewelling won their second rodeo of season with a 5.3-second trip that paid each of them $1,459 while Delano Kjos and Sam Kelts split the bronc riding with 81’s to win $1,459 each and R.C. Landingham and Dillon Bilton split the bareback title with 82’s to take home $1,275 apiece.

Next up on the Pro Rodeo Canada schedule is a long weekend swing through BC with stops in Luxton and Falkland from May 17-19.

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