Elite Rodeo Athletes Premier Tour Stop Number 9 Packs the House at Kamatso Equipment Days of 47 Rodeo in Salt Lake City
BOERNE, TX (July 2016) – Rodeo fans filled Vivint Smart Home Arena July 22 to watch the biggest names in rodeo go head to head during Elite Rodeo Athletes Premier Tour Stop No. 9 – Kamatso Equipment Days of 47 Rodeo in Salt Lake City. Earlier this year, the event which is Utah’s oldest rodeo and one of the premier rodeos in the nation, made a bold move to provide their fans a new high-stakes, high-entertainment competition through a new partnership with Elite Rodeo Athletes (ERA).
The all-star rodeo began with an 85.5 point ride by Neil Holmes riding bull, Magical, from Diamond G Rodeos. A significant win for the Houston bull rider, who returned to the tour after the unexpected loss of his father right before the Albuquerque, New Mexico tour stop. Oregon bull rider, Cody Campbell, still dominates the tour standings during the Championship Race to Dallas with an 125 point lead.
Robertsdale, Alabama steer wrestler, Kyle Irwin threw his steer in a quick 3.69 seconds to secure a tour stop No. 9 win and when asked about his run he said, “I knew I had a good chance, but nobody ever plans on being that fast, you just go wanting to do the best you can and execute the best you can and it worked out.” Irwin moved up in the world championship standings last night, but the top spot now belongs to Stockton Graves, Alva, Oklahoma, with a 262 point lead over second place Tyler Pearson.
The team roping was the most talked about event of the night, with another epic battle between teams Clay Tryan and Jade Corkill, and Derrick Begay and Clay O’Brien Cooper. The victory went to three-time world champions, Tryan and Corkill with 3.42 followed closely by Begay and seven-time world champion, Cooper’s 3.81. The rest of the field proved to be just as tough with Kaleb Driggers and Junior Nogueira also turning in a 3-second run for third place.
Isaac Diaz from Desdemona, Texas, proved consistency pays off when he held onto first place in the world championship standings after his 86 point win on Burnt Riner of Big Bend Rodeo Company. Last night was his first tour victory, but Diaz has been to the tour pay window many times, placing at almost every tour stop so far. He is followed closely by Wade Sundell, who won second last night with an 85.5 ride and is just 100 points behind Diaz in the ERA World Championship standings.
World champion barrel racer and newlywed, Callie Duperier Apffel, overcame her past tour difficulties with a 13.4-second run putting her on top of the leaderboard in Salt Lake City. When asked what she would say to young girls starting out she said, “I would say never give up, I started pretty late … I started when I was 13 and I just kept pushing to try and be the best.” Tour stop No. 9 also saw an upset in the barrel racing leaderboard with Lisa Lockhart taking over Ashley Schafer’s long-time top spot in the standings.
Fresh off of his Calgary Stampede win, world champion, Shane Hanchey, is on a roll taking home another win with a 7.10 run. Hanchey commented about what he enjoys most about the level of competition during each ERA event, “In a head to head type deal it really shows you what you are made of.” He continues to increase his lead in the world championship standings, now 200 points in front of three-time world champion, Tuf Cooper.
The bareback riding closed out the night with Ryan Gray from Cheney, Washington, claiming his first ever tour win with a 86.5 point ride on James Bond from Big Bend Rodeo Company. The top place in the Championship Race to Dallas is still held by four-time world champion, Bobby Mote.
ERA back numbers [July 23-24, 2016] featured a blue stripe in a show of appreciation for America’s police officers who risk their lives to protect and preserve our freedoms every day. ERA athletes wanted to show that they “Back the Blue.”
Article provided courtesy Elite Rodeo Athletes. Images provided by Andrea Kaus Photos.