By Ann Bleiker with modification from Barrel Horse News
With the official close July 6 of the 2020 Fourth of July run, known in the rodeo world as Cowboy/Cowgirl Christmas, Women’s Professional Rodeo Association barrel racer Jill Wilson found her name atop the earnings leaderboard for the weeklong events.
Although this year’s run featured less rodeos due to COVID-19 cancellations, the Snyder, Texas, cowgirl made the most of it and pulled checks in Cody, Wyoming; Oakley City, Utah; and Big Fork, Montana. Although she didn’t win the rodeo, Wilson’s largest check for the week came from the Cody Stampede, where she finished second to WPRA rookie and 2018 Barrel Futurities of America World Champion Paige Jones. Jill Wilson and Lean Mean Blue Dean (2005 gelding, Dean Miracle x Luv Her Winner x Runaway Winner) finished in a time of 17.20 seconds, while Jones and her 6-year-old BFA champion High Cotton Lane (The Goodbye Lane x HMB Soon Tobe Famous x Dash Ta Fame) stopped the clock in 17.10. Jones picked up her biggest check of the week with $8,387.
Wilson finished atop the leaderboard in both Oakley City, Utah, and Big Fork, Montana. In Oakley City, she stopped the clock in 16.91 to squeeze past two-time WPRA World Champion Barrel Racer and current No. 1-ranked Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi’s 17.00 on Ima Famous Babe (Dash Ta Fame x Streakin Six Babe x Streakin Six). Wilson picked up $4,905, while Pozzi Tonozzi added $3,924 to extend her lead in the world standings. Wilson closed out her Fourth of July run in Big Fork, Montana, stopping the clock in 17.28 seconds to edge Abby Phillips and Crown Ta Fame (Crownroyal Frenchman x Cash Ta Fame x Dash Ta Fame), who stopped the clock in 17.35. Wilson added $2,040, bringing her overall total for the week to a whopping $13,654.
Three-time National Finals Rodeo qualifier Cheyenne Wimberley was second in overall money with $10,154. Wimberley of Stephenville, Texas, won money in Prescott, Arizona ($2,612); Mandan, North Dakota ($5,659); Mobridge, South Dakota ($1,765); and Killdeer, North Dakota ($118); proving that every little bit counts on the rodeo road. Wimberley won Mandan, North Dakota, with a time of 15.30 seconds on Dr. Steve Hurlbert’s 6-year-old gelding Royal Blue Fame (Dash Ta Fame x Eyes Are Blue x Royal Blue Chew Chew).
2019 Wrangler NFR qualifier Dona Kay Rule rounded out the top three money earners for the week with $9,210. Rule of Minco, Oklahoma, pulled checks in Cody, Wyoming ($210); Belle Fourche, South Dakota ($5,205); Prescott, Arizona ($2,239); and Mandan, North Dakota ($1,556); all aboard her outstanding gelding High Valor (Valiant Hero x Rare High x Rare Form).
Shelby Boisjoli Atop Cowgirl Christmas Breakaway Roping Standings
As reported on July 6, Canadian cowgirl Shelby Boisjoli took home the most money during the inaugural WPRA breakaway roping Cowgirl Christmas. Boisjoli of Langdon, Alberta, now making her home in Stephenville, Texas, added $9,198 to her 2020 total. She had her best showing in Killdeer, North Dakota, stopping the clock in 1.9 seconds to earn $4,973 for a second-place finish behind Amanda Hodges. She was third behind world champions Jackie Crawford and Lari Dee Guy, respectively, in Mobridge, South Dakota, with a time of 2.1 seconds for $1,613 and was fourth in Cody, Wyoming, with a time of 2.3 seconds to add another $2,612. Boisjoli is now ranked sixth in the WPRA ProRodeo Breakaway Roping world standings.
Full coverage of Cowgirl Christmas will be available in the August 2020 issue of the WPRA News.
Top 5 Cowgirl Christmas Barrel Racers
Jill Wilson $13,654
Cheyenne Wimberley $10,154
Dona Kay Rule $9,210
Megan Swint $8,924
Paige Jones $8,387
Top 5 Cowgirl Christmas Breakaway Ropers
Shelby Boisjoli $9,198
Katie Mundorf $8,648
Amanda Hodges $5,718
Kayelen Helton $4,636
Cora Borman $4,308