Rough Stock Events – Bareback, Saddle Bronc and Bull Riding:
Cheyenne Frontier Days has been especially good for two of today’s saddle bronc riders. Last year, the reigning world champion Jacobs Crawley won the championship here and $16,480. The year before that, Bradley Harter earned $10,018 and gave the buckle to his father. They are both riding here today, heading to Utah for another rodeo tonight and will be back for their second-round competition on Sunday.
Jacobs was last year’s reserve champion in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association and is after his second gold buckle. He leads the world standings by nearly $50,000 and hopes to increase that here. His brother Sterling Crawley will also compete today and is in 10th place in the world.
Bareback rider Orin Larsen used the money that he won as the reigning CFD champion bareback rider to qualify for his second National Finals rodeo (NFR). Joel Schlegel has already had success at Frontier Park this year. He won the Cinch Shoot-Out on opening day and is hoping to have the same success at the rodeo. The native of Colorado competes in the Mountain States Circuit, which includes Cheyenne, so any money he wins would count towards circuit standings as well as world standings.
Last year’s bull riding champion will be trying to win back-to-back titles. Roscoe Jarboe used the money he won here in 2016 to qualify for his first NFR. He is currently fifth in the world standings and is looking good for another trip to Las Vegas to compete at rodeo’s championships.
Bull riding world standings leader Garrett Smith also knows what it is like to get money here as well. He shared the first-round win here last year and wants a buckle from the “Daddy of ‘em All” as bad as anybody. Boudreaux Campbell will be riding in the big arena here for the first time today. He is leading the rookie of the year standings and is just outside the top 15 at 17th.
Douglas Duncan will attempt to ride his third bull at Frontier Park today. He rode two yesterday at the Cinch Shoot-Out to earn $10,000. Duncan is a former NFR qualifier and was the 2008 rookie of the year in the PRCA. He has also qualified for the PBR World Finals
Timed Events – Steer Wrestling, Team Roping, Tie-Down Roping and Barrel Racing:
An all-around contender, Jace Melvin, will compete in steer wrestling and tie-down roping today. Jace was the 2015 all around rookie of the year and is 45th in the world steer wrestling standings today. A big win here could give him a shot at his first Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
Dean Finnerty has run more steers in this arena than any of today’s competitors. Finnerty is a native of the Cowboy State and has been competing here for 29 years, so he has run 58 steers in this arena. The Wheatland resident is hoping to make it at least 30 years. That would mean two more steers in 2018.
Chance Kelton won the steer roping here in 2010, so he knows how to handle a rope. The former NFR team roper is back in the heading box today. Clint Harry, who has made a business out of selling roping horses, will do the heeling. Bobby Harris may have Highmore, S.D., behind his name, but he actually grew up in Wyoming. He tied for the team roping in 2010 in one of the most memorable wins in his illustrious career.
Jerome Schneeberger showed all the youngsters just how to rope and tie a calf last year at the age of 39 when he won the CFD tie-down roping title. He is back today and hoping for a repeat. The 11-time NFR qualifier will be up against two Wyoming natives, Joe James and Stuart Hoar.
Today’s barrel racers have some time to make up to have a chance of qualifying for the Championship Finals on July 30. All the barrel racers competed last Monday in the first round. Then the 96 with the fastest times advanced to a progressive round which will be held during the performances. They are set up so that most of the fastest times will run the end of next week. However, there are still some stars here today. Watch for Michele McLeod who has qualified for the NFR four times. She is currently 37th in the world standings and has taken time to help her daughter Lindsay who qualified for the College National Finals Rodeo in Casper in June.