Monday Notebook: Kaycee Feild Wins in Darby, Legends Shine in Arkansas and More
BY BRETT NIERENGARTEN @PRORODEOBRETT
For what will be the final time until the end of September, There were zero PRCA Playoff Series Rodeos over the weekend. However, that doesn’t mean there wasn’t still money to be made.
The Darby Xtreme Bareback Riding had a purse of more than $50,000, making it the largest ever for a standalone bareback riding and six more rodeos - Old Fort Days, Santa Maria Elks, Elizabeth Stampede, Durant, Mt. Pleasant, Pioneer Days and Crossett Riding Club - all paid at least $70,000.
This is your final warning to digest what has happened so far in the PRCA, because for the next 100+ days, things start moving awfully quick. Next thing you know, June will become December.
So, let’s get into it.
- Kaycee Feild won more than $13,000 for his first place finish at the Darby Xtreme Bareback Riding (Montana). The event’s $50,000 total payoff in was the biggest ever for a standalone bareback riding event and arguably the best bareback rider of all time took the biggest piece of the pie. Feild was 93.5 points in the Short Round, which made up more than $12,000 of the money he earned there. Feild also won the bareback riding event in Darby in 2021. In 2022, Rocker Steiner set a World Record with 95 points.
- There were six rides of 90 points or more in the Short Round in Darby. Needless to say, it was a thrilling event from top to bottom. The six cowboys who went 90 included every cowboy in the Top 4 - Leighton Berry, Keenan Hayes, Rocker Steiner and Feild - as well as Cole Reiner, who took second with 91 points, and Shane O’Connell. In addition to the six 90-point rides, there were three more that were 88 or better and all 12 cowboys in the Short Round were at least 83 points.
- Legends JB Mauney and Wade Sundell both won the Crossett Riding Club Rodeo. Mauney was 88.5 points on Pete Carr’s Ice Strom and Sundell was 88 on Pete Carr’s No. 764. Both cowboys won the rodeo by at least four points.
- Dating back to April 26, steer wrestler Tyler Waguespack has pulled a check on 9 of his last 11 runs. The reigning World Champion has been on fire lately and culminated in wins over the weekend at the Mt. Pleasant Rodeo (Texas) and Old Fort Days (Arkansas). In those 11 runs, three have been 4 seconds or faster and nine have been 4.5 or faster. Waguespack is currently No. 3 in the PRCA World Standings.
- The Wright family claimed 5 of the Top 7 spots in the saddle bronc riding at the Santa Maria Elks Rodeo. The blue shirts took over Southern California and combined to make $6,265 of the $9,080 paid out in the saddle bronc riding. The best of the bunch was probably the one you’ve heard the last about, Stu. The rookie was 88.5 points to best nephew Stetson by a half-point. Ryder was fifth with 85, Rusty was sixth with 83.5 and Statler was seventh with 83. Stetson also won the bull riding in Santa Maria.
- Reigning NFR Average Champions Tanner Tomlinson/Patrick Smith made their fastest run of the year to win the Old Fort Days. The pair was the second-to-last in the final performance and logged a 3.7-second run to win by four tenths over Justin Johnson/Kaden Graves. This weekend was the first time the team competed together since April 16.
- Bareback rider Kade Sonnier won two Arkansas rodeos over the weekend. The cajun cowboy was shared the win at the Old Fort Days with reigning World Champion Jess Pope and had the top spot all to himself in Crossett with 87 points on Ragin’ River of Pete Carr Pro Rodeo. The two wins paid him just over $4,000 combined and he is now No. 7 in the PRCA World Standings
- Six bareback riders were marked 86.5 points or higher at the Elizabeth Stampede Rodeo. Montana wasn’t the only place to find good bareback riding over the weekend. Rocker Steiner took first in another star-studded event that saw him Leighton Berry, Cole Reiner and Keenan Hayes all marked 88 or higher. For comparison, last year’s bareback riding at the Elizabeth Stampede had just two rides of 86.5 or more.
- There are three PRCA Playoff Rodeos coming to The Cowboy Channel this coming week. While the Summer Run unofficially begins in Reno on June 15, we get our first taste of what a truly packed PRCA weekend is like this coming week. On Tuesday, the Parker County Sheriff’s Posse Frontier Days (Texas) begin sand on Wednesday, the Sisters Rodeo (Oregon) and Woodward Elks Rodeo (Oklahoma) kick off. Following the conclusion of those three rodeos, we will have completed one-third of the PRCA Playoff Rodeo schedule, meaning that 40 of the highest-paying rodeos in the country are still to come this summer.