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WNFR Bubble Update

by ProRodeo.com | Sep 20, 2016

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. – With just 12 days left in the 2016 regular season, every cowboy is jockeying for position to end up in the top 15 and qualify for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo presented by Polaris RANGER.

Here are some of men who made their move this past weekend:

  • After earning three checks in Pendleton, Guy Allen’s dream of returning to the Clem McSpadden National Finals Steer Roping for the first time since 2008, is a little bit closer to reality. Allen, who turned 56 earlier this month, moved up from 15th to 12th place in the WEATHER GUARD® PRCA World Standings and is looking to extend his record for most NFSR qualifications to 34. Brent Lewis won a round outright, and shared another round win to earn $8,669 in Pendleton and move within $1,819 of JoJo LeMond for the 15th and final qualifying spot in the NFSR.
  • And then there were six: Jesse Wright’s big win in Pendleton was worth $10,014 and bounced him from 18th to 11th in the saddle bronc riding world standings, while his nephew, Ryder Wright, advanced from 17th to 13th, forcing Tyrell Smith and two-time World Champion Taos Muncy out of the top 15. Muncy has been battling a strained left groin since initially injuring it at the Aug. 16-20 Caldwell (Idaho) Night Rodeo. There are now six members of the Wright clan of Milford, Utah, in position to reach the Wrangler NFR Dec. 1-10, with Ryder joining older brother, Rusty, and Jesse joining his brothers Jake and Cody, and brother-in-law, CoBurn Bradshaw. If this holds up, Cody, Rusty and Ryder will become the third set of father and two sons to qualify for the National Finals in the same year.
  • Billy Bugenig can take a big deep breath today. Fourteenth in the world standings entering the week and just $1,664 ahead of two-time World Champion Dean Gorsuch in 16th, Bugenig earned checks totaling $6,370 in Pendleton, Ore.; Albuquerque, N.M., and Abilene, Texas, to move up to 11th. Trevor Knowles kept his hold on the 15th spot in the standings with checks in Pendleton and St. George, Utah, but remains just $1,962 ahead of 16th-place Gorsuch.
  • Teddy Athan’s bid for a first Wrangler NFR berth in the bareback riding suffered a blow despite a win at the Sheriff’s PRCA Rodeo in San Bernardino, Calif., that paid him $1,774. Texan Richmond Champion pushed Athan down to 16th place in the world standings by earning three checks in Pendleton – including a sixth-place result in the average – and another in St. George, Utah, for finishing in a tie for fifth place. Bill Tutor, in the 17th spot, moved to within $400 of Athan with checks in Abilene, Texas; Tyler, Texas, and Texarkana, Ark.
  • There were two changes in the tie-down roping top 15, with Blane Cox and J.C. Malone supplanting WNFR veterans Adam Gray and Tyson Durfey (a total of 12 qualifications between them). Malone made the biggest jump, from 21st to 15th by tying for fifth in the average in Pendleton, finishing fourth in Albuquerque, N.M., and winning the rodeo in San Bernardino, Calif., with a 7.8-second run. Cox went from 16th to 13th by finishing fourth in the Pendleton average and winning another check in Abilene, Texas.
  • 2011 World Champion Bull Rider Shane Proctor had a win in Harrison, Ark., and Bayle Worden had one of his own in Tyler, Texas, effectively canceling each other out and remaining 15th and 16th in the world standings, respectively. Proctor widened his lead slightly, to $6,272.
  • The only change in the team roping standings came on the heading side, where Billy Bob Brown moved up from 16th to 14th on the strength of a tie for second place in St. George, Utah, and a seventh-place finish in Albuquerque, N.M. Dustin Egusquiza slid to 16th place, $829 behind Zac Small in 15th.

Courtesy of PRCA