Gold Night is the opening act and the national anthem will be performed by Victoria Matlock. This is Wrangler National Patriot Night and the performance sponsor is Wrangler.
WRANGLER NFR LIVE ON TELEVISION, RADIO AND INTERNET
Tonight’s Wrangler NFR presented by Polaris RANGER will be televised live and in HD on CBS Sports Net (DISH Network channel 158 and DirecTV channel 221) from 7-10 p.m. PT with Jeff Medders and Butch Knowles announcing, Joe Beaver and Don Gay providing commentary, Suzanne Alexander hosting the pre-show and Kadee Coffman as the sideline reporter. All 10 performances of the 2015 Wrangler NFR will be available live with a video-on-demand option via pay-per-view exclusively in Canada, Brazil, Mexico and Australia. ProRodeo Live is airing coverage on a network of radio stations, including Rural Radio, and also online at www.prorodeolive.com with Steve Kenyon as the lead announcer.
DEPARTMENT OF RECORDS
With a win in the team roping Friday night and a fifth-place check in tie-down roping, Trevor Brazile became the first ProRodeo cowboy to surpass $6 million in career earnings; he enters Round 10 with $6,029,513. His season total stands at $469,369 which is third best on the all-time list (he has the top nine spots) and he can break his single-season record of $507,921 (2010) merely by holding his position in the average races (second in the tie-down roping and seventh in team roping). The big challenge on tonight’s agenda is holding onto his lead in the tie-down roping which would allow Brazile to complete a record-tying third Triple Crown; he already has the all-around and steer roping gold buckles tucked away to bring his total to 23. Jim Shoulders (1956-58) is the only other cowboy to win three world championships in the same year three times. The biggest threat to the final leg of Brazile’s Triple Crown is fellow Texan Caleb Smidt, who is $23,355 behind in the world standings (in fifth place), but leads the average race where first place pays $67,269. If Brazile holds on to second place in the average standings he will receive a check for $54,577. That would leave him with a $10,662 edge on Smidt and that would leave the gold buckle outcome to where the two men finish in Round 10. Brazile needs to finish within two spots of Smidt to hold on. If Smidt wins Round 10, Brazile would have to finish at least third to hold the lead and win by $85. If Smidt finishes second tonight then Brazile would have to finish fourth. Of course, if both Brazile and Smidt should falter, Matt Shiozawa (fourth in the world, fourth in the average standings) could sneak in for his first world championship.
Brazile won’t be alone in chasing down records tonight. The season and WNFR earnings records are within reach in nearly every event. For example? If bareback rider Kaycee Field wins Round 10 and at least holds onto third in the average he will break the single-season record of $319,986 he set in 2011. He could max out tonight with $329,848. Both Feild and Steven Peebles are within reach of the WNFR bareback riding earnings record of 179,327 that Feild set in 2011.
With CoBurn Bradshaw having mathematically eliminated Canada’s Zeke Thurston to become the PRCA Resistol Saddle Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year on Friday night, the only rookie race still open to question is the barrel racing and that is just barely open. Jackie Ganter of Abilene, Texas, is 13th in the world standings, but second in the average to Callie duPerier. If Ganter merely completes the cloverleaf pattern cleanly tonight, she will capture the WPRA rookie award over Vickie Carter of Richfield, Utah.
NEWS & NOTES
The bareback riding championship is a battle between Kaycee Feild and Steven Peebles. Field drew Frontier Rodeo’s Times Up, who carried Winn Ratliff to an 82-point ride to place fourth in Round 4. Bill Tutor had an 88-point ride on Times Up to win the Buc Days Pro Rodeo April 26 in Corpus Christi, Texas. Peebles also has a good draw in Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Good Time Charlie, a horse which was reserve WNFR champion in 2012 and has helped cowboys place in seven go-rounds in past NFRs. Seth Hardwick, who is third in the bareback riding world standings and second in the average, drew Burch Rodeo’s Jim Dandy, a horse Tim O’Connell had an 81-point ride on in Round 5. Saddle bronc rider Jacobs Crawley takes aim at his first gold buckle tonight and he has a good draw – Pete Carr’s Classic Pro Rodeo’s Big Tex, who was the 2010 Bareback Horse of the Year and has been to four straight WNFRs in saddle bronc riding. Rookie CoBurn Bradshaw, who is second in the average, drew Brookman-Hyland Rodeo’s Kid Rock. Wade Sundell, also is in the hunt, drew Beutler & Sons’ Wound Up, a horse Bradshaw won Round 5 on with a 90-point ride. Isaac Diaz is also in the mix and he gets Burch Rodeo’s Lunatic From Hell. Cody DeMoss was fourth on that horse in Round 5 with an 85.5-point ride. Rusty Wright, who has won three rounds, will try to make it four and keep his chances alive aboard Rafter G Rodeo’s Low Bucks. In bull riding, Sage Kimzey, who clinched his second straight world championship in Round 9, drew Smith Harper & Morgan’s Priefert Sweep, a bull that Dustin Bowen failed to register a score on in Round 3. Bowen drew Frontier Rodeo’s Good Time Charlie, who has only been ridden twice in his last 20 outs.
Record times and scores for the 10th round of the WNFR:
Bareback riding: 91.5 points, Will Lowe, 2007 (equals arena record)
Steer wrestling: 3.3 seconds, Sid Steiner, 2002; Gabe Ledoux, 2012
Team Roping: 3.6 seconds, Chad Masters/Jade Corkill, 2011; Spencer Mitchell/Broc Cresta, 2011
Saddle bronc riding: 93 points, Billy Etbauer, 2004 (equals arena record)
Tie-down roping: 6.5 seconds, Cody Ohl, 2003 (also arena record)
Barrel racing: 13.57 seconds, Carlee Pierce, 2012
Bull riding: 96 points, Cody Hancock, 2001 (also arena record)
Courtesy of PRCA