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Parker Breding in Rare Company with Fourth RAM NCFR Title

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – There’s some kind of mojo for bull rider Parker Breding when he competes at the RAM National Circuit Finals Rodeo.

That trend continued at the 2021 RAM NCFR for the Edgar, Mont., cowboy.

Breding made history when he became the first bull rider to win four career RAM NCFR championships with an 86.5-point ride on Painted Pony Championship Rodeo’s Cocktail Diarrhea in the four-man sudden-death finals in Silver Spurs Arena, Saturday night.

“That’s really special to me,” Breding said about his four RAM NCFR crowns. “I haven’t done a whole lot of things any bigger than this. So far this rodeo kind of has been my small world title in a way. To be able to come here and get it done again is just amazing. I sure do love it here. They treat you really well, and this is one of my favorite rodeos by far.”

Breding has now won RAM NCFR titles in 2014, 2016, 2018 and 2021. He also won the semifinals earlier Saturday with an 88-point ride on Big Rafter Rodeo’s Silver Bullet.

“It’s hard to put into words what it means to get this done again,” said Breding, 28. “The way my week started this week things weren’t looking too good and I didn’t even think I made the semifinals until my traveling partner (Hawk Whitt) told me I did. He kind of withheld the information and let me walk around mad for a while and then he told me I was in there in the semis in the last spot. I had two awesome bulls, and I’m just extremely overwhelmed by this.”

Breding earned $13,006 for his RAM NCFR performance, which will give him a jolt in the PRCA | RAM World Standings. He arrived in Kissimmee 18th in the standings with $11,598.

“I haven’t won a whole lot since I won our Montana Circuit Finals Rodeo,” Breding said. “I needed to come here and win something, and it worked out better than I even expected in the finals. I just kept telling myself to nod my head and get out of the chute and just react to whatever the bull does, and that’s exactly what I was able to do. It ended up being an awesome little bull. I was pretty dang excited when I made the whistle.”

Breding, who qualified for the National Finals Rodeo in 2013, 2015 and 2018, had been hampered with a left knee injury since July 10, 2019. He suffered a torn anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) and posterior cruciate ligament (PCL) that day at the Calgary Stampede after he made the whistle riding Kesler Rodeo’s Late Nite Host.

“When I won tonight, I felt like I was able to overcome some things,” Breding said. “I was frustrated with how I had been riding and the injuries I have gone through the past couple of years, and it has put me out of the running to be anywhere. The moment I hit the ground (in the finals), I was ecstatic.”

Breding finished a career-best fourth in the world standings in 2018 with $241,732.

“I’m excited to make a run for the NFR again now that I’m healthy,” he said.

“This is a position I have never been in before,” Breding said this week. “The three NFRs I made, I was in it all year long and was never on the bubble. It’s interesting to sit back and see the results and wonder how these guys are going to push me out of there.”

Team ropers score nearly $20K each

Andrew Ward and Buddy Hawkins II stopped the clock in 6.3 seconds to win the RAM NCFR and secure nearly $20,000 in earnings.

The team ropers from the Prairie Circuit each scored $19,705, more than any other champion in Kissimmee over the weekend.

“All week we’ve just been trying to catch as fast as we could,” he said. “The last one was harder yet because there’s more pressure on you, but we are great at finishing and believing in ourselves.”

Hawkins and Ward were outside the top 40 in their respective events.

“This is the dream,” Hawkins said. “We love Kissimmee having this kind of event like this and adding this kind of money for us. This is what it’s about. We get to do this every day because of events like this.”

Aussie hoping title leads to NFR

Jake Finlay came to the U.S. to make the National Finals Rodeo. This might be the year that dream comes true.

The Australian who finished 20th last season and 17th in 2019 won his first RAM NCFR with an 88-point ride on Vold Rodeo’s Sun Glow. Finlay also won the semifinals, earning $14,249 at the RAM NCFR.

“This is huge,” he said. “I’ve been rodeoing in the Prairie Circuit for a lot of years, so it’s cool to take it back there.”

Guenthner win boost to season

Scott Guenthner had to balance time between the U.S. and Canada last season during the pandemic and didn’t get to rodeo much until the start of July.

That put the Canadian steer wrestler behind the eight ball. He missed qualifying for the 2020 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.

The 2021 season is looking a lot brighter for the three-time NFR qualifier.

Guenthner won the RAM NCFR for the first time Saturday night and took home $16,805.

“This is a big deal, especially with this counting for the world standings,” Guenthner said.

Champion building toward world title

Richmond Champion has his sights set on his first gold buckle this season.

Winning the RAM NCFR is a big step in that direction.

Champion won the event with an 87-point ride on Vold Rodeo’s Risky Mistress.

“I didn’t know a whole lot about that horse,” said Champion, who earned $15,010. “Tanner Aus had her at the Riggin Rally last week and she had stumbled, but he said she was really fun, and she was. It’s amazing to win this rodeo. This is a saddle you want in your house and a buckle you want on your belt. I’m super grateful.”

Herrin goes under eight seconds for title

Hunter Herrin had a strong NFR, winning a pair of rounds and using it to finish fourth in the world standings.

The Prairie Circuit tie-down roper now has a RAM NCFR title to put toward a possible world title this season.

Herrin won the event in 7.8 seconds, earning $18,627 over the weekend.

“This is the first time I’ve won this,” he said. “Here and San Angelo are the biggest licks before the summer, and it feels good to get a good win here. I didn’t make a very good run in the finals, if I’m going to be honest, but things worked out in my favor.”

Herrin was riding his horse Rambo.

“There are some horses better than Rambo, but for me, he’s just special,” Herrin said.

Morgan gets Kiss of victory

Shelley Morgan couldn’t go away from what worked.

The barrel racer from the Texas Circuit stuck with her horse Kiss and notched the win with a time of 14.82 seconds. Kiss also led Morgan to the semifinals win.

“I decided she was the one that got me this far, so she deserved it,” said Morgan, who earned $16,372 over the weekend. “This is so exciting. This is my first time (winning this). Kiss means the world to me. She has no idea what she means to me. She makes it so easy.”

Stock of the RAM NCFR

Big Rafter Rodeo’s Resistol’s Wild Valley was the bareback horse of the RAM NCFR.

The saddle bronc of the event was Hi Lo Pro Rodeo’s Toma Jo.

Big Rafter’s Line Drive was the bull of the RAM NCFR.

Texas Circuit rallies

The Texas Circuit came from behind to win the team title at the RAM NCFR. Barely.

By less than $300, Texas held off the Prairie Circuit, earning $91,809.

Winning the title earned more than bragging rights. The circuit that wins the team competition gets a $500 bonus for each athlete from that circuit competing at the finals.

Complete team circuit standings

Place Circuit Total
1 Texas $91,809
2 Prairie $91,514
3 Wilderness $70,191
4 Columbia River $65,341
5 Southeastern $61,401
6 Montana $49,296
7 Turquoise $43,475
8 Great Lakes $38,431
9 Badlands $31,634
10 Mountain States $28,357
11 California $9,796
12 Maple Leaf $7,632

 
Courtesy of PRCA

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