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Cinch Spring Thaw brings hundreds to Ponoka

Thousands of dollars in prize money was handed out at the annual timed rodeo event challenge
Breakaway roper Taylor Smith knows she has to move quick to ensure a chance at prize money.

Hundreds of rodeo athletes converged on the Calnash Ag Event Centre for the annual Cinch Spring Thaw Timed Event Challenge.

The three-day event brought timed event athletes to Ponoka, which ended up awarding thousands of dollars in prize money, explained organizer Trevor Jones.

On Sunday, March 25 alone there were 800 teams entered into the team roping challenge and while results weren’t available at press time, Jones says they handed out $75,000 in prize money. Along with the cash, the event dished out six trophy saddles in Sunday’s team roping.

Couple that with a busy Friday bringing barrel racing and then the full timed events on the Saturday, it made for one busy weekend.

This was the sixth year of the challenge, which has seen growth year over year. Jones usually hosts a supper for all the competitors and this year there was over 250 people in attendance.

“When we first started it, we had 50 people,” said Jones, adding that athletes are now staying for the entire weekend of rodeo.

Jones says he’s grateful to the many sponsors who have helped the challenge grow and he looks forward to next year.

Cinch Spring Thaw Timed Event Challenge Saturday results:

• Tie down roping average: Blake Williamson, $1,440; Steele Depaoli, $1,080; Tyler Popescul, $720

• Breakaway results average: Denim Ross, $520; Lawrie Saunders, $390; Taylor Smith, $260

• Steer wrestling average: Ben Ramey, $1,050; Blake Gagnon, $788; Brendan Laye, $525

• Barrels 1D: Rylee Shields on Feeling Dirty, $646; Colby Gilbert on Sally, $485; Kaylee Anderson on Famous Hart, $323

• Barrels 2D: Jessy Mathieu on Jet n Up, $646; Jessica Kuchar on Lightning Asset, $485; Shayna Jones on Snap, $323

• Barrels 3D: Kristie Ward on Jerry, $888; Kayla Dueck on JD Dats Otto Matic, $727

• Youth barrels: Pyper Lillico on Indy, $287; Harleigh Henderson on Cash on Spot, $246; Pyper Lillico on Jessie, $195

• Team roping average: Clint Buhler and Brett McCarroll, $2,808 total; Denver Johnson and Tristan Woolsey $2,106 total; Colt Cornet and Stacy Cornet, $1,404 total.