A pair of cowboys, a Ponoka native and one from Donalda, had a shot at the big money prize at the Calgary Stampede.
Both perennial favourites and former Canadian champions, Jake Vold made the final round in the bareback while Cody Cassidy was in the steer wrestling finale on July 15. However, in the end, neither one could lay their hands on the $100,000 cheque and the championship buckle.
Vold earned an automatic berth into Sunday’s finals after finished at the top of the pool standings from the first four days. His scores of 82.5, 86.5 and 88 got him $10,000 in earnings.
Vold followed that up with an 88.5 ride on Tootsie Roll in the Sunday afternoon round, tying him for top spot with Richie Champion — the cowboy that beat him for the Ponoka title two weeks earlier.
And the championship round that night, unfortunately for Vold, played out in eerily similar fashion with Champion winning on the same horse from Ponoka with almost the same score. Champion got Virgil for a 92.5 while Vold netted a 92 on Trail Dust.
As for Cassidy, he also automatically made it to Sunday as he ended up in third in his pool over the first four days. He got himself $9,500 by posting three runs of 4.0, 4.4 and a 14.4.
He made the championship top four round by getting in a run of 4.3 in the afternoon to grab the last spot by two-tenths of a second. However, his shot at the $100,000 went up like a cloud of dirt with a no time after he wasn’t able to wrangle his steer.
There were also a few other cowboys from the area that showed some good performances at the Stampede, even though only two of them made it as far as Sunday.
Meeting Creek’s Layton Green in the saddle bronc and Ponoka’s Jordan Hansen in the bull riding were able to make the Sunday afternoon, but missed out on their shot at the $100,000.
Green, whose $8,000 in his pool wasn’t enough to get him a berth Sunday, qualified as a wildcard with his second place 86.5 ride on July 14. However, his score of 84 fell short of the top four that would ride for the title.
Hansen also had to ride on Wildcard Saturday, after earning $5,000 on one ride in his pool. His 88 ride on Big Red got him a spot for Sunday afternoon, where his 84.5 wasn’t enough to make the championship round.
Another Ponoka bull rider, Zane Lambert, also had one ride in his pool good for $5,500 though he was bucked off in his wildcard ride.
Donalda’s Curtis Cassidy was the other area cowboy that competed. He finished his steer wrestling pool with $1,500 on four runs and had a 4.9 run on Wildcard Saturday, which left him outside the top two that moved on to Sunday.