SALT LAKE CITY (July 24, 2019) – What a great night to cap off Utah’s Pioneer Day at the Komatsu Equipment Days of ‘47 Cowboy Games and Rodeo presented by Zions Bank in Salt Lake City on Wednesday night. A total of nine gold medals were handed out along with silver and bronze in each event as the rodeo came to a close in 2019.
Reigning world champion barrel racer Hailey Kinsel was the only defending champion to claim another gold medal and set two records – an arena record and the only contestant to win three gold medals from the Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo.
“It is definitely all Sister,” said Kinsel, of her great horse DM Sissy Hayday that she calls Sister. “She loves this arena and the format fits her. I am so proud of my horse. Every time I ask her to throw down in a pressure run she does. She tries so hard.”
Kinsel stopped the clock in a record setting time of 16.794 seconds on the final night to claim the back-to-back-to-back title in Salt Lake City. With it she also added another $50,000 to her bank account.
“It is such a blessing,” said Kinsel about winning her third gold medal. “My first two medals are on display at my parents’ house on the TV stand as I am not very good about putting holes in a wall but now that I have three maybe I can do something cool with them.”
Taking the silver and bronze for the first time in their career were Maggie Poloncic of Gillette, Wyo., with a 16.834 and Michelle Darling of Medord, Okla., with a 16.860.
A total of 288 competitors took their shot at a share of the over $1 million in prize money over the 5-day rodeo and a Gold, Silver or Bronze medals were awarded in the following events: bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, women’s breakaway roping, barrel racing and bull riding.
World Champion Zeke Thurston added a gold medal to his gold buckle after scoring 89 points on Bar T Rodeo’s Son of Sadie. Thurston of Big Valley, Alberta, just edged Cort Scheer of Elsmere, Neb., by one point. Scheer rode Bar T Rodeo’s Hell Boy for 88 points. In fact, Bar T had all three top horses on the night as Lefty Holman took bronze with an 87.5 on Bitter Dan.
Winning the inaugural breakaway roping gold medal was 16 year old Jordi Edens of Gatesville, Texas. Edens stopped the clock in a blistering fast time of 2.58 seconds to edge 18-time world champion Jackie Crawford for the title. Crawford finished in a time of 2.76 to win the silver and Nicole Baggerley-Sweazea of Las Cruces, N.M., took home the bronze in a time of 3.03 seconds.
The night began with fans and officials on the edge of their seats in the bareback riding. When the dust had settled and official scoring was reviewed seven-time Wrangler NFR qualifier Caleb Bennett recorded the highest score on the night with an 89 on Northcott-Macza’s Stevie Knicks, while Utah favorite and four-time world champion Kaycee Field tallied 88.25 points on Sankey Rodeo’s Sozo. Due to a technical scoring error resulting in a wrong order of finish initially being reported the committee opted to award both Bennett and Feild Gold medals for 2019. Orin Larsen and Clint Laye tied for third with 85.75 but Larsen received the bronze medal after having a higher spur ride on the night.
The Komatsu Equipment Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo presented by Zions Bank, is taking place at the $17.5 million state-of-the-art Days of ’47 Arena at the Utah State Fairpark, custom designed and built for rodeo. The venue—an outdoor arena located in the heart of Salt Lake City—features over 10,000 stadium-style seats.
For only the fifth time in the history of rodeo, riders had an opportunity to compete for Gold, Silver or Bronze Medals. The first two times were in conjunction with the Olympic Winter Games in Calgary (1988) and Salt Lake City (2002), when rodeo was part of the Cultural Olympiad and the other two times being the Days of ’47 Cowboy Games and Rodeo in 2017 and 2018. This was the first time for breakaway ropers as they were not part of the aforementioned events. The medals that were awarded at the Days of ‘47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo were produced by OC Tanner, the same company that made the Olympic medals for the champions of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games. For more information on the event visit www.daysof47cowboygames.com.
Results: - Performance 5 – July 24, 2019
Bareback riding: 1. Caleb Bennett, Corvallis, Mont., 89 points on Northcott-Macza Pro Rodeo’s Stevie Knicks, $50,000; 2. Kaycee Feild, Spanish Fork, Utah, 88.25, $25,000; 3. (tie) Orin Larsen, Gering, Neb., and Clint Laye, Cadogan, Alberta, 85.75, $9,000 each
Gold medalist: Caleb Bennett. Silver medalist: Kaycee Feild*. Bronze medalist: Orin Larsen**.
*Due to a technical scoring error resulting in a wrong order of finish initially being reported the committee opted to award both Bennett and Feild Gold medals for 2019
**tie-breaker: higher spur ride
Steer wrestling: 1. Matt Reeves, Cross Plains, Texas, 3.92 seconds, $50,000; 2. Dakota Eldridge, Elko, Nev., 4.22, $25,000; 3. Tyler Pearson, Atoka, Okla., 4.40, $12,000; 4. Justin Shaffer, Hallsville, Texas, 4.53, $6,000
Gold medalist: Matt Reeves. Silver medalist: Dakota Eldridge. Bronze medalist: Tyler Pearson
Team roping: 1. Ty Blasingame, Casper, Wyo./Kyle Lockett, Visalia, Calif., 5.35 seconds, $50,000 each; 2. Tanner Tomlinson, Angleton, Texas/Will Woodfin, Marshall, Texas, 5.98, $25,000; 3. Cory Clark, Jefferson, S.C./Douglas Rich, Herrick, Ill., 8.69, $12,000; 4. Riley Minor, Ellensburg, Wash./Brady Minor, Ellensburg, Wash., 9.75, $6,000
Gold medalist: Ty Blasingame/Kyle Lockett. Silver medalist: Tanner Tomlinson/Will Woodfin. Bronze medalist: Cory Clark/Douglas Rich.
Saddle bronc riding: 1. Zeke Thurston, Big Valley, Alberta, 89 points on Bar T Rodeo’s Son of Sadie, $50,000; 2. Cort Scheer, Elsmere, Neb., 88, $25,000; 3. Lefty Holman, Visalia, Calif., 87.5, $12,000; 4. Taos Muncy, Corona, N.M., 86.75, $6,000
Gold medalist: Zeke Thurston. Silver medalist: Cort Scheer. Bronze medalist: Lefty Holman.
Tie-down roping: 1. Ty Harris, San Angelo, Texas, 7.60 seconds, $50,000; 2. Caleb Smidt, Bellville, Texas, 8.21, $25,000; 3. Trenton Smith, Bigfoot, Texas, 8.82, $12,000; 4. Timber Moore, Aubrey, Texas, 19.74, $6,000
Gold medalist: Ty Harris. Silver medalist: Caleb Smidt. Bronze medalist: Trenton Smith.
Breakaway roping: 1. Jordi Edens, Gatesville, Texas, 2.58 seconds, $50,000; 2. Jackie Crawford, Stephenville, Texas, 2.76, $25,000; 3. Nicole Baggerley-Sweazea, Las Cruces, N.M., 3.03, $12,000; 4. Taylor Munsell, Alva, Okla., 12.44, $6,000
Gold medalist: Jordi Edens. Silver medalist: Jackie Crawford. Bronze medalist: Nicole Baggerley-Sweazea.
Barrel racing: 1. Hailey Kinsel, Cotulla, Texas, 16.794 seconds, $50,000; 2. Maggie Poloncic, Gillette, Wyo., 16.834, $25,000; 3. Michelle Darling, Medord, Okla., 16.860, $12,000; 4. Dona Kay Rule, Minco, Okla., 17.144, $6,000
Gold medalist: Hailey Kinsel. Silver medalist: Maggie Poloncic. Bronze medalist: Michelle Darling.
Bull riding: 1. Trevor Kastner, Roff, Okla., 87.25 points on Matt Scharping’s Bad Beagle, $50,000; 2. Boudreaux Campbell, Crockett, Texas, 83.25, $25,000; no other qualified rides
Gold medalist: Trevor Kastner. Silver medalist: Boudreaux Campbell. Bronze medalist: Keyshawn Whitehorse*.
*received the bronze medal after posting the highest scoring preliminary ride
Hailey Kinsel and Sister were the only defending champions at the Cowboy Games with a time of 16.794, adding another gold medal and $50,000 to their collection. – Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo photo by Ric Andersen