By: Kyle Jones
SALT LAKE CITY – The WCRA (World Champions Rodeo Alliance) closed out the second leg of their 2021 WCRA Triple of Rodeo (TCR) major Saturday evening at the Days of ’47 Cowboy Games and Rodeo in Salt Lake City. The TCR event paid out a guaranteed $562,500 where each champion walked away with a minimum of $25,000 and a Gold Medal.
Seventeen-year-old tie-down roper Riley Webb (Denton, TX) went into the event with two consecutive wins (Stampede at the E, Rodeo Corpus Christi) under his belt to put him in contention to be the youngest millionaire in the history of rodeo. If Webb was to triumph, he would be the first victor of WCRA Triple Crown of Rodeo- a $1 million bonus.
Webb faced off against World Champion Ryan Jarrett (Bigfoot, TX) and Marshall Leonard (Shongaloo, LA) in the gold medal round. Last to rope, Webb needed to earn a time faster than Jarrett’s 8.03-second time. Composed and collected, Webb backed into the roping box and as he readied for what would be a career-defining moment and historic moment in the sport of Rodeo. Webb attempted to beat the time but unfortunately was unsuccessful after a missed catch.
“Riley’s sportsmanship and attitude is truly what makes this young man a Champion,” said WCRA President, Bobby Mote. “It’s been a journey since his very first major win, and we could not be more proud to call him a WCRA Champion and he is truly the epitome of what All For Rodeo stands for.”
The Bareback riding was a tightly contested battle with seven of eight riders earning an 80-point score or higher. Clayton Biglow (Clements, CA) matched up against Stevie Knicks and found himself earning the highest marked ride of the week with a 90.5-point score and a gold medal. The 2019 world champ came in ahead of TCR contender Richmond Champion’s (Stevensville, MT) 85.0 and Nebraska’s Garrett Shadbolt’s (Merriman, NE) 84.5.
Tyler Waguespack (Gonzalez, LA) was unstoppable in the steer wrestling where he notched the only time under four seconds in the gold medal round. The 2x world champion recorded a 3.69-second run in the gold medal round, prior to delivering a lightning-fast 4.03-second effort in the semi-finals round. The victory is Waguespack’s first WCRA Major win.
As the one of only four team ropers to deliver a qualified run in the Gold Medal Round, the duo of Tanner Green (Cotulla, TX) and Will Woodfin (Stephenville, TX) delivered a 5.08-second run. Besting the No. 1 team on the DO47 leaderboard and WCRA Champions Kaleb Driggers (Hoboken, GA) and Junior Nogueira (Presidente PRU, SP BR) along with 13x NFR qualifier Luke Brown (Lipan, TX) and Hunter Koch (Lott, TX).
Brody Cress (Hillsdale, WY) and Chase Brooks (Deer Lodge, MT) quickly became immersed in a shootout for the $25,000 major payday in the gold medal round. Both Cress and Brooks delivered a 90.5 performance. Since Cress earned a higher marked ride in the semi-final round, he earned the winning title to split the payday with Brooks. TCR contender Kolby Wanchuk (Sherwood Park, AB) came in a close third-place position with a critical 90-point ride on Get Smart to walk away with the Bronx medal.
A fiercely contested race in the breakaway roping began unfolded as Women’s Rodeo World Champion All-Around Cowgirl Jackie Crawford (Stephenville, TX) landed a remarkable 2.28-second time prior to Bradi Good’s (Abilene, TX) 2.48-second run. ICU nurse Tacy Kay Webb (Madisonville, TX) backed into the box gave a groundbreaking performance with a 1.95-second time- the fastest of the week. Webb’s time was won the discipline title ousting Crawford and Good from the top spot.
As the Pioneer Day event continued, a hotly contested race in the barrel racing began. Women’s Rodeo World Champion (WRWC) Hallie Hanssen (Hermosa, SD), 2x WCRA Champion Michelle Darling (Medford, OK),and Oklahoma’s Wenda Johnson (Pawhuska, OK) finished the gold medal round edging each other’s times. Johnson navigated the course with ease as her and her gelding, Macgyver, ran the fastest time of the week with 16.948-second time edging out Hanssen’s 16.997-second time and Darlings 17.189-second time.
In the bull riding, PBR (Professional Bull Riders) world No. 31 Claudio Montanha, Jr. (Pacaembu, SP, BR) rode best. Capping his perfect 2-for-2 DO47 effort on Saturday evening. The PBR man rode Arctic Assassin for a monstrous 90.5 points to net an equally impressive check for $25,000. Montanha logged one of only three qualified rides in the round, to land his first WCRA Champion Title.
On July 31 and Noon CT fans will be able to tune into The Days of ‘47 on a CBS network broadcast.
Since launching in May of 2018, the WCRA and its partners have awarded more than $9,000,000 in new money to rodeo athletes.
Nominations are now open for WCRA’s next Major rodeo- Cowtown Christmas Championship in Fort Worth, Texas December 15-18. Athletes are eligible to nominate their competitive efforts in the Virtual Rodeo Qualifier (VRQ) until November 28 to earn a spot in the $360,000 event.
All results from the event can be found here.
WCRA is a professional sport and entertainment entity, created to develop and advance the sport of rodeo by aligning all levels of competition. In association with the PBR, WCRA produces major rodeo events, developing additional opportunities for rodeo-industry competitors, stakeholders, and fans. To learn more, visit wcrarodeo.com. For athletes interested in learning more about the WCRA Virtual Rodeo Qualifier (VRQ) system, visit app.wcrarodeo.com.