(Story by Susan Kanode/NWSSR)
DENVER - The 2020 rodeo season is looking good for bareback rider Mason Clements if the success that he has had at the National Western Stock Show Rodeo continues.
Clements, from Draper, Utah, took the early lead during the first performance of this year’s rodeo with a 89.5-point ride on Bailey Pro Rodeo’s horse named Fargo. That ride is just shy of the 91-point arena record and will give the rest of the field something to strive for throughout the next eight days.
The competition here features two full rounds. Clements will have his second horse at the Friday matinee. He is hoping for another top ride and a chance to advance in the new tournament-style format here. The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association sanctioned events started Thursday night, Eight groups of contestants compete twice through the first 16 performances.
Their times and scores will be added together with the top 24 advancing to one of three semifinals performances that will be held on the final Saturday of the show, Jan. 25. They will all start on an even playing field and the top four in each event will compete in Sunday’s Championships. Those 12 contestants will once again start at zero. Whoever has the fastest time or highest score then will be crowned Denver’s champion.
Clements finished last year’s season in 16th place, one spot out of qualifying for his third Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. Watching events on television isn’t his style and there is nothing he wants more than to be back in Las Vegas next December. After missing part of 2019 on the injured list and having knee surgery, he is healthy and has big goals to accomplish.
“I feel really good,” Clements said. “I stayed busy all of December and that helped, but I hated missing the finals. I’m excited about how well things are going and plan to be in Las Vegas next December.”
Clements competed at Denver’s invitational Colorado VS the World rodeos last Saturday and won the bareback riding. He won nearly $10,000.
“I hope I can keep it rolling,” Clements added. “So far Denver has been great. That momentum can go a long way.”
The 114th National Western Stock Show will have two rodeo performances on Friday at 1:30 and 7:30 p.m.
First Performance –
Bareback Riding: 1, Mason Clements, Draper, Utah, 84.5 points on Bailey Pro Rodeo’s Fargo. 2, Connor Hamilton, Calgary, Alberta, 87.5. 3, Anthony Thomas, Houston, Texas, 84. 4, Chad Rutherford, Lake Charles, La., 80.5.
Steer Wrestling: 1, Nick Guy, Sparta, Wis., 4.5 seconds. 2, Tanner Milan, Cochrane, Alberta, 5.3. 3, Justice Johnson, Bismarck, N.D., 6.1. 4, Bear Pasco, Morro Bay, Calif., 13.7.
Team Roping: 1, Charly Craford, Stephenville, Texas, and Logan Medlin, Tatum, N.M., 5.0 seconds. 2, Rhen Richard, Roosevelt, Utah and Jeremy Buhler, Arrowwood, Alberta, 6.0. 3, Riley Minor and Brady Minor, Ellensburg, Wash., 9.8. 4, Nick Sartain, Bandera, Texas, and Blaine Vick, Breckenridge, Texas, 11.2.
Saddle Bronc Riding: 1, Mitch Pollock, Twin Falls, Idaho, 82 points on Bailey Pro Rodeo’s Big Casino. 2, Rusty Wright, Milford, Utah, 80. 3, Luke White, Lincoln, Calif., 77.5. 4, Justin Lawrence, Exeter, Calif., 65.
Tie Down Roping: Tyler Milligan, Pawhuska, Okla., 8.7 seconds. 2, Randall Carlisle, Athens, La., 8.7. 3, Adam Gray, Seymour, Texas, 9.6. 4, Colt Papy, Henrietta, Texas, 10.4.
Women’s Barrel Race: 1, Ivy Hurst, Springer, Okla., 15.03 seconds. 2, Jimmie Smith, McDade, Texas, 15.10. 3, Wendy Hoefer, Fort Lupton, Colorado, 15.23. 4, Tiany Schuster, Krum, Texas, 15.33.
Bull Riding: (three rides) 1, Josh Frost, Randlett, Utah, 82 points on 4L & Diamond S Rodeo’s Crazy Nights. 2, Shad Winn, Nephi, Utah, 78. 3, Boudreaux Campbell, Crockett, Texas, 70.