LAS VEGAS - All a bull rider had to do for a paycheck Thursday night was hold on. Edgar's Parker Breding did far more than that in a round that delivered only five qualified rides.
In a match-up fitting for Las Vegas at the National Finals Rodeo, Breding drew Let's Gamble and took him for a 92.5 ride for the Round 8 win. Breding is the only cowboy to ride six of eight bulls here and continues to lead the high-paying average standings worth almost $70,000.
Breding admitted he had a bone to pick with Let's Gamble.
“I bucked off a couple now and I was trying to completely forget about those,” said Breding. “I watched some videos of this bull I had tonight, and I really liked the looks of him. I knew I had another really good opportunity to be doing this interview if I could just stay forward, get him rode, and it worked out pretty good.”
Breding told MTN Sports Wednesday in a feature story that he's cut out the Vegas night life this year and it's paying off. He sits fourth in the world standings with $237,248 and leads the average with 518 points on six bulls.
“I’ve just been treating it as one bull at a time and like I said, not letting the bad get to me,” he said. “I had that bull last night rode I felt like and (he) got me down before the whistle so I was little bummed out, but I had to get over that today and make sure it was out of my mind to do it again.
“I definitely think I need to not let myself get complacent,” he said. “It’s definitely the best I’ve ever done here but I need to treat it likes it’s not and that I have something to prove. Go out these last two (nights) like I have been and try to finish off strong.”
Miles City's Haven Meged continues to make bank at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo here.
Meged turned in another big money round in tie-down roping with a run of 7.8 seconds. That was good for a second place finish vaulting him to fourth in the world standings and fifth in the NFR average. The 2019 world champion collected $21,336 with Thursday's finish and climbed to $206,027.43 for the season.
Richmond Champion and Caleb Bennett rode second and third in the bareback but neither cashed a check. Champion (Stevensville) scored 79 aboard Assault while Bennett settled for 82 on Soap Bubbles.
Champion feels like he's close to a round win and trying to stay patient with two to go.
"A couple rounds being second or third, then a point or half point (off of the win). You're always happy to get in those top three places, paying like a slot machine, but you're here to win buckles and get the gold," Champion told MTN Sports. "I feel like I'm close, and close and close and I can taste it."
Bennett and Champion are ninth and tenth respectively in the PRCA bareback world standings.
Utah's Kaycee Feild, who leads the word standings with over $278,000, earned another win spinning High Heels for 87.5.
Will Lumus (Byhalia, MS) took Thursday's steer wrestling in 3.4 seconds to pocket $26,997. Louisiana's Jacob Talley leads a tight race in the world standings with $201,280.37.
Team roping turned in a tough night for Montana's Tryan cousins. Clay threw a quick rope but partner Jake Long only connected on one heel for a time of 9.6. Chase Tryan and Brenten Hall were just outside the money in 6.6. Clay Smith (Broken Arrow, Okla.) and Jade Corkill (Fallon, Nev.) won the round in 3.7 seconds.
Melstone's Sage Newman was chasing his third straight check but the NFR rookie was bucked off of Wall Street. Deer Lodge cowboy Chase Brooks scored 84.5 to place fifth winning $6,967 and climbing to second in the average. Hillsdale, Wyoming's Brody Cress entered with the average lead and still owns it after turning in a qualified ride of 75.5 on Lil Sugar.
Stetson Wright and Layton Green split the round win with 91 points.
Circle native Lisa Lockhart (Oelrichs, SD) clipped another barrel Thursday and finished last 19.26. Gillette's Amanda Welsh entered sixth in both the world and the average standings, placed 14th in 19.12.