postheadericon Canadian riding through dry times

DODGE CITY, Kan. – This time of year is busy for every ProRodeo contestant going down the road.

Bareback rider Luke Creasy took it up a notch with an overnight drive to Oklahoma City to catch a 6:15 a.m. flight out of Will Rogers World Airport. He’ll do it with a smile on his face after posting an 83-point ride on Harry Vold Rodeo’s Breezy Weather on Thursday night to take the bareback riding lead at Dodge City Roundup Rodeo.

Luke Creasy

Luke Creasy

His flight will carry the Brownfield, Alberta, cowboy to Calgary, Alberta, where he’ll meet up with his brother, Clay, and drive the 36 miles to Strathmore, Alberta, to compete in a Friday afternoon performance there. Afterward, the Creasys will travel the 600 miles to Abbotsford, B.C., for a rodeo near the province’s coastline.

“From there, I’ll be flying back here for Sunday,” he said, referring to Roundup’s championship round.

That’s possible because Creasy put on a solid performance in southwest Kansas.

“I didn’t know very much about that horse,” he said. “I looked at the stats on that horse; there was just one stat, and it didn’t look very good. Somebody made an off-hand comment on how nice it was, I looked to the positive side of that. I went to the basics and knew if I made a good ride, the horse would cooperate with me, and it might be good enough for a short-go appearance.”

Roughstock cowboys – bareback riders, saddle bronc riders and bull riders – will compete one full round, while timed-event contestants will go twice. The top 12 scores and cumulative times in each event will earn a trip back for Sunday. Creasy has been there before.

In fact, the first time he competed at Roundup in 2010, he posted an 82 in the first round, then shared the final-round victory with an 87 with eight-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier Wes Stevenson. Because Stevenson had posted a better score in the opening round, he earned the title, but Creasy was the runner-up – a pretty good start for a cowboy in just his third year as a pro.

“This has been, honest to God, a pretty lousy year,” Creasy said, noting a string of injuries that has kept him sidelined far too long over the last two seasons. “Just having to sit on my butt for a month straight didn’t help me get more advanced. It took getting on a lot of horses, a lot of practice and going to little rodeos to get back into the swing of things.

“When things started going well, I couldn’t draw worth a dang.”

Cowboys are matched with their animal by a blind draw. Just like humans, some animal athletes are better than others, and Creasy has experienced a pretty significant drawing drought. Still, he realizes things can turn around in a hurry.

“I’ve been waiting and being positive, knowing if I kept my basics and my positive attitude that eventually the draws will come around, and that’s what happened tonight,” he said.

Dodge City Roundup Rodeo
Dodge City, Kan.
July 31-Aug. 4
Bareback riding:
1. Luke Creasy, 83 points on Harry Vold Rodeo’s Breezy Weather; 2. R.C. Landingham, 82; 3. Tim O’Connell, 81; 4. Seth Hardwick, 80; 5. Tom McFarland, 79; 6. (tie) Caleb Bennett and Brian Bain, 77; 8. (tie) J.R. Vezain, Casey Colletti and Joe Gunderson, 75.

Steer wrestling: First round leaders: 1. Casey Martin, 4.2 seconds; 2. Matt Reeves, 4.3; 3. Chad Van Campen, 4.4; 4. Ty Willick, 4.5; 5. Bray Armes, 4.6; 6. Riley Duvall, 4.9; 7. (tie) Jacob Shofner, Jule Hazen and Shayde Etherton, 5.0. Second round leaders: 1. Bray Armes, 3.2 seconds; 2. Casey Martin, 4.0; 3. (tie) Ben Shofner and John Kloeckler, 4.1; 5. Dru Melvin, 4.2; 6. Riley Duvall, 4.8; 7. Blake Knowles, 4.9; 8. (tie) Jared Thompson and Shayde Etherton, 5.0. Average leaders: 1. Bray Armes, 7.8 seconds on two runs; 2. Casey Martin, 8.2; 3. Riley Duvall, 9.7; 4. Shayde Etherton, 10.0; 5. Ben Shofner, 10.1; 6. Cody Pratt, 11.1; 7. Jule Hazen, 11.5; 8. Cody Kroul, 11.7.

Team roping: First round leaders: 1. Clay Smith/Jake Smith, 5.7 seconds; 2. Caleb Scmidt/B.J. Duggger, 6.2; 3. Mike Bacon/Joseph Harrison, 6.5; 4. John O’Connor/Ernie Bacon, 20.8; no other qualified times. Second round leaders: 1. Matt Sherwood/Tommy Zuniga, 4.6 seconds; 2. Paul David Tierney/Jared Bilby, 4.9; 3. Caleb Smidt/B.J. Dugger, 5.8; 4. Mike Bacon/Joseph Harrison, 7.2; 5. Trent Barrett/Jake Pelton, 21.1; no other qualified times. Average: 1. Caleb Smidt, 12.0 seconds on two runs; 2. Mike Bacon/Joseph Harrison, 13.7; 3. Matt Sherwood/Tommy Zuniga, 4.6 seconds on one run; 4. Paul David Tierney/Jared Bilby, 4.9; 5. Clay Smith/Jake Smith, 5.7; 6. John O’Connor/Ernie Bacon, 20.8; 7. Trent Barrett/Jake Pelton, 21.1; no other qualified times.

Saddle bronc riding: 1. (tie) Tyler Corrington, on Frontier Rodeo’s Bear Paw, and Bradley Harter, on Frontier Rodeo’s Strike Fire, 83 points; 3. Jesse Bail, 80; 4. (tie) Cort Scheer and Ty Atchison, 79; 6. Isaac Diaz, 77; 7. Ryan Bestol, 76; 8. Curtis Garton, 75.

Tie-down roping: First round leaders: 1. Jerome Schneeberger, 8.5 seconds; 2. Bryson Sechrist, 9.3; 3. Ben Madsen, 9.4; 4. Tyler Garten, 10.0; 5. Justin Maass, 10.1; 6. Blake Deckard, 11.0; 7. Billy Hamilton, 11.1; Caleb Smidt, 11.3. Second round leaders: 1. (tie) Caleb Smidt and Hunter Herrin, 7.8 seconds; 3. (tie) Fred Whitfield and Ryan Watkins, 8.1; 5. (tie) Paul David Tierney and Clint Carpenter, 8.4; 7. Jerome Schneeberger, 9.2; 8. Bill Sharber, 9.5. Average leaders: 1. Jerome Schneeberger, 17.7 seconds on two runs; 2. Caleb Smidt, 19.1; 3. Clint Carpenter, 19.9; 4. Blake Deckard, 20.6; 5. Ben Madsen, 21.1; 6. Tyler Garten, 22.2; 7. Fred Whitfield, 26.9; 8. Tylen Laton, 29.0.

Barrel racing: First round leaders: 1. Laura Lambert, 17.22 seconds; 2. Shali Lord, 17.23; 3. June Holeman, 17.30; 4. Jessica Frost, 17.33; 5. Kelly Waide, 17.34; 6. (tie) Morgan Figueroa and Carol Chesher, 17.35; 8. Shannon Witcher, 17.45; 9. Lizzy Ehr, 17.48; 10. Kyra Stierwalt, 17.51. Second round leaders: 1. Lizzy Ehr, 17.06 seconds; 2. Kendra Dickson, 17.08; 3. Laura Lambert, 17.13; 4. Kaley Bass, 17.14; 5. (tie) Jessica Frost and Shali Lord, 17.18; 7. (tie) Carol Chesher and Emily Miller, 17.24; 9. Gretchen Benbenek, 17.34; 10. Kelly Waide, 17.35. Average leaders: 1. Laura Lambert, 34.35; 2. Shali Lord, 34.41; 3. Jessica Frost, 34.51; 4. Lizzy Ehr, 34.54 on two runs; 5. Carol Chesher, 34.59; 6. Kelly Waide, 34.69; 7. Kaley Bass, 34.76; 8. Gretchen Benbenek, 34.94; 9. (tie) Ryann Pedone and Sandy McElreath, 35.34.

Bull riding: 1. Clayton Foltyn, 86 points on 4L and Diamond S Rodeo’s 942; 2. Bart Miller, 85; 4. Joe Frost, 82; 4. Shane Proctor, 78; 5. John Young, 72; no other qualified rides.

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