Over the weekend, top finishers in tie-down roping and barrel racing won more than a cash payout. They earned the right to compete for a part of the biggest payout in rodeo history at THE AMERICAN semifinals in Mesquite, TX on Feb. 21-23, 2014.
The tie-down event packed The Lone Star Arena in Stephenville, TX with standing room only. The first place finisher, 16-year-old Westyn Hughes, had an average time of 28.63 seconds and won $3,692.71 combined for average and fastest times. Other top finishers include: Trevor Thiel (29.44) who won $3,006.88 in all, Marty Yates (30.03) who won $2,146.16, Scott Meeks (30.23) who won $1,325.63, Blane Cox (30.28) who won $1,451.88, Adam Gray (30.32), Ace Sloan (30.47), Ricky Canton (31.01), Hunter Herrin (31.23) and Will Howell (31.42).
Paige Conrado was the top qualifier in barrel racing, winning $2,137.50, in the D.R. Horton Classic held in Loveland, CO with a time of 16.035 seconds. However, 14-year-old Sydney Surin is a competitor to watch as well, finishing ninth with a time of 16.409 seconds. Competitor’s ages ranged from 14-45. Other barrel racing qualifiers include: Toni Hardin (16.288) winning $1,781.25, Ronnie Will (16.304) winning $1425, Shali Lord (16.325) winning $1068.75, Kelly Koeppen (16.341) winning $712.50, Shelly Anzick (16.353), Christine Laughlin (16.365), Becki Mask (16.366) and Gretchen Benbenek (16.425).
“I was very excited to see the turn out from fans to these events this past weekend,” said RURAL MEDIA GROUP President and CEO Randy Bernard. “Fans are excited to see these cowboys and cowgirls compete to win prize money that can change their lives, and I think we’ll continue to see good turnouts at these exciting qualifier events.”
On August 22 at AT&T Stadium, RFD-TV announced THE AMERICAN would be taking place on March 2, 2014, at the home of the Dallas Cowboys’ AT&T Stadium, in Arlington, TX. With a $2 million payout, it would be the richest one-day rodeo in history. Of the qualifiers, the top five winners in each rodeo event at the Semifinals will advance to compete in THE AMERICAN, against the top 10 winners at the WNFR and PBR World Championships.
THE AMERICAN is being closely coordinated with PBR’s Iron Cowboy V, which will take place the day before THE AMERICAN on March 1, 2014 at AT&T Stadium in Arlington, TX. Combined, the events are expected to bring over 100,000 fans and participants to the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex.
Tickets for THE AMERICAN went on sale on September 16, 2013. Ticket prices range from $20 to $150, not including taxes. They can be purchased at the AT&T Stadium Box Office, all Ticketmaster locations and online at www.americanrodeo.com.