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Clay Elliott wins Strathmore for second time



STRATHMORE, Alberta – After two re-rides, saddle bronc rider Clay Elliott won the Strathmore (Alberta) Stampede for the second consecutive year. 

The 24-year-old, Canadian cowboy had to fight for his second Strathmore win by riding three broncs in a one-header. Elliott’s first bronc turned out of the chute and stalled in the arena. Since he didn’t buck for the entire eight seconds, Elliott was granted a re-ride, but his second bronc turned out backwards. 

“It was a pretty hot day, and getting on three horses back-to-back was a lot, but I’d do it again,” Elliott said. “They’re so darn good, but it really goes to show how special a good bronc ride is. When you have your day and they have their day and when the horse has a good trip, there’s a lot that can happen.” 

After duking it out with two other broncs, Elliott got a third shot on Outlaw Buckers’ Tubs Little Muffin.  

Elliott didn’t get onto his final bronc completely blind, as his travel partner Taos Muncy rode Little Muffin at the Ponoka (Alberta) Stampede earlier this summer. 

“I knew I had a chance to get first, but it’s pretty unique when your horse has her day and you have your day,” Elliott said. “I’m a tall bronc rider (6-foot), and it’s hard for me to show off when they’re smaller animals.”

Little Muffin provided plenty of air time for Elliott to set his feet. 

“I just tried to make the same ride and have a good mark-out and set my feet on every jump,” Elliott said. “What it is, bigger horses or smaller horses, it’s all about riding your animal.”

Elliott made his 87-point ride on Little Muffin on Aug. 5, so he had to wait to find out if his score would remain at the top. 

“I knew there were lots of good matchups to come and some good scores up, so I wasn’t sure I would get first,” Elliott said. “I was very excited since it’s my second year winning that one, and it’s one of the best Canadian rodeos, well, best rodeos, period.”

At the 2017 Strathmore Stampede, Elliott won with an 86.5-point ride on Wayne Vold Rodeo’s Klondike. He went on to qualify for his second consecutive trip to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, where he finished 14th in the world standings. 

“It’s (Strathmore) been good to me and I am sure happy I have some good luck at it,” Elliott said. 

Winning Strathmore was a triple victory for Elliott, as it’s close to his hometown in Nanton, Alberta, and it bumped him up in the Canadian standings and the PRCA | RAM World Standings by taking home an unofficial total of $6,227. 

“It’s good when there are so many ups and downs in rodeo, you might not draw the best horse, so you take advantage of every opportunity,” Elliott said. “The dollar value of the rodeo doesn’t mean much, it’s just riding bucking horses, and the more I enjoy it and the more I crave bucking horses, the more I win. And this rodeo having so much money and a good horse, if you’re going to go to 70-90 rodeos a year you will have as many chances as everyone else. So, when it lines up at a big rodeo it’s special and unique, and you have to take advantage of it. I’m glad I did.”

Elliott was ranked eighth in the world standings before winning Strathmore. This win will give him some breathing room to possibly pursue the prestigious Linderman Award by adding in tie-down roping or team roping. 

Other winners at Strathmore were bareback rider Orin Larsen (89.5 points on Calgary Stampede Rodeo’s T-29 Trail Dust); steer wrestler Tanner Milan (3.8 seconds); team ropers Trent Tunke/Trey Gallais (4.6 seconds); tie-down roper Tyson Durfey (7.4 seconds); barrel racer Carman Pozzobon (17.199 seconds); and bull rider Sage Kimzey (89 points on Vold Rodeo’s 008 Heavens Basement).

For more coverage of the Strathmore Stampede check out the Aug. 10 edition of ProRodeo Sports News on prorodeo.com.
 
 
 
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