Some big money was won by Albertans at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (WNFR) in Las Vegas, Nev., this week.
In the steer wrestling, Donalda cowboy Curtis Cassidy split the win with 4.0 second run in the final night of competition on Dec. 11, 2021.
Cassidy split the event with Dirk Tavenner of Rigby, Idaho, and brought Cassidy’s total WNFR earnings to $38,521 and to nearly $115,000 for the season.
Provost cowboy Scott Guenthner, who previously announced that 2021 would be his final WNFR, rode with a time of 5.1 seconds on the final day of competition, earning himself a sixth-place cheque worth $23,280 and a season total of just over $98,000.
Over in the team roping, the Alberta-Utah combination of World Champion heeler Jeremy Buhler of Arrowood, Alta, and CFR header Rhen Richard of Roosevelt, Utah, finished on flat note, failing to place in the tenth round after an otherwise strong week.
Still, the duo finished strong in the aggregate taking fourth place overall with WNFR earnings of just over $104,000, and overall earnings of $208,000 for Richard and $207,000 for Buhler.
In the saddle bronc riding, Two time World and Canadian Champion Zeke Thurston of Big Valley placed in the final day of competition after an 89 point ride.
The fifth-place finish was enough to secure Thurston the third position in the WNFR aggregate standings, pocketing nearly $130,000 in the 10 days of competition.
Thurston was the highest Canadian money earner at the WNFR, and he finished the season with winnings just shy of $230,000.
Finishing sixth place in the saddle bronc aggregate was Meeting Creek cowboy Layton Green, who finished the WNFR just under $64,000 in earnings and $166,000 for the season.
Sherwood Park’s Kolby Wanchuk finished up the WNFR with just over $31,000 in earnings and $118,000 for the season.
Finally, Rocky Mountain House cowboy Ben Andersen pocketed around $26,000 at the WNFR, and just over $108,000 for the season.