Emerald cowboy leads Queensland competitors
FIVE riders will compete in three events at the Warwick Rodeo Australian Professional Rodeo Association National Finals on October 24-27 at the Warwick Showgrounds.
The 15 leading riders on the pro tour have qualified for the eight championship events in the four-round national finals.
Finals rounds will be on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, October 24-26.
The fourth round will be during the Sunday program on October 27 at the Warwick Showgrounds. There is also a second division and junior rodeo during the October weekend in Warwick.
There will be three Queenslanders in three events along with riders from New South Wales and Victoria in the national finals.
The Queensland contingent will be led by 2017 all around cowboy champion Campbell Hodson from Emerald.
Hodson has qualified first in the rope and tie, second in team roping header standings and eighth in steer wrestling.
Emerald cowboy Shane Kenny has won the most titles in the APRA and has the chance to add to his tally this year.
He is third in the rope and tie, and team roping header standings and fourth in steer wrestling.
Past junior title winner Darcy Kersh will fly the North Queensland flag at the finals in the rope and tie, steer wrestling and team roping. He is in the top seven in all three timed events for cowboys and hails from Charters Towers.
Pine Grove (Victoria) rider Terry Evison is the all around cowboy leader going into the finals. He is in first place in team roping header standings, second in the rope and tie, third in steer wrestling and sixth in the team roping heeler standings.
Yass rider Clay Bush is third in team roping heeler standings, sixth in steer wrestling and ninth in team roping.
Cowboys in two timed events at the finals include Shane Iker (Alton Downs, Qld), Liam Davison (Charters Towers, Qld), Warrick Hale (Sarina, Qld), Cameron Milner (Rockhampton, Qld) and Lee Kimber (Lockington, Victoria).
Sully Malay is the only cowboy in timed and rough stock events at the finals.
He is originally from the Kimberleys in Western Australia but is now based in Young, New South Wales. He is 10th in the bull ride standings and 11th in team roping heeler standings.
In cowgirl ranks, the only dual qualifier is Emerald rider Ellysa Kenny.
She is the pro tour champion and standings leader in breakaway roping and is ranked 13th in the barrel race.
At the start of the national finals, competitors will be given credit for their prizemoney during the pro tour which means any rider near the bottom of the standings will need to place in each round of the finals to catch the standings leaders.
Spectators will see the best of the best in Warwick with the top 15 in each event competing in each round of the finals.