QUEENSLAND rider Darcy Kersh is the leader of the rookie all around cowboy standings in the Australian Professional Rodeo Association.
Kersh is a former junior APRA champion and leads the all around and steer wrestling in the rookie standings.
Some of the cowboys in their rookie year in the APRA have an extra incentive to succeed this Saturday at the Wagga Wagga Rodeo in NSW.
Organisers of the Wagga Wagga rodeo will give out trophy buckles in second division saddle bronc, bull and bareback bronc rides as well as a buckle for highest scoring second-division cowboy.
Many of the riders who have only started competing in the APRA in the past year will be eligible to compete in second division at Wagga Wagga.
There is an Xtreme Bull Ride at Jamison Hotel in Penrith on Saturday where Rothbury (NSW) cowboy Jason O’Hearn will be one of the favourites. O’Hearn has almost won three times the prizemoney of any other open bull rider this season.
The third rodeo this Saturday will be on the polocrosse grounds at Ballarat in Victoria.
NSW rider Tom Kerr leads the rookie saddle bronc standings after four months of the 2018-2019 season.
After a win and second in the bull ride rounds at the Warwick Rodeo APRA National Finals last year, Central Queensland rider Brady Fielder is this season’s leader in rookie bull ride standings.
He won the championship buckle and the aggregate in the finals after being the only rider to make time in two of the four rounds.
Such was the standard of the bucking bulls, there were only five scoring rides out of 75 at the national finals.
Leongatha (Vic) cowgirl Elley Hulls will be the favourite for the breakaway roping at the Ballarat Rodeo.
Hulls won the aggregate in last year’s national finals in breakaway roping and also won the all around championship and national finals aggregate.
The four top riders in all around cowgirl standings hail from Victoria, Cherie O’Donoghue, Hulls, Julie Breed and Amber Burns so the action should be close in both cowgirl events at Ballarat.
Queensland rider Cheyenne Whitwell rounds off the top-five in all around cowgirl standings.
Rodeo details for February 9
Wagga Wagga, NSW, 4 pm start at Wagga Equex Centre
Xtreme Bulls, NSW, 6:30pm start at Jamison Hotel, Penrith
Ballarat, Vic, 6pm start at Ballarat Polocrosse Grounds
Rookie standings leaders
All around cowboy and steer wrestling – Darcy Kesch, Qld
Saddle bronc – Tom Kerr, NSW
Bull ride – Brady Fielder, Qld
Bareback – Luke Higgins, Vic
Team Roping heeler – Jay Pokarier, Qld
All around cowgirl and breakaway roping – Kylie Hancock, Qld
Barrel race – Hayley Rogers, SA
February 9 – Ballarat Rodeo, Victoria
February 9 – Xtreme Bulls Rodeo at Penrith, NSW
February 9 – Wagga Wagga Rodeo, NSW
February 16 – Lillico Rodeo, Tasmania
Februart 23 – Narrandera Rodeo, NSW
February 23 – Whittlesea Rodeo, Victoria
March 2 – Clare, SA
March 2 – Sale, Victoria
March 2 – Hay, NSW
March 3 – Festival State Timed Events Rodeo, Clare, SA
March 8 – Kyabram, Victoria
March 9 – Gowrie Park, Tasmania
March 9 – Merrijig, Victoria
March 10 – Chiltern, Victoria