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23 March, 2016

NEW HOME FOR APRA FINALS

Photo of Lee Kimber

Photo of David Worsfold by Mike Kenyon – www.kenyonsportsphotos.com.au

 Photo of David Stacey by Dave Ethell – www.dephotos.com.au

Photo of Ty King by Stephen Mowbray – www.stephenmowbrayphotography.com

Photo of Brad Pierce by Dave Ethell – www.dephotos.com.au

 

 

APRA to hold national finals in Warwick

 

THE Australian Professional Rodeo Association has announced its premier event for the next three years will be held at the Warwick Showgrounds.

The Warwick Rodeo National Finals will be on the last weekend in October and combine two of the greatest equine events in Australia, the Pro Rodeo National Finals and the Warwick Gold Cup campdrafting.

While the campdrafting will start on the Monday, the first National Finals Rodeo action will be on the Thursday night, October 27.

The four rounds of the National Finals will be held on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights and then Sunday afternoon. The finals were held for the first time in three decades in Warwick last year but the initial agreement was only for one year. There will be second-division and junior rodeo action on rodeo weekend as well.

Four of the likely stars at this year’s finals are reigning bareback bronc riding champion David Worsfold (Wandoan, Qld), saddle bronc champion Brad Pierce (Tooma, NSW), current breakaway roping champion Cherie O’Donoghue (Lockington, Vic) and bull ride standings leader Darcy McBean (Katherine, NT). David Stacey (Strathalbyn, SA) and Ty King (Penguin, Tas) will be two to watch in saddle bronc at the finals.

APRA executive chairman Lee Kimber has negotiated a deal with Warwick Show and Rodeo Society president John Kiss to hold the National Finals at Warwick for the next three years.

“John was great to negotiate with, he was up front with all the discussions. We did a lot of the talking and then went back to our respective committees,” Kimber said.

“While the current agreement is for three years, there is a strong possibility Warwick will become the permanent home for the National Finals on the last full weekend in October each year.

“Warwick is the home of some of the top horse people in Australia, if not the world.”

Kimber said Warwick was ideally situated between the competitors in Victoria, South Australia and Tasmania north through New South Wales, South and Central Queensland to the rodeo strongholds in North Queensland and the Northern Territory.

“The sand arena at the Warwick Showgrounds is a great all-weather surface. The surface will always be safe, rain, hail or shine,” he said.

He said one of the plusses for Warwick was it was the home of the Australian Rodeo Heritage Centre which also houses the office of the APRA.

“We have a number of functions at the Heritage Centre during rodeo week and hold an old timers reunion. Having the reunion helps people who have been involved in the association to bond together for the betterment of rodeo.

“There will be some new inductees to the Hall of Fame during the finals.”

The top 15 in each of the APRA championship events will compete in Warwick.

Kimber said the three-year deal would be well received by APRA members after some excellent feedback on the finals in Warwick last year.

“The competitors know where the goalposts are for the finals, they can strive for a top-15 spot knowing if they make the National Finals, they will be competing over four rounds in Warwick on the last weekend in October.

More information APRA office, 07 46618183

 



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Australian Professional Rodeo Association
PO BOX 264, Warwick QLD 4370
Ph: 07 4661 8183 - Fx: 07 4661 4990 - Email: apra@prorodeo.com.au
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