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22 August, 2013

BOWEN RIVER RODEO

 Bowen River Rodeo
First went to Bowen River in 1956. In those days they had 2 shot gun chutes a couple of big gum trees in the arena that was neither round, square or oblong. Travelled down from Townsville in Tom Cannon’s ute. There was John Duncombe, Darby McMartin and the usual swags, tucker boxes and assorted rodeo gear. Now Tom was never noted for being a careful driver, far from it and when we left the coastal highway which was basically corrugated dirt Darby McMartin who was riding in the back with John and I had drifted off to sleep when on a sandy corner we had a rude awakening when we both hit the road when the vehicle skidded on its side down a small embankment. Fortunately no one was hurt apart from bruises. None of us did any good the next day probably thought we were invincible but we all got hurt to some degree with two going to the local hospital. Campdrafter, cattleman and local legend from Strathmore Station, Ted Cunningham was the judge and organiser and they had some salty ones in the pens.
This year Bowen River was one of the early rodeos of the new season staging a 14 event championship catering for all divisions. One of the best efforts was in the junior ranks when Campbell Hodson won the breakaway contest with the excellent time of 3.05 seconds and against a tough field of pro ropers won the bonus placing in the rope and tie. All Around star performer Shane Iker won the rope and tie with a time of 10.30 point 40 ahead of Clancy Middleton. Shane Kenny with a time of 10.85 and Dale Caban with a 12.30 placed third and fourth.
There were 3 2nd division riding events with no one taking a double up on the payout. They had two head on the saddle broncs with Will Durkin winning the average after placing twice with Morgan Marks following suit. Jason Sypher who won the opening round with a 66 was a third with Sam Terry fourth. The bareback went to Jack Kidd with a 74 which was only 1 point behind of the winner of the open event.
William York with a 70 was second with Jamie Howlett and Jason Lynch completing the final two places. On the bulls with 28 entries Jake Plate on a 66 was 2 points ahead of Luke Fielder with Tyson Franettovich third. Jake was a popular Christian name on the bovines as in in the junior contest Jake Whalan also on a 66 won from Jake Bowen with a 60 from judges, Ian Watkins and Joel Hilditch.
Shandel Tosoni laid her claim to one of the best pay cheques when she was the only successful roper in the breakaway competition in a time of 4.28. In the barrel racing Makayla Saunders led a tightly bunched field of entrants with Montana O’Toole placing second ahead of Leanne Kenny and PJ Hanrahan. Montana then won the junior contest ahead of Abby Plate, Bridget Gay and Jordan Cashion.
Gavin Walker notched up his second win of the new season when he had his steer wrestling draw stopped and thrown in the excellent time of 3.15 seconds, the slickest for the 2013 season. Todd Remfrey was second with a 4.80 followed by Shane Iker and Joel Hilditch.
In the team roping a time of 6.10 was the winning run made by recent National Final qualifiers Clancy Middleton and Shane Kenny ahead of another classy pair in Shane Iker on the head and Brody Moss catching heels with a time of 6.4. In for third was Jarrod Deguara and Kacey Kenny with Gavin Walker and Campbell Hodson fourth.
Clayton Lane won the open bareback with a 75 over Jamie Howlett and Ben Gooding. While on the bulls it was Kris Laguna over Mitchell Louden and Kurt Shephard. His 81 points was the high score of the day. Rodeo stock was supplied by Gill Brothers and Destiny Downs with the venue being the rodeo grounds on Strathmore Road.
Gayndah Championship Rodeo
With a history of rodeo going back to the pioneer days, Gayndah in the Burnett District of Queensland is well equipped to stage a first class rodeo. Working with Bowen River who held their open events on the Saturday with Gayndah on the Sunday it enabled riders to compete at both prior to the Gold Coast Finals the following week.
Top money earner was Dale Caban who placed third in the rope and tie contest to the winner Campbell Hodson with a 10.10 followed by Shane Kenny with a 10.20. Dale was not too far away with 11 seconds flat.
Mark Knox on the head partnered up with Dale then took out the tandem roping with a time of 6.15 over Lee Hanrahan and Warrick Hale with a 7.40. Clancy Middleton then got in the money with both partners roping the head with Shane Kenny and Aaron Bookluck. The bonus went to Pat Sharpe as head roper with a time of 16.05.
David Worsfold in the bareback marked the second highest score of the day, an 81 point ride when he drew number 62 of Kerry Hall’s bronc herd ‘Electric Chair’. Saddle bronc winner Lee Bowker who had Kerry Hall’s number 48 ‘Smoke Screen’ to win the second round was runner up in the ‘rigging ride with 80 points.
Third was Ashley Clem with a 75 with consistent Digger Hay fourth with a 74. The roughstock riders got two head in the bull riding with Brian King’s number 16 ‘Red Bull’ carrying Jason Mara and Sam Champ to victory in the rounds. There was no double up scores from judges Barry Jones and Brian Lovett so Jason’s 82 followed by Ben Palmer’s (QLD) 79 took the honours followed by Kurt Shephard and Sam Champ.
Steer wrestling winner was Lachlan O’Neill with a 4.15 over Cameron Bell on 4.85 and just about to seal up his second Australian Championship at the Gold Coast the following weekend. Third with a 7.15 was George Wheeler with Todd Remfrey fourth on a 10.40.
Jeffrey Hay and Lee Bowker won the rounds in the saddle bronc with Jeffrey taking the open on Kerry Hall’s ‘Jump Start’ with Lee on Hall’s number 48 ‘Smoke Screen’ for a 75 staying a point ahead of Brendan Breiner in the average and Cameron Webster. Jeffrey Hay was fourth on a single score.
Barrel racing times with Cheyenne Whitwell the winner with a 14.701. They followed by Jaimi Downing, Jordan Moore and Makayla Saunders. Breakaway ropers had Leanne Kenny winning with a 3.65 followed by Rachelle Carlo, Sharon McGuire and Megan Pohlman.
Peter N. Poole



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