07.07.2017
Salt Lake City, UTAH

 

Cowboys and Cowgirls Ready to Go For Gold in Salt Lake City

by Ann Bleiker

 

Days of '47 Cowboy Games Contestant List

The field for the much anticipated Days of '47 Cowboy Games and Rodeo is set with a great mix of current and former world champions as well as the new kids on the block trying to etch their names into the PRCA and WPRA record books.

The Komatsu Equipment Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo presented by Zions Bank, July 19-22 and 24, will take place at the all-new, $16 million, state-of-the-art Days of ’47 Arena at the Utah State Fairpark. The venue—an outdoor arena located in the heart of Salt Lake City—features 10,000 stadium-style seats.

“We are excited to welcome these world class athletes to the new Days of '47 Arena and watch them compete for a share of $1 million,” said Days of ’47 Rodeo General Manager Tommy Joe Lucia. “Looking at our list of athletes combined with our exciting new format, at our brand-new stadium, we anticipate a highly competitive event that fans will enjoy and a life-changing rodeo for the cowboys and cowgirls.”

A total of 32 contestants each in bareback riding, steer wrestling, saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, barrel racing and bull riding, along with 32 teams in the team roping have earned the right to compete in the Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo.

Seven of the current PRCA world champions will compete in one of the first three performances as they look to add a Gold Medal to their 2016 World Champion Gold Buckle.

"It would be pretty outstanding," said 2016 PRCA World Champion Tie-Down Roper Tyson Durfey, when asked what it would mean to add a Gold Medal to his collection. "I have won some pretty cool prizes in my career over the last decade, but never have I ever won a Gold Medal.

"I won a car in Brazil one-time at a big competition, won a rifle, buckles, spurs and all that stuff, but never won a Gold Medal."

This will be the first time in the history of the PRCA/WPRA that contestants will have an opportunity to compete for Gold, Silver or Bronze Medals at a regular season rodeo. The previous two times were in conjunction with the Olympic Winter Games in Calgary (1988) and Salt Lake City (2002), when rodeo was part of the Cultural Olympiad. The medals that will be awarded at the Days of '47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo will be produced by OC Tanner, the same company that made the Olympic medals for the champions of the 2002 Olympic Winter Games.

This will be an international event with contestants not only from the United States and Canada but also Brazil, Australia and France.

Utah rodeo fans will be treated to the "Wright" show in the saddle bronc riding with brothers Cody, Jake, Jesse and Spencer along with brother-in-law CoBurn Bradshaw and Cody's sons, Rusty and Ryder, all vying for the $50,000 that will be awarded to the champion on July 24. Other family duos that will be looking to spoil the Wright's celebration will be Jacobs and Sterling Crawley and Cody and Heith DeMoss.

Bull riding fans will be treated to a field that includes three-time world champion Sage Kimzey of Strong City, Oklah. Kimzey recently added $20,000 to his bank account after conquering leading PBR World Champion Bull contender Pearl Harbor, owned by Chad Berger, for 92 points in an exhibition showdown on July 1 in Mandan, N.D. Kimzey will face more stiff competition in Salt Lake City with Utah brothers Joe and Josh Frost of Randlett and Tim and Tyler Bingham of Honeyville. They will all be trying to leap frog current world standings leader Garrett Smith of Rexburg, Idaho.

The WPRA Barrel Racing qualifier race on July 18, will christen the new arena with the top four finishers qualifying for the Days of '47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo for the Saturday night performance. These ladies will face some fast competitors led by WPRA World Standings leader Tiany Schuster who has already won $163,433 in 2017, along with 2016 reserve world champion Amberleigh Moore, and two-time world champion Brittany Pozzi Tonozzi, who won the most money of any WPRA member over the Fourth of July week, known in rodeo as Cowboy Christmas.

The top two in each discipline from each day will advance to the Gold Medal Round on July 24. The Gold Medal Round, featuring the top eight in each discipline, will compete in a sudden-death format with the winner collecting a Gold Medal and $50,000 cash that will count towards the PRCA and WPRA world standings that determine Wrangler NFR qualifiers and world champions. This payout marks the largest one-day payout in the PRCA regular season and will be the most anticipated stop on the Road to Vegas.

The official dedication of the Days of '47 Arena will be on Wednesday, July 19 at 7 p.m. with a performance by the Mormon Tabernacle Choir. The July 24th Gold Medal Round will be televised on CBS Sports Network.

Tickets are still available starting as low as $14 each at smithstix.com. For more information on the event visit www.daysof47cowboygames.com.