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bisetti chases saddle bronc world title

Dec 10, 2023

bisetti chases saddle bronc world title

LAS VEGAS – Brody Bisetti didn’t grow up wanting to be a saddle bronc rider.

Good luck convincing the rest of his competitors at the Junior World Finals to believe that.

The 12-year-old from Clovis, New Mexico, won the second round of rookie saddle bronc on Sunday with a 77.0-point ride on 406 Rodeo’s Cash Me Outside. Bisetti also won the first round with a 72.5 and leads the average with 149.0 points on two head heading into Monday’s championship round.

Not bad for a kid who more or less stumbled into the event.

Brody Bisetti poses for a photo after winning the second round of rookie saddle bronc riding at the Junior World Finals on Sunday.

“It’s kind of funny because I started mostly by accident,” Bisetti said after his ride. “They didn’t have enough kids at this one rodeo so I just said the heck with it. I wanted to try it and I’ve just stuck with it ever since.

“I used to do different events, but they didn’t have enough kids for saddle bronc. I decided to try it and it just led me to this path.”

It’s a path that has led Bisetti to the Junior World Finals before. The sixth-grader finished as the reserve champion in the peewee division in 2019, but knows he’s in a good position to win his first world title. Kesler Harwood from East Glacier, Montana, is second in the average with a 137.5. No other rookie saddle bronc riders had two scoring rides.

“I feel a lot more comfortable here because I’ve experienced this a couple more times,” Bisetti said of competing on the big stage inside the Wrangler Rodeo Arena. “It’s just fun that we’re able to do this and that there are horses for kids our age that will help us go into the big leagues. This is just a starting point for us.

“I just think saddle bronc is the best event that’s out there,” he added. “I just love the craziness … it makes my fire spark. It’s the most fun I can have.”

Bisetti expects to keep having fun as he makes his way up the rodeo ladder. He admitted he wants to be competing with the big guys at the National Finals Rodeo “by the time I’m 18.”

It’s a lofty goal. But considering all he has accomplished since that first time he competed in saddle bronc six years ago, don’t be surprised if Bisetti isn’t nodding his head inside the chutes at the Thomas & Mack Center in 2029.

Other saddle bronc average leaders are: Coy Wilson of Red Oak, Idaho (junior); Justin England of Powell Butte, Oregon (senior); and Jase Stout of Decatur, Texas (novice).

Wilson has 129.0 points on two head and is the only junior with two rides. England won the first go-round with a 75.0 and has a 155.5 to lead Australia’s Cade Ferguson, who is second with a 141.5. Stout has a 152, with Ethan Cart of Hamshire, Texas – the defending senior saddle bronc champion – second with a 149.5.

In bareback bronc riding, both Kash Loyd of Cleburne, Texas, and Ryder Topolinski from Canada are in position to win back-to-back world titles.

Loyd won the senior division last year and is a five-time world champ. He currently leads a tight race in the novice division with a two-head total of 165.0 points. Australian Toby Deudney is No. 2 with a 163.5 and Collin Roland of Childersburg, Alabama, is third with a 162.0.

Gavin Rose of Alberta, Canada, receives some last-minute encouragement from his dad before his rookie saddle bronc Sunday at the Junior World Finals.

Topolinski has 154.0 points to lead the rookie division for the second year in a row. He has a 9.5-point lead on Hunter Hohn of Ethan, South Dakota.

Eli Espy of San Antonio, Texas, won the second go-round with an 80.0-point ride and is atop the junior division with 149.0 points. First go winner Koaltyn Ogilvie from Canada is second with a 141.0.

Average leaders in bull riding are: Huntley Jennings of Cleveland, South Carolina (10-11 division); Evan Morrison of Whitesboro, Texas (12-13); Elijah Jennings of Cleveland, South Carolina and Claydyn Jolly of Tomball, Texas (14-15); and Nate Bayous of Woodstown, New Jersey (16-18).

Bull rider Noah Lee accepts congratulations after his 81.5-point ride in the 16-18 division Sunday.

Huntley Jennings has a two-head total of 150.5 points for a 14-point lead on Ryder Topolinski. Coleman Barry of Bridgeport, Texas, had the highest-marked roughstock ride of the week with a 90.0 to win the second round.

Morrison posted his second 88.5 of the week and leads the way with a 177.0. Braxton Lynch of Milan, Tennessee, is No. 2 with a 151.0.

Elijah Jennings and Jolly both enter the championship round with a 158.0 to lead a packed field that features five other bull riders within 10 points of the leaders.

Bayous is No. 1 with 165.5 points, followed closely by Noah Lee of Azle, Texas (162.5) and Hayden Welsh of Gillette, Wyoming (162.0).

Monday’s championship round begins at 11:30 a.m. with bull riding, followed by bareback and saddle bronc at 2:30 p.m.