THE sports of rodeo and rugby league are probably paddocks apart, but at Bendemeer Rodeo & Campdraft on the weekend, the two combined nicely in the name of fundraising.
Riding boots were added to guernseys when three Kootingal Roosters battled out the Football Barrel Race Challenge against a trio of Bendemeer Mountain Men.
The Roosters were made up of Dale Jenner, Jeremy Moss and Ben (Ferret) Williams while riding for the northerners were Scott Saunders, Shane Rule and Matt Jenner.
After three runs, Bendemeer registered two wins to one over the Roosters.
But biggest winner on the evening was Tamworth teenager and Kootingal junior rugby leaguer for the past five years, Jaccob Trudgett (15).
Monies raised (nearing the $800 mark according to publicity officer Adam Newman) will aid his trip to France in November where he’ll be part of the Under 16 Australian Aboriginal side playing in a series of overseas matches.
After the dust had settled on the challenge, the big under-lights program continued – a feature of that program being the Peter Jenner Memorial Saddlebronc.
Riders from a wide area focused on the crown but it was 2011 Australian Bushmen’s Campdraft & Rodeo Association (ABCRA) champion Luke Morgan who finally won the trophy he’d been eyeing for some time.
Riding the Greg Smith Rodeo Company’s Miss Southern, he spurred his way to victory with 81 points.
“I’d run second or third a few times but this time finally got there,” a jubilant Morgan said at the Jenner family’s presentation.
He beat Wee Waa’s Sam Knight (riding Felicity) by only two points.
Bucking bulls were a standout in the open bullride, according to rodeo secretary Marion Reid.
“Only two of the 18 riders managed to score,” she said.
Western Australian Gerard (Big W) Oversby rode Eagle Rock to 73 points for victory over Nathan Burtenshaw (64).
And the electronic clocks went into overdrive during the timed events – particularly the ladies’ breakaway roping.
Willow Tree’s Caitlin Harris won in a lightning 2.5sec, beating her big sister Emily’s 3.5sec. Despite her quick time, Emily had to be content with equal fourth and fifth placing.