CALGARY, A.B. — After making the Top 10 at last year’s Calgary Stampede, Hudson’s Hope native Jake Watson wasn’t able to repeat this year.
Watson competed against a tough group of ten riders in the Saddle Bronc’s Pool A at the Stampede this year. Watson went three for four during the qualifying stage, recording a 71.50 on Friday July 7th, back to back 75.00 scores on July 8th and 9th, before being disqualified in the fourth round of the preliminaries. Watson ended up finishing in 9th place out of the 10 Pool A competitors.
After not earning a bye into Showdown Sunday, Watson competed for one of two wildcard spots in the Top 10 on Saturday. Unfortunately, his third 75.00 score wasn’t enough to make it into Sunday’s finals, as Cort Scheer and Ryder Wright qualified with scores of 88.00 and 85.50 respectively.
In the finals on Sunday, Big Valley, Alberta’s Zeke Thurston scored a 90.00 in the semi-final, and a 92.00 in the Final Four to win the Stampede’s Saddle Bronc competition for the record third straight year. Thurston became the first saddle bronc rider and third rodeo contestant ever to win an event for three straight years.