Designate the titlists for the rodeo of the finals of the national circuit
The curtain has fallen on the 2021 Badlands Circuit Finals rodeo in Minot, with gold curls awarded to cowboys and cowgirls, and reserved seats at the National Circuit Finals rodeo next year.
Two sisters reached the final in first and second place in the rope break, but in the end only one was still at the top.
Rickie and Taylor Engesser of Spearfish, SD, arrived in Sunday’s round in first and second, respectively, but things didn’t go well for either cowgirl in the round.
Rickie, the younger of the two, crossed the barrier, adding a ten-second penalty to her time. “I didn’t do my job” she said. “I got angry in the box and broke the barrier. “ And Taylor isn’t doing well either, pulling a hard calf and registering a no-time.
Even with Rickie’s ten-second penalty on Sunday, she won enough in the regular season to be the year-end champion. The sisters traveled together all summer and enjoyed participating in the same rodeos.
“It is a great blessing to arrive (at the finals of the circuit) for both of us”, Rickie said. “We are competing against each other, but we are each other’s biggest supporters.
“I wanted her to win (the end of year title) as badly as she wanted me to win it”, Rickie said. “Ideally it would have been really cool if we had been tied. She is my biggest fan and my biggest blessing.
The middle title, the fastest combined times over the 3 rounds, went to nineteen-year-old Sawyer Gilbert of Buffalo, SD Gilbert, roped three calves in a combined time of 8.7 seconds to win the average championship.
She had a business plan for this year, her second qualification to the Badlands Tour Finals. “I was riding my good paint horse and wanted to take care of business. I knew if I got them roped up in all three laps they would probably pay me for it. It was my game plan.
Gilbert is also ranked second in the world rankings and is on track to qualify for the National Breakaway Roping Final, the Women’s Pro Rodeo Association’s world event in December. But it didn’t go to his head. “You attack it one day at a time. It’s one race at a time. In the end, it all comes down to one calf.
She won over $ 50,000 in the world rankings this year, which prompted her to quit college and rodeo full time. “I didn’t go back (to college) this year because I wanted to be a rope escapee,” she laughed, and she probably won’t come back. “I know my mom wants me to do this, but she’s having a hard time discussing it now.”
A perennial bareback riding powerhouse won both the year-end title and the middle title in the weekend’s Badlands Circuit Final rodeo. Ty Breuer of Mandan rode three horses for a combined 250 points to sweep the average and end the season with over $ 21,000 in prize money.
He had the year-end title sewn up even before the Tour Finals started, but winning is always special. “It always feels good to win here” he said.
The number of bareback riders at this year’s rodeo was reduced from nine to three, due to injuries or surgeries for other competitors, and Breuer missed having more competitors. “It’s a shame that the other bareback riders got injured this year, that’s for sure. “ he said. “It’s always more fun when your buddies are around and you can roll against them.”
Breuer has won the year-end title or the middle title a total of seven times, from 2014 to 2018. He hasn’t failed to qualify for a circuit final since 2009, except last year, due from a bicep injury. The 31-year-old has also made five appearances in the national rodeo final, the professional rodeo world championship, and finished thirteenth in the world rankings in 2017.
In bull riding, Chance Schott reiterated his year-end titlist title for the circuit. Even though McLaughlin’s man, SD only made two of three qualifying races, he made enough money to earn end-of-year accolades.
“I had a few good Sutton sires (Rodeo Co.) and I couldn’t take advantage of them. “ in rounds one and two, he said. “But I was able to clear my mind and put it all together today.”
Schott, who finished the year in the top twenty-five in the world rankings, was the 2020 end-of-year average titlist.
“This (loop) is quite special,” he said. “The first holds a special place in my heart, but I still love this one very much, just as much.”
Of the platoon of twelve bull riders, only three were able to make qualified riders on two bulls; no one covered the three bulls. Riggin Shippy of Colome, SD, finished as the bull average champion (165 points on two heads.)
Other champions include Cameron Morman, Glen Ullin, ND (end of year steer wrestling) and Riley Reiss, Manning, ND (steer wrestling average); Braden Pirrung, Hartford, SD and Coley Nichols, Kinnear, Wyo. (in team, end of year) and Cameron Irwin, Buffalo, Wyo. and Cash Hetzel, Lemmon, SD (team, average); Jade Blackwell, Rapid City, SD (saddle horse riding, end of year) and Ty Manke, Rapid City, SD (saddle horse riding, medium); Trey Young, Dupree, SD (tie rope, both titles); and Jessica Routier, Buffalo, SD (barrel races, year-end) and Amanda Welsh, Gillette, Wyo. (barrel races, average);
The Badlands Rookie of the Year award went to Riley Curruchet, Kaycee, Wyo .; the Badlands All-Around was won by Riley Wakefield, O’Neill, Neb. Deadwood, SD’s Days of ’76 rodeo won the Badlands Circuit Rodeo Committee of the Year title.
The year-end champion is the cowboy / cowgirl who won the most money throughout the regular season on the Badlands Tour. The average champion is the cowboy / cowgirl who won the most money at the rodeo which takes place this weekend, October 8-10, in Minot.
The year-end and middleweight champions will represent the Badlands Circuit at the National Circuit Finals rodeo, to be held in 2022. If the same person has won both titles, the second person in the year-end race qualifies for the national championship. Circuit finals rodeo.