Western Slope will be represented at Rodeo All-Star competition
A handful of Western Slope cowboys and cowgirls, including barrel racer Sammi Bessert of Fruita, will be represented at the first Rodeo All-Star competition, set for April 4-6 at the National Western Complex in Denver.
“I’m excited about it,” said Bessert, who has been among the top 25 barrel racers in the country the past few years. “This is a good opportunity for us to get a little bit more exposure.”
The Rodeo All-Star competition has a total prize package of $140,000. However, unlike rodeos sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboy’s Association, winnings there don’t count toward the professional standings and selection to the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas in December.
Still, Bessert said, “It’s nice because it’s a way for us to make a little more money and interact with fans more.”
Most of the participants for the Rodeo All-Star competition were invited based on their standings in sanctioned rodeos, as Bessert was. However, 14 contestants were voted in by fans registering their favorites in online voting. Among them is barrel racer C.J. Vondette of Rifle, who received more online votes than any other contestant.
In addition to Bessert and Vondette, other competitors from the Western Slope are: Jody Sheffield of Delta in barrel racing; and Tarren Calhoon of Hot Sulpher Springs and Jake Booco of Hayden in bull riding.
Tickets for the Rodeo All-Star competition are available at Murdoch’s stores. More information can be found at http://www.rodeoallstar.com.