By: Jason "TEX" Hetland
April 17 2012
Excitement was in the air as the National Federation of Professional Bull Riders (NFPB) and Bull Riders Of America (BOA) converged upon Rochester for the 16th annual “Bull Riding Challenge”. The arena was packed full with over 2000 fans as this great event sponsored by Valley Featherlite began.
Barnes Rodeo Company of Cherokee, IA provided some of the rankest stock seen in a long time. Along with the great stock were many notable names within the rodeo industry as well. Pro Rodeo Announcer Chris Pyle and 2011 WNFR Barrel Man Rockin’ Robbie Hodges kept the crowd entertained all night long with their commentary and wild antics to boot. Along with these well-known names were bull riders such as Chance Roberts, Craig Sasse and Davey Dyke. The cowboy power in town for the weekend was tremendous and ended with the ever popular “Bull Poker” which is always a sure crowd pleaser.
Once the bull riding was done, the fans were treated to some great entertainment provided by well- known and Bud Light sponsored band, Lost Highway.
The bull power was front and center Saturday as there were only eight qualified rides in the long-go round. The riders that came from six states had their hands full trying to cover their counterparts for the entire 8 seconds. Once the long-go was done, there was a tie for the lead score (83.5) between Levi Stepp and Timothy Vaughan. The remaining riders scored as high as 78.5 and as low as 76.5 but all made it back to the Championship Round. In the Championship Round only three of the ten riders were able to cover their bulls for the entire mandated time. After all the scores were tallied up it was Ryan Schumacher that was the winner of this $4,000 added event here in Rochester MN.
If you are interested in witnessing great cowboys and entertainers this event has already been scheduled for next year. The 17th Annual Rochester Bull Riding Challenge will be held on April 5 & 6, 2013 starting at 7:30 each evening at the Holmstead County Fairgrounds. You can also visit them at www.rochesterbullriding.com to stay up to date with entries and entertainment for the next year as well!