By Emily Jaycox For the Independent
Twelve-time Canadian Champion, and currently No. 1 in the world steer wrestling standings, Donalda resident Curtis Cassidy clinched his spot in the Canadian Finals Rodeo (CFR) with his wins in Calgary this weekend.
The Grass Roots Pro Rodeo Final was held at Calgary Stampede Park on Sept. 27 and 28.
Cassidy rose from twelfth in the Canadian rankings to sixth place, after his two-third split in the first round and his second place finish in round two.
With his winnings of $4, 218, he qualifies for the CFR in steer wrestling and tie-down roping.
“Calgary really helped my cause with steer wrestling,” said Cassidy.
The cowboy also competed in the Hanna Pro Rodeo from Sept. 28 to 30.
“Hanna was no good for me,” said Cassidy.
“I had no time in both events – I missed my steer and I missed my calf.”
Having already qualified for the CFR with his winnings in Calgary though, it didn’t affect his standings.
The CFR is being held at the ENMAX Centrium in Westerner Park in Red Deer for the first time this year, from Oct. 30 to November 4.
“I’m excited about making it again this year and competing again,” said Curtis.
Cassidy has had a good season, with 10 wins in Canadian and American rodeos.
Among his 2018 highlights are wins at the Washington State Fair Pro Rodeo, the Oldstoberfest in Olds, the RAM Wilderness Circuit Finals Rodeo in Heber City, UT, and the Grande Prairie Stompede.
A champion cowboy also needs a champion horse, or two.
Two of Cassidy’s horses were honoured in the 2018 contract and CFR personnel awards.
Tyson, 14-years-old, has been named Steer Wrestling Horse of the Year with honours.
“That was a pretty cool honour for the horse.”
Tyson is Cassidy’s main mount for Steer Wrestling. He rode him for all of the Canadian rodeos this year, and a good amount of the ones he competed in, in the States as well.
“Your horse is a huge part of your event … having a really good horse under you just gives you that many more opportunities to win,” said Cassidy.
“That’s what a cowboy needs.”
Stick, his 20-year-old sorrel gelding, was named the Tie-Down Horse of the Year. He was awarded the same honour in 2012.
“That was pretty neat for him to be 20 and win it again, “ he said.
“I feel good; I had a good season, I have good horses.”