Rodeo features many of the top cowboys and cowgirls in the world

Many of the top cowboys and cowgirls in the world are descending on Redmond for this weekend’s Columbia River Circuit Finals CENTRAL OREGONIAN FILE PHOTO - Team ropers, Brandon Beers, right, and Jim Ross Cooper, compete at the 2011 National Finals Rodeo. The duo are roping together again after Beers took much of the 2012 season off, and are the favorites to win this years Columbia River Circuit Finals. The Circuit Finals start tonight and run through Saturday inthe Hooker Creek Events Center at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds.

The finals, which run tonight through Saturday at the Hooker Creek Events Center in Redmond, feature a blend of both seasoned professional as well as up-and-coming cowboys.

Events to watch include bareback riding and team roping, which are both loaded with athletes who have qualified for the National Finals Rodeo.

Bareback riders R.C. Landingham, Austin Foss, Ryan Gray, Steven Peebles, and Bobby Mote are all in the top 15 in the world standings. Mote currently leads Peebles by just over $4,000 dollars in the event.

Team ropers Brandon Beers of Powell Butte, and Jim Ross Cooper of Monument, N.M. have a huge lead on the rest of the field. After reaching the National Finals Rodeo in 2011, Beers and Cooper did not rope together last year. This year they are together again and are not only expected to win the circuit finals, but are real threats to win the world championship. The duo are currently third in the world standings. Other team ropers to watch are Charly Crawford of Prineville and Jade Corkill of Fallon, Nev. who are second in the circuit, and Riley and Brady Minor, who are sitting in third place. Both teams have also qualified for the NFR.

Three other Crook County athletes have also qualified for this weekend’s finals. Steer wrestlers Sean Santucci and Christian Radabaugh are sitting in eighth and 11th place respectively in the standings. Jake Rinehart of Highmore, S.D. has a nearly $7,000 lead in the event over second place Trevor Knowles of Mount Vernon, Ore.

The final local athlete entered in the event is barrel racer Tami Semas of Prineville, who is currently eighth in the standings. Pamela Capper of Cheney, Wash. has an insurmountable lead in the event with $40,549.61 on the year compared to $13,857.10 for second place Cindy Woods of Newberg, Ore.

Other athletes to watch for this weekend include bull riders Cody Campbell, Brady Portenier, and Paul Coppini, who are less than $2,000 apart going into the finals. Saddle bronc riders Ben Londo and Dustin Flundra are also locked in a tight race as are steer ropers Tom Sorey and Jade Corkill. Post’s Mike Beers is currently third in the event.

Champions in each event will be crowned following Saturday evening’s 7:30 p.m. final performance.

Finals information

The Columbia River Circuit Finals will have three performances in the Hooker Creek Events Center at the Deschutes County Fairgrounds in Redmond. Performances are scheduled for 7:30 p.m., Friday and Saturday nights and for 1 p.m. Saturday afternoon. Gates open two hours before each performance.

Tickets are $15 per person for Friday and Saturday evenings. Saturday afternoon is Les Schwab family day with tickets costing $10 for adults and children 18 and under admitted free.

Tickets are available at Prineville Mens Wear, Big R in Redmond, and the BootBarn in Bend. Tickets are also available at the gate and online at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For more information, go to the website or call 509-953-4053.

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