Feild, Denny set tone with stellar rides in Mandan

Feild, Denny set tone with stellar rides in Mandan

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Four-time PRCA world bareback champion Kaycee Feild scored an 87-point ride Tuesday on opening night at the 140th Mandan Rodeo Days Rodeo. It was the second straight rodeo that the Genola, Utah, cowboy scored an 87, and given the circumstances, he’s happy to share the winner’s circle with Wyatt Denny.

 Feild’s last ride, another 87-pointer on March 30 is Austin, Texas, came with a fractured skull, fractured nasal cavity and jaw, a concussion and a small brain bleed. Feild was thrown and kicked after completing his ride and wound up in intensive care.

 Just three months later, the current PRCA bareback leader with $155,965 in earnings, Feild chose the Mandan Rodeo and a horse named Miss Denny to return to action. Denny set the tone with the first 87 and Feild, the 2018 Mandan Rodeo bareback champ, matched it with a score that could stand up through the three-day rodeo.

  “There’s a lot of opportunities this week,” Feild said of a stretch of rodeos commonly referred to as Cowboy Christmas. “Reno kicks off the Fourth of July and it goes to Prescott on (July) 7. That’s 10 days where you can go to 14 or 15 rodeos and the majority of the top guys try to get to as many as they can. You can win 30 or 35 thousand this week.”

 Miss Denny bounded from the chute and was impressive early but gave Feild a chance to spur.

“That horse is an awesome horse,” Field noted. “It was my first one back in quite a while and you can’t ask for a better horse. One you can show off on.”

 Denny, a three-time NFR qualifier worked a matching 87 out of Cactus Black, a horse that has paid out over $2 million at the National Finals Rodeo.

“Mine was basically the same,” Denny added. “They’re outstanding in front of the bucking chutes and they’re electric. You set your feet and you can show your stuff off.”

 Both cowboys knew they had draws they couldn’t pass up.

 “You usually know your stock ahead of time … if it’s going to win you money or not,” Denny said. “If you can’t win money on it there’s no reason to put your body through it.”

 Feild said knowing the stock that awaited was the reason the scores were what they were. Clayton Bigelow scored an 85, Clint Laye and Mason Clements 83s and Tilden Hooper an 81.5. Two others scored 81s.

 Five of those riders are in the top 15 of the PRCA standings.

 “Chad Berger and Dakota Rodeo do a great job,” Feild said. “They screen the stock to make sure the right stock is here for the caliber of guys and it shows in two 87s. It’s a tough rodeo.”

 And it’s only the start to a busy week. Feild rides in Livington, Mont., today; Cody, Wyo., and West Jordan, Utah on July 4, Oakley, Utah, on July 5 and Prescott, Ariz., on July 7. Denny, meanwhile, hits Red Lodge, Mont., and Cody on July 3, Belle Fourche, S.D., and the Killdeer Mountain Roundup Rodeo on July 4, St. Paul, Ore., on July 5, Oakley and West Jordan on July 6 and Prescott on July 7.

 That’s the nature of the beast. Christmas, after all, only comes twice a year.

 The Mandan Rodeo continues tonight with a final performance, followed by fireworks – not those by Mother Nature that rolled through area midway through Tuesday’s performance – on Thursday.

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