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Tie-down roper Durfey wins Wrangler ProRodeo Tour




PUYALLUP, Wash. – Tyson Durfey has been in a battle all season with Tuf Cooper and Shane Hanchey to claim the regular-season tie-down roping crown and be the front-runner headed to the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas in December.

Durfey closed the gap on the top spot after winning the Justin Finale at the Washington State Fair Pro Rodeo in Puyallup on Sunday, claiming his first Wrangler ProRodeo Tour title and his first buckle from Puyallup in the process.

Durfey won the final round in 7.4 seconds, edging Cooper Martin by one-tenth of a second. Durfey also took second in the semifinals in 8.1 seconds.

The 2016 world champion tie-down roper took home $15,109 for the four-day rodeo.

“I had never won the Tour,” Durfey said. “Anytime you win it feels good. But when you win a tour with cumulative points all season that lead to the finale it just means you roped a little bit better, maybe had some good runs and drew some good cattle. Luckily, I did all the above, and I’m very thankful for it.”

As of Sept. 4, Durfey was second in the PRCA | RAM World Standings with $109,904, trailing only Cooper (the reigning All-Around world champion) by less than $3,000 and holding off Shane Hanchey (the 2013 world champion tie-down roper) by about $2,000.

After Sunday, Durfey is only $473 short of the number one spot, after all three were in the semifinals and won money in previous rounds.

Durfey won $11,000 on Sunday alone.

“I’m thankful for competition like Tuf and like Shane Hanchey,” he said. “They make you elevate to be a better athlete.”

Durfey was on his horse Nikko.

“I won the world on him in 2016, and I’ll be riding him at the National Finals again,” said Durfey, 34. “He’s just an iron horse. He carried me to a world title, and it means the world to be able to ride a horse of that caliber at a rodeo of this caliber.”

Durfey, who competes in the Columbia River Circuit, was excited to win Puyallup for the first time.

“It’s a rodeo that’s eluded me my whole career,” he said. “This will be 11 trips to the National Finals. I’ve been here 11 or 12 or 13 times, and I’ve won second, but I had never won it. It means a lot to look at this buckle and see 30 years of practice culminate in a moment like this, so I’m extremely thankful.”

In the semifinals, bull rider Tim Bingham set a rodeo record with his 93-point ride on Bridwell Pro Rodeo’s 100x Helmet’s Boothill, also tying for the highest-scored ride of the season.

Other winners at the $471,100 rodeo were bareback rider Richmond Champion (90 points on Bridwell Pro Rodeo’s Wild N Blue); steer wrestler Curtis Cassidy (4.0 seconds); team ropers Clay Tryan/Travis Graves (4.6 seconds); saddle bronc rider Ryder Wright (89.5 points on Calgary Stampede’s Wild Cherry); barrel racer Jimmie Smith (14.41 seconds); and bull rider Parker Breding (86 points on Outlaw Buckers Rodeo’s Annika’s Pet).

 

 
 
 
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