SAVING THE BEST FOR LAST
By C.J. Gish
Observer Staff Writer
ELGIN Jeff Rupert made sure the Elgin Stampede spectators went home Sunday with a performance they wouldnt forget.
The Jerome, Idaho, cowboy was the final bull rider in the last event of the day and stayed with the hard-bucking bull named True Grit for an 81-point ride, tops at the two-day rodeo.
Thats as good of a bull as youre ever going to get, Rupert said. I had him at Reno before. Hes a perfect bull.
Rupert, though, didnt think the ride was impressive enough to net him the top points at the 55th annual Stampede and a check for $1,044.88.
I didnt know (the score) would be that high, but I thought it would be close enough, he said.
Ruperts ride wasnt the only winner Sunday. Unlike last year, where no one was able to knock off any of Saturdays top performances, the day started with someone who had a change in luck.
Summervilles Russ Smith, who had finished last the past two years in the Suicide Race, won.
Its my third year participating and Ive finished dead last every time except this time, Smith said. Its about time (I won). The horse Ive been training is really good and he was ready.
Rodeo clown Randee Munds, last years Suicide Race winner, finished second.
Brian McPherson finished third, but did it the hard way. McPhersons saddle broke on the way to the arena and the Wilsonville man fell from his horse, hitting the back of his head on the rear bumper of a parked car.
McPherson, after being looked over by medical personnel, walked into the arena to officially finish the race.
Another cowboy who had a first at the Stampede was Josephs Scotty Wright, who won the bareback riding on a horse called Hello Dolly.
This is the first time Ive ever won in Elgin, and Ive been coming here for 15 years, Wright said.
Wright scored 76 points on his winning ride. Good for $1,060.78.
Other Sunday winners included Shawn Franklin of Wetunka, Okla., in the calf roping with a time of 8.8 seconds. Fossils Todd McKay topped the saddle bronc riding with a 76-point score.
Jason Eiguren of Jordan Valley and Dusty Morse of Odgen, Utah, caught their steer in 5.5 seconds in the team roping.
Saturday performances that stood included Brad Gleason of Touchet, Wash., with his 4.3-second steer-wrestling time. Pendletons Debbie Stahl had the best ride of the weekend in barrel racing at 17.65 seconds, and John Alps of Madras won the first go-round and best average in the steer roping.
Ronnie Hyde won All-Around Cowboy honors by earning $1,128.96 with placings in the calf and team roping.
All-Around Cowboy Ronnie Hyde, Bloomington, Ind.
Bareback riding 1. Scotty Wright, Joseph, on Hello Dolly, 76 points, $1,060.78; 2. Brandon Martin, Echo, 73, 803.62; 3/4 (split) Andy Bolich, Head, Wash., and Mark Barkley, Redmond, 72, 482.18; 5/6 (split) Sean Culver, Grandview, Wash., and Lee Lantz, Molalla, 71, 192.88.
Calf roping 1. Shawn Franklin, Wetunka, Okla., 8.8 seconds, $1,473.70; 2/3 (split) Seth Hopper, Stanfield, and Clint Akins, Aubrey, Texas, 9.8, 1,092.58; 4/5 (split) Jeff Cohelo, Long Creek, and Ronnie Hyde, Bloomington, Ind., 10.5, 584.41; 6 (split) Richard Eiguren, Jordan Valley, and Shane Erickson, Yelm, Wash., 12.2, $127.05.
Saddle bronc riding 1. Todd McKay, Fossil, on Fools Gold, 76 points, $1,236.84; 2/3/4 (split ) Mark Gage, Jordan Valley, Gary Alger, Pendleton, and Jeremy Ivie, Sheridan, Wyo., 74, 687.13; 5/6 (split) Jeb Knox, Prosser, Wash., and Sam MacKenzie, Jordan Valley, 73, 224.88.
Steer wrestling 1. Brad Gleason, Touchet, Wash., 4.3 seconds, $1,452.61; 2. Trevor Knowles, Mt. Vernon, 4.9, 1,202.16; 3. Diehl Hiner, North Powder, 6.1, 951.71; 4. Jace Davis, Adrian, 6.5, 701.26; 5/6 (split) Jeff Green, Pendleton and B.J.Taruscio, Missoula, Mont., 7.2, 350.63.
Team roping 1. Jason Eiguren, Jordan Valley, and Dusty Morse, Ogden, Utah, 5.5 seconds, $1,089.10; 2. Jason Stewart, Royal City, Wash., and Bucky Campbell, Benton City, Wash., 6.4, 816.83; 3. Ricky Hyde, Mt. Vernon, Ariz., and Ronnie Hyde, Bloomington, Ind., 6.5, 544.55; 4. John Opie, Crane, and J.W. Rose, Burns, 7.2, 272.27.
Bull riding 1. Jeff Rupert, Jerome, Idaho, on True Grit, 81 points, $1,044.78; 2. Tom Clark, Terrebonne, 75, 791.50; 3. Marcus Michaelis, Caldwell, Idaho, 73, 569.88; 4. Ty Portenier, Caldwell, Idaho, 69, 379.92; 5. Shawn Waite, Kuna, Idaho, 68, 221.62.
Steer roping (first go-round) 1. John Alps, Madras, 13.6 seconds, $926.53; 2. Tom Sorey, Pendleton, 14.4, 694.90; 3. Ty Zuber, Mead, Wash., 18.5, 463.27; 4. Jack Purchase, Pendleton, 20.2, 231.63. (Second go-round) 1. Joe Bartlett, Eugene, 12.6, 926.53; 2. Dave Inman, Colfax, Wash., 15.8, 694.90; 3. J.R. Olson, Sheridan, Wyo., 16.1, 463.27; 4. Zuber, 16.3, 231.63. (Average) 1. Alps, 31.5, 926.53; 2. Zuber, 34.8, 694.90; 3. Purchase, 43.9, 463.27; 4. Bartlett, 12.6 on one, 231.63.
Barrel racing 1. Debbie Stahl, Pendleton, 17.65 seconds, $941.22; 2. Kelli Currin, Dayton, Wash., 17.70, 806.76; 3. Jaclyn Hales, Athena, 17.76, 672.30; 4. Tanya Cocco, Bellingham, Wash., 17.85, 582.66; 5. Cheyenne Allan, Maston, Wash., 17.90, 448.20; 6/7 (split) Judi MacDonald, Maple Valley, Wash., and Katie Garthwaite, Merritt, British Columbia, 17.98, 313.74; 8. Holly Richter, Starbuck, Wash., 17.99, 179.28; 9. Barbara Bartos, Abbotsford, British Columbia, 18.01, 137.46; 10. Mandy Rosenberg, Hermiston, 18.09, 89.64.
1. Russ Smith, Summerville; 2. Randee Munns, Garland, Utah; 3. Brain McPherson, Wilsonville.