IFR 40 wraps after 4 Rounds and Canada acquires 5 Buckles!
Monday, 18 January 2010 01:41
The International Professional Rodeo Association's finals, the International Finals Rodeo in Oklahoma City is the marquee event for over 3,000 members.  Across their circuit system of dividing their almost 150 rodeos into 4 circuits, their Southern Circuit is the largest.  However, the North-East Circuit where our Canadian Contenders reside is the second largest, and also home to the largest outdoor rodeo in the IPRA, Ste. Tite, Quebec.  At the Gold Buckle Gala on Sunday night, it was announced that aside from Oklahoma, Canada was the 2nd largest contingent (Quebec-Ontario) at IFR 40 with a record 20 positions held by Canadian Qualifiers.
IFR 40 boasted a purse of $250,000 and Canada was able to accumulate over $24,000 of that, along with 5 Championship Buckles.  The final round of IFR 40 had lots of opportunities and a few of the Canuck Contenders realized their Gold Buckle conquests, and as with every Rodeo, there were some Championship Dreams dashed.  All in All, though, 12 of the 18 Canadians earned a trip to the proverbial Paywindow at IFR 40.
Bareback Bronc Riding:
The final round of IFR 40 was intense.  Tim Wilkinson of Steelville, Missouri was leading the Aggregate by 7.5 points, and had already won the 2009 IPRA Bareback Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year honours.  One of the last to compete, he made his ride and had won the IFR Aggregate by 3 or 4 points, however, they offered him a re-ride.  The Show Me State Cowboy had won the first two rounds and tied for 2nd in the 3rd go.  Exuding with confidence, he said, "I want to win the day, give me my horse." The decision could have lost him the $4,166.67 cheque for winning the aggregate, however, fortune shined down as he made another qualified ride.  Unfortunately, he scored 77 points for 6th in the round, but he was able to hold on for the win of IFR 40 by exactly 5-points.  The World Championship in Bareback Bronc Riding was won by Shawn Minor of Camden, Ohio whom had an amazing IFR in the Bareback Bronc Riding.  He qualified for IFR 40 in the number 2 spot in the World Standings and placed 4th in the 2nd Go and tied for 3rd in the 4th Go to finish 2nd in the aggregate.  The win of IFR 40 gave him the Win of the World, making this his 6th IPRA Bareback Bronc Riding World Championship.  Pat Legault of Ste. Barbe, Quebec was able to cover all four broncs at IFR 40.  He was 75 points in the 4th go to finish 4th overall in the Aggregate.  Christian Bilodeau of St. Lin, Quebec bucked off and retired with only 2 covered.  Earlier in the week, 3-time IFR Champion Bareback Rider Roger Lacasse of Mirable, Quebec was injured, subsequently turnning out of the last three rounds.
Steer Wrestling:
Canada clinched it's second World Championship in IPRA History as reigning World Champion Matt Mousseau of Dashwood, Ontario posted a 4.5 second run to tie for 2nd in the final go-round.  He finished with 20.0 on four head ending 2nd in the aggregate at IFR 40.  When all of the cheques were totalled, he earned more than enough for his second IPRA Steer Wrestling World Championship.  Most contestants would prefer to not tie, however, Mousseau's tie for second was almost bitter sweet.  Also posting a 4.5 was Alvinston, Ontario's Rod Weese.  Weese's IFR was pretty decent with him catching 3 of his 4 steers; he ended up 3rd in the aggregate at the IFR.  It was just enough to win the 2009 IPRA All Around Rookie of the Year Buckle, and more than enough for him to win the 2009 IPRA Steer Wrestling Rookie of the Year Buckle!  Round 4 was won by Garner, North Carolina's Jason Bagwell with a 4.0.  Walt Sherry of Atwood, Oklahoma won IFR 40 with 17.4 on 4-head and ended up the Reserve IPRA World Champion as well.  
Saddle Bronc Riding:
Erik Wolford, the 2005 IPRA World All Around Champion and Saddle Bronc Riding World Champion lead the Aggregate by 7.5 points going into the Final Round of IFR 40.  The champion added another buckle to the case following his 84-point ride aboard The Stuff of Broken Horn Rodeo Company to win both the 4th Go-round and the IFR 40 Saddle Bronc Riding Aggregate.  Compounded with that, he also used the points and dollars to acquire two more buckles: the IFR 40 All Around Championship and the IFR 40 Top-Money Earner buckles.  Ontop of his Buckles, $14,062.49 was his take home total.  Shawn Minor, one of biggest champions of All-Time in the IPRA finished IFR 40 on a strong note.  Already acquiring the 2009 Bareback Bronc Riding World Title earlier in the performance, he placed 3rd in the round to finish 4th in the aggregate at IFR 40.  Though he was the season-leader going into the IFR, all of his cheques shot him way into the forefront.  He ended up winning the 2009 Saddle Bronc Riding World Championship as well.  In addition, he won the most coveted buckle in Professional Rodeo, the All-Around Championship.  2009 became the first year for Minor to clinch all three: Bareback, Saddle Bronc and All Around World Championships, now taking his total to 6 Bareback World Championships (03-06, 08-09), 2 Saddle Bronc Riding World Championships (07, 09) and 5 All Around Championships (04, 06-09).  Dustin Thompson of Okotoks, Alberta bucked off in the 4th Round, ending with 150.5 on 2 head in the Aggregate.  Though he only made one cheque at IFR 40, he was able to secure the 2009 IPRA Saddle Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year buckle.  Luc Cloutier of Ste. Tite, Quebec covered with a 73, Tyler Foster of Watford, Ontario posted a 62.5 and Benoit Bouchard, also of Quebec turned out after his injury in the first-round.
Team Roping:
The 4th round of Team Roping was intense.  With mere 10ths of seconds separating the top in the Aggregate and World Title Race, it would take great roping to secure the hardware.  However, the leaders of the Aggregate after 3 pulled a no-time, opening the door for Jesse Leon and Casey Stipes of Salina, Oklahoma to win both buckles.  Going into the round they sat 2nd in the World and 2nd in the Aggregate.  A smooth 6.8 gave them 4th in the round, the IFR 40 Buckles by 8.5 seconds, and the World Titles by a fair margin.  The Canadian Contingents in Team Roping didn't fair as hot, Ross Scully and Stewart Cahill of Rockwood and Strathroy, Ontario were 20.2 to end 11th in the Aggregate, and Jeremy McCulligh also of Rockwood, Ontario was 22.3 to retire 13th in the Aggregate with his Oklahoman partner Dax Stuart.
Tiedown Roping:
Back in the second go-round, the IFR State Fair Arena Record of 7.5 was broke when Ken Bailey of Henryetta, Oklahoma roped and tied in 7.4.  Exciting at the time was the fact that the former arena record was held by Bailey's Cousin, Walt White, a 7-time IPRA World Champion Tiedown Roper of Ochelata, Oklahoma and PJ Spencer, the Reigning IPRA World Champion of Collinsville, Oklahoma.  After round #4, another World Champion is added to the speeder list after Shawn Coleman, the 2005 Tiedown World Champion also posted a 7.4 to win the round.  As for the IFR 40 Tiedown Roping Aggregate, Justin Thigpen of Waycross, Georgia was able to hold onto the lead of it following a business-type "smooth is fast" 9.9 second run.  He won the aggregate with 35.5 on 4 head, 12.5 seconds faster than the second place contender.  This became Thigpen's second IFR Title in the Tiedown Roping.  He lead the World Standings going into the IFR by a large margin, and he accumulated enough at the IFR to win his first IPRA Tiedown Roping World Championship by over $10,000!  Also having a smooth run in the final round was Rockwood, Ontario's Ross Scully.  Scully was 10.3 to finish 3rd overall in the Aggregate at IFR 40.
Cowgirl's Barrel Race:
Canada had a great shot at its first IPRA World Championship in Barrel Racing rolling into IFR 40.  Valcartier, Quebec's Sindy LaLiberte qualified for the IFR first in the World with an almost $4,000 lead in the standings.  She placed 2nd in the first round and was seated 3rd in the Aggregate rolling into the final round.  However, climbing the standings in a big way was 14-year old Mesa Leavitt of Bluegrass, Iowa.  Leavitt, was the reigning 3-time World Champion Barrel Racer (06-08) and 2-time IFR Champion (IFR 38 and IFR 39).  She was no stranger to the victory lap, especially after IFR 38 where she won all 4 go-rounds.  IFR 40 was almost as strong for the young World Champion.  She placed 3rd in the 1st Go, 4th in the 2nd Go, and won the 3rd Go.  She had jumped from 4th to 2nd in the World Standings and trailed by just under $2,900.  She lead the Aggregate by 0.28, and was ahead of World Leader Laliberte by over .6 seconds.  For Laliberte to win the World, she would need to beat Leavitt and vice-versa.  Laliberte ran a long 15.380 to wind up 11th in the Round and 6th in the Aggregate.  Leavitt ran a 14.754, the fastest time of IFR 40 to win both the IFR and World Championship in the Barrel Racing.  Mesa Leavitt has now won 4 consecutive World Championships, 3 consecutive IFR Championships, all before the age of 15.  Sindy Laliberte did end up winning the 2009 IPRA Barrel Racing Rookie of the Year title, though.  The 4th Round was a little better for Lorrainville, Quebec's Edesse Descoteau, though.  She placed 2nd with a 14.817.
Bull Riding:
In the World's most dangerous event of Bull Riding, only one contender had covered all 3-bulls.  Ramona, Oklahoma's Jared Long sat with 241 on 3-head.  A qualified ride would have been strong enough to give him the win of the World Championship and the IFR.  He bucked off Hell Yeah of 5M Rodeo Company, which kind of gave way for others to take away the Championship.  Had Canada's Luke McCoag rode for 87.5, he could have won the IFR.  Had Rosalia, Kansas's Carrson Hiatt, the now 2009 IPRA Bull Riding Rookie of the Year posted a 90, he would have won the IFR.  Had Raymond Postlethwait of Adrian Michigan post an 82, he would have won the IFR.  Postlethwait, the first contestant to qualify for the IFR at both ends of the Arena rode Charlie's Pet of Oubre Rodeo Company for 65 points to place 4th in the round, and thus 2nd in the Aggregate.  This made Jared Long the 2009 IPRA World Champion Bull Rider and IFR 40 Champion by 16-points in the Aggregate.  Both Canadians Ian Charman and Luke McCoag bucked off in the final Round.  McCoag though placed 4th in the Aggregate with 153 on 2.
IFR 40 was record setting with the number of Canadians qualified, on top of the dollars and hardware acquired in Oklahoma, City.  Other notable awards included IPRA Outdoor Rodeo of the Year awarded to Ste. Tite, Quebec, with the festival winning for the 11th consecutive time. The Rawhide Rodeo Company won most active Producer and Stock Contractor in the IPRA, and #48 High Time Gal of Rawhide Rodeo Company won the 2009 Saddle Bronc Horse of the Year World Championship.
Team Canada Buckle Tally:
Matt Mousseau, Dashwood, Ontario - 2009 IPRA World Champion Steer Wrestler
Rod Weese, Alvinston, Ontario - 2009 IPRA All-Around Rookie of the Year
Rod Weese, Alvinston, Ontario - 2009 IPRA Steer Wrestling Rookie of the Year
Dustin Thompson, Okotoks, Alberta - 2009 IPRA Saddle Bronc Riding Rookie of the Year
Sindy Laliberte, Valcartier, Quebec - 2009 IPRA Barrel Racing Rookie of the Year
Team Canada by the Bucks:
Matt Mousseau, Dashwood, Ontario $4974.91
Ross Scully, Rockwood, Ontario $3645.82
Luke McCoag, Port Rowan, Ontario $3385.42
Rod Weese, Alvinston, Ontario $3385.41
Sindy Laliberte, Valcartier, Quebec $1562.5
Edesse Descoteau, Lorrainville, Quebec $1562.5
Dustin Thompson, Okotoks, Alberta $1302.08
Tyler Foster, Watford, Ontario $1302.08
Christian Bilodeau, St-Lin, Quebec $1041.67
Pat Legault, Ste. Barbe, Quebec $1041.67
Ian Charman, Pontypool, Ontario $520.83
Stewart Cahill, Strathroy, Ontario, $520.83
Roger Lacasse, Mirabel, Quebec $0
Luc Cloutier, Ste. Tite, Quebec $0
Tim Kemp, Kitchener, Ontario $0
Benoit Bouchard, Ste. Sophie, Quebec $0
Pedro Giguere, Thetford Mines, Quebec $0
Jeremy McCulligh, Rockwood, Ontario $0   
Team Canada Final Standings:
Bareback Bronc Riding
Christian Bilodeau, St-Lin, Quebec, 8th in IPRA, 11th in IFR,  $1041.67 in IFR Earnings
Pat Legault, Ste. Barbe, Quebec, 11th in IPRA, 4th in IFR,  $1041.67 in IFR Earnings
Roger Lacasse, Mirabel, Quebec, 6th in IPRA, 15th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Steer Wrestling
Matt Mousseau, Dashwood, Ontario, 1st in IPRA, 2nd in IFR,  $4974.91 in IFR Earnings
Rod Weese, Alvinston, Ontario, 7th in IPRA, 3rd in IFR,  $3385.41 in IFR Earnings
Tyler Foster, Watford, Ontario, 15th in IPRA, 14th in IFR,  $1302.08 in IFR Earnings
Tim Kemp, Kitchener, Ontario, 9th in IPRA, 6th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Saddle Bronc Riding
Dustin Thompson, Okotoks, Alberta, 11th in IPRA, 11th in IFR,  $1302.08 in IFR Earnings
Luc Cloutier, Ste. Tite, Quebec, 7th in IPRA, 8th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Benoit Bouchard, Ste. Sophie, Quebec, 10th in IPRA, 14th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Pedro Giguere, Thetford Mines, Quebec, 14th in IPRA, 13th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Tyler Foster, Watford, Ontario, 15th in IPRA, 12th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Team Roping: Heading
Ross Scully, Rockwood, Ontario, 14th in IPRA, 11th in IFR,  $520.83 in IFR Earnings
Jeremy McCulligh, Rockwood, Ontario, 15th in IPRA, 13th in IFR,  $0 in IFR Earnings
Team Roping: Heeling
Stewart Cahill, Strathroy, Ontario,, 9th in IPRA, 11th in IFR,  $520.83 in IFR Earnings
Tiedown Roping
Ross Scully, Rockwood, Ontario, 5th in IPRA, 3rd in IFR,  $3124.99 in IFR Earnings
Cowgirl Barrel Racing
Sindy Laliberte, Valcartier, Quebec, 2nd in IPRA, 6th in IFR,  $1562.5 in IFR Earnings
Edesse Descoteau, Lorrainville, Quebec, 11th in IPRA, 5th in IFR,  $1562.5 in IFR Earnings
Bull Riding
Luke McCoag, Port Rowan, Ontario, 6th in IPRA, 4th in IFR,  $3385.42 in IFR Earnings
Ian Charman, Pontypool, Ontario, 14th in IPRA, 10th in IFR,  $520.83 in IFR Earnings
Official results are posted at: www.iprarodeo.com/IFR40Results.html