Sizzling rodeo action along with sizzling temperatures will be on hand for the 58th Annual Chief Joseph Days Rodeo. Rip-roaring action is scheduled to start today, Thursday, July 24 at 7 p.m. with performances every night through Saturday. A Sunday matinee at 2 p.m. is also scheduled.
Approximately 255 cowboys and girls will be on hand competing for prize money that exceeds $75,000 at last year's event. Many of the cowboys rodeo on the Columbia River Circuit and at the national level.
Rodeo fans should be in for some top-notch action and should keep an eye out for a number of participants including: Two time World Bareback Champion Lan La Jeunesse from Morgan, Utah. La Jeunesse won the coveted title in 1999 and 2001 and also set the PRCA bareback single-season earnings record $185,556 in 2001, with career earnings of $629,735. La Jeunesse is ranked 11th in the world standings.
Bobby Mote the 2002 World Bareback Champion returns to the CJD Arena this weekend. Mote, of Redmond took home the first-place prize money at last years rodeo with an 80 point ride on Mr. Blue. He won the U.S. Smokeless Tobacco Co. Cup Finale in Dallas, Texas and was the regular-season earnings leader 1n 2002 earnings $174,377. His career earnings total $419,875. Mote was also the world champion runner-up in 2001.
Bareback rider Cody Jesse from John Day is ranked 15th in the world. Jessie was ranked fourth in the world last year. He also won the $50,000 bonus round at the Calgary (Alberta) Stampede in 2002.
Jason Havens from Redmond has moved up to the number 18 spot in the world this year from 26th in 2002. His career earnings stand at $107,969.
1991 World Champion Clint Corey of Powell Butte rounds out the top competitors in bareback. Corey, currently ranked 22nd has won numerous titles including the Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo in Pocatello, Idaho in, 1989, 1991, 1997. He was also the Columbia River Circuit Finals aggregate champion in 1989-95, 1997, 2001.
Chief Joseph Days 2002 All Around Champion Cash Myers from Athens, Texas, will make his return to the arena in three events, steer wrestling, tie down roping and steer roping: Meyers is ranked 9th in the All Around so far this year, 12th in steer wrestling and 24th in the tie-down roping.
Meyers 2002 accomplishments include All -Around titles at La Fiesta de los Vaqueros in Tucson, Ariz. and the Walker County Fair & PRCA Rodeo in Huntsville, Texas. He is also the winner of five steer wrestling titles, two tie-down roping titles and one steer roping title during the 2002 season. Cash's career earnings stand at $662,522.
Joining Cash in the three events will be Brad Goodrich from Stanfield. Goodrich is a tie-down-roper national finalist and was the Columbia River Circuit tie-down roping champion in 1992, 1994, 1996-97 and all-around champion, 1992, 1994, 1996-97 and 2000. Goodrich's career earnings total $784,571.
Shawn Greenfield from Lakeview is currently number one in the nation in steer wrestling, making a huge leap from 19th in the world standing from last year.
Rod Lyman from Victor, Mont., fifth in the world standings holds numerous championships including the Montana Circuit steer wrestling championship in 1989, 1991, 1995, 1998, and the all-around champion, 1995.
Lyman is also a two-time winner of the $50,000 bonus round at the Calgary Stampede in Alberta, Canada. Lyman's career earnings stand at: $1,290,713. Brad Gleason, 1997 world title holder from Touchet, Wash., rounds out this stellar field.
A field of 42 bull riders will make up the always wild and dangerous event this year at CJD. Riders include: 2002 National Finalist Myron Duarte from Auburn, Wash. Duarte was second in the 2002 World Standings. 2003 highlights include Extreme Bulls in San Antonio, Texas where he scored 89 points on Salt River's Blood Sport in the semis and was bucked off Terry Walls' Red Eye to finish 10th.
Joining Duarte are Billy Burt from Missoula, Mont., who is ranked 22nd nationally and Hayden Reece who tied for the No. 1 spot last year at Chief Joseph Days.
Team ropers, B.J. Campbell (heeler) from Benton City, Wash. and Richard Eiguren (header), from Jordan Valley return to defend their 2002 CJD title. The team won the Dodge National Circuit Finals Rodeo, the Columbia River Circuit all-around and team roping champion and the all-around title at the Pendleton Round-Up last season and were ranked 19th and 18th respectively last year.
CJD will boast a field of 51 barrel racers this year which is down slightly from last years event.
Kelli Kamanski from Bellville, Texas, will head the field as the number one barrel racer in the country.
The coveted Harley Tucker Series Award will be presented on Sunday afternoon to the the cowboy or cowgirl that compiles the largest point total from four rodeos that include the Elgin Stampede,the Eastern Oregon Livestock Show in Union, the St. Paul Rodeo and the Chief Joseph Days Rodeo.