Thygerson Takes Top Prize Money At May Pro Rodeo

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The good news coming out of last weekend's Gary Hardt Memorial Pro Rodeo was that cowboys pocketed more than $18,000 in prize money and no one was seriously hurt or injured during the two days of wild and woolly action.

"Everything went well and we picked up a couple of new sponsors (Circle K and Earnhardt RV) that helped us out," Rodeo Boss Bill Armstrong said.

Pacen Thygerson was the top individual money winner, picking up $1,003.69 for a bull ride which scored an 80. Former world champion Cody Custer finished third with a 78 and won $778.26.

In the saddle bronc event, a score of 75 turned in by Justin Salcito was good enough for first-place honors and $562.60.

Jeffrey Collins won the bareback riding with a tally of 77 and earned $801.22. Local fans might remember Collins as the cowboy who captured the bareback title at the 1998 Oldest Continuous Rodeo. Defending world champion Mark Gomes split third in the event.

With a hefty 47 cowboys competing in steer wrestling, winner Jody Hollis earned a $1,001.04 paycheck. In the hotly contested affair that saw four contestants turn in times within five-tenths of a second of one another, Hollis' winning ET was 4.5.

The champion team-roping duo of Chad Smith and Shawn Grant hog-tied their steer in 7.1 seconds and picked up $632.41.

Preston Williams won $831.36 for a first-place showing in the calf roping. His winning time was 8.4 seconds.

In the barrel racing, Laurie Nichols was awarded $543.14 for her first-place showing.

With the Gary Hardt Memorial concluded, the local rodeo committee will focus their efforts on the 115th World's Oldest Continuous Rodeo which will be held Aug. 19 through 22.

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