June 13th, 2024

Gardner shines on showdown Saturday

By Ryan McCracken on July 30, 2018.

Jacob Gardner, of Dawson Creek, B.C., rides Tippin Point in the bull riding event at Saturday's Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede rodeo.


When Jacob Gardner saw the draw for Saturday’s Medicine Hat Exhibition and Stampede bull riding finale, he couldn’t help but get excited.

Having been on the back of Tippin’ Point a few times in the past, the Dawson Creek cowboy says he knew if he did his part the bull would put him right in the money — and the pair did exactly that with a Saturday-best 82-point ride to close out the rodeo.

“I knew if I did my job right the outcome would be good,” said Gardner, adding the season has had its ups and downs, but Saturday’s performance certainly helps keep things upbeat. “This summer I’ve been having a little bit of tough luck here and there but the main thing is to keep positive and keep trying. Eventually things will come together.”

Gardner joined the professional bull riding circuit four years ago, but he’s been riding bulls since the age of 12. While he says it was a bit daunting to get on the bull at such a young age, he did it on a gradual learning curve.

“It was a little intimidating, but the bulls aren’t as rank and as mean as the ones we’re getting on at these pro rodeos. They’re for beginners,”said Gardner, who also competed in steer wrestling. “That’s how you progress, you start small and grow big.”

Gardner’s 82 points was good enough for fifth in the overall standings after Saturday’s third and final performance — with JBMoentaking top spot following Thursday’s 84.5-point ride and Cody Coverchuk earning second at 84.

“We’re up against the best guys in Canada,” said Gardner. “It’s tough to get in the money, you’re competing against some really good guys. Guys have to try really hard to get a piece of the pie.”

Ty Taypotat’s 87.5-point bareback ride from Thursday held up as the best following Saturday’s event, though Seth Hardwick managed to climb into a tie for second with Luke Creasy and Caleb Bennett following an 86.5-point outing.

Kody Dollery took over first place in the steer wrestling event with Saturday’s time of 4.2 seconds — shaving one-tenth off Tanner Milan and Chance Butterfield’s previous best of 4.3 to take the win.

Big Valley’s Zeke Thurston held on for the saddle bronc victory with Friday’s 87-point ride on Spanish Pair, while Layton Green took second Saturday with 85 points and Jake Finlay finished third at 83.

Fourteen-year-old Taylor Manning kept the top time in ladies barrel racing following Saturday’s event. The rising star clocked in at 17.467 seconds Friday — beating Carman Pozzobon’s second-place time of 17.469 by just two-thousandths of a second.

Caleb Anderson and Cory Kidd took over the top of the team roping leaderboard with a time of 5.8 seconds Saturday, while Keely and Logan Bonnett’s took second at 6.2.

Blair Burk’s tie-down roping run of 8.2 seconds earned Thursday held up as time, while Morgan Grant held on for second at 8.4 seconds and Matt Shiozawa took thirdSaturday at 8.5 seconds.

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