Howdy Cloud reigns all over Rapid City Xtreme Bulls Tour event | TSLN.com

Howdy Cloud reigns all over Rapid City Xtreme Bulls Tour event

RAPID CITY, SD – Howdy Cloud’s long wait is finally over.

The 31-year-old Texas cowboy kicked off the ninth season of the Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls Tour, presented by B&W Hitches, with his much-desired first Tour victory.

“Ever since it’s started I’ve been on this tour,” Cloud said. “I’ve placed at a bunch of them, but never won one. It feels really good.”

Cloud’s 177.5-point mark on two head was good enough to edge Cody Gardner by 2.5 points, and he walked away with a Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls trophy guitar and Montana Silversmiths buckle – not to mention $12,042.

The format of this Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls Tour event at Rushmore Plaza Civic Center was unlike any other so far. In order to increase the payout, the entries doubled to 70 contestants and organizers divided the riders into two performances over Friday and Saturday.

Each night saw the top 10 riders advance to a short round from the pool of 35.

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On Friday night, local hero Brian Curtis, from Belle Fourche, SD, started the action with an 80-point ride on hometown rodeo producer Jim Sutton’s bull After Party. Clayton Williams, coming off a strong Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, topped that mark with an 87.5 on Calgary Stampede’s Before Dark. Cloud, however, topped them both after a ride aboard New Frontier’s Flash Point that the judges found worth 90.

“My first bull, he had a lot of up and down and then came around to the left away from my hand, and he felt really good to ride,” Cloud said.

On Saturday, NFR bull rider Chance Smart returned to Rapid City, where a frightening 2009 head injury cost him two years of competition and five surgeries. Riding without a helmet then, a bull pulled him down, hit his head and knocked him unconscious before throwing him to the ground. For months afterward he saw double, then tried to come back too soon, resulting in a variety of other injuries.

Finally feeling whole in 2011, Smart rode New Frontier Rodeo’s Cruel and Unusual for 79.5. Not pretty, but effective.

Jake Wade made the most of his rematch with Burch Rodeo’s Best of the West to score an 85. Colin McTaggert, who had to watch the Wrangler NFR from home last year, raised the bar with an 87. Kanin Asay – the last bull rider in the long round Saturday night – responded with a 90 on New Frontier’s Free Sample.

Flashing back to the short-go Friday night, Gardner – who came into the short round with an 85 – drew Southwick’s Red Eye and rode him for 90 points. Clayton Williams bucked off Upgrade, leaving only Cloud remaining. Cloud drew Edgar from the Calgary Stampede stable and had to score an 86 to pass Gardner and have a chance to win his first-ever Xtreme Bulls after eight years on tour. He scored an 87.5.

“The short round bull was one of Calgary’s that went one or two jumps after a move right out of there,” Cloud said. “Then he came around to the right, and I had a bead on him. I’d never seen him, but the guys I talked to said he usually starts to the left and then goes back right.”

For Saturday night’s short go, Asay drew Velvet Revolver, a bull he was bucked off of three years ago in Rapid City. Meanwhile, Smart drew the same bull Gardner had the previous night, Red Eye. Smart, who had seen Gardner’s ride, fell one point short of his mark but silenced any demons that may have remained from his wreck two years ago.

Asay fell short in his rematch with Velvet Revolver and Smart walked away as the high-point earner of Saturday night.

RAPID CITY, SD – Howdy Cloud’s long wait is finally over.

The 31-year-old Texas cowboy kicked off the ninth season of the Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls Tour, presented by B&W Hitches, with his much-desired first Tour victory.

“Ever since it’s started I’ve been on this tour,” Cloud said. “I’ve placed at a bunch of them, but never won one. It feels really good.”

Cloud’s 177.5-point mark on two head was good enough to edge Cody Gardner by 2.5 points, and he walked away with a Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls trophy guitar and Montana Silversmiths buckle – not to mention $12,042.

The format of this Seminole Hard Rock Xtreme Bulls Tour event at Rushmore Plaza Civic Center was unlike any other so far. In order to increase the payout, the entries doubled to 70 contestants and organizers divided the riders into two performances over Friday and Saturday.

Each night saw the top 10 riders advance to a short round from the pool of 35.

On Friday night, local hero Brian Curtis, from Belle Fourche, SD, started the action with an 80-point ride on hometown rodeo producer Jim Sutton’s bull After Party. Clayton Williams, coming off a strong Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, topped that mark with an 87.5 on Calgary Stampede’s Before Dark. Cloud, however, topped them both after a ride aboard New Frontier’s Flash Point that the judges found worth 90.

“My first bull, he had a lot of up and down and then came around to the left away from my hand, and he felt really good to ride,” Cloud said.

On Saturday, NFR bull rider Chance Smart returned to Rapid City, where a frightening 2009 head injury cost him two years of competition and five surgeries. Riding without a helmet then, a bull pulled him down, hit his head and knocked him unconscious before throwing him to the ground. For months afterward he saw double, then tried to come back too soon, resulting in a variety of other injuries.

Finally feeling whole in 2011, Smart rode New Frontier Rodeo’s Cruel and Unusual for 79.5. Not pretty, but effective.

Jake Wade made the most of his rematch with Burch Rodeo’s Best of the West to score an 85. Colin McTaggert, who had to watch the Wrangler NFR from home last year, raised the bar with an 87. Kanin Asay – the last bull rider in the long round Saturday night – responded with a 90 on New Frontier’s Free Sample.

Flashing back to the short-go Friday night, Gardner – who came into the short round with an 85 – drew Southwick’s Red Eye and rode him for 90 points. Clayton Williams bucked off Upgrade, leaving only Cloud remaining. Cloud drew Edgar from the Calgary Stampede stable and had to score an 86 to pass Gardner and have a chance to win his first-ever Xtreme Bulls after eight years on tour. He scored an 87.5.

“The short round bull was one of Calgary’s that went one or two jumps after a move right out of there,” Cloud said. “Then he came around to the right, and I had a bead on him. I’d never seen him, but the guys I talked to said he usually starts to the left and then goes back right.”

For Saturday night’s short go, Asay drew Velvet Revolver, a bull he was bucked off of three years ago in Rapid City. Meanwhile, Smart drew the same bull Gardner had the previous night, Red Eye. Smart, who had seen Gardner’s ride, fell one point short of his mark but silenced any demons that may have remained from his wreck two years ago.

Asay fell short in his rematch with Velvet Revolver and Smart walked away as the high-point earner of Saturday night.

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