NFR staying in Las Vegas through 2014

2005-12-10T23:00:00Z NFR staying in Las Vegas through 2014JOE KUSEK Of The Gazette Staff The Billings Gazette
December 10, 2005 11:00 pm  • 

The National Finals Rodeo is extending its stay in Las Vegas and Canadian rodeos will once again count in the world standings.

Those were two of the major announcements concerning the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association.

The PRCA is extending its existing contract for the NFR another five years, keeping it in Las Vegas through 2014.

The previous contract was set to expire following the 2009 NFR.

The terms call for an annual $1 million dollar guarantee to the PRCA from Las Vegas Events, while the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority has tentatively agreed to $1 million in annual sponsorship with the PRCA to promote the NFR and Las Vegas at PRCA-sanctioned rodeos.

The LVE will also continue to guarantee the purse and all the expenses for the NFR.

"In a somewhat unpredictable economy, this agreement guarantees that the showcase event in our sport of professional rodeo will remain in the great city of Las Vegas an additional five years, while also guaranteeing the PRCA a $2 million annual payment,” said Troy Ellerman, the PRCA commissioner in a released statement.

"This agreement is a winner for everyone involved, including ProRodeo's world-class contestants, our loyal sponsors and rodeo fans everywhere.”

The NFR purse will escalate from $5.25 million this year to $6.375 million by 2014.

Also, starting this year, each NFR contestant will receive $10,000. Last year, each qualifier received $6,197. The amount will reach $14,500 by 2014.

The agreement between LVE and PRCA was predicated on one schedule change.

The 10-performance NFR will now begin on a Thursday and end on a Saturday night. Previously, the NFR started on the first Friday of December and closed on a Sunday afternoon.

The NFR has been in Las Vegas since 1985.

Canadian agreement

The PRCA and the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association have reached a one-year deal to co-approve rodeos for 2006.

Back in August, the PRCA severed all ties with the CPRA, announcing that money won in Canada would not count in the PRCA world standings.

That impacted cowboys and cowgirls from all over the United States, but particularly from Montana, who go north many times during the spring and summer to compete.

Harlem team roper Shane Schwenke won approximately $30,000 this year in Canada, while Sidney steer wrestler Beau Franzen won the both the average and $50,000 bonus round at the Calgary Stampede.

According to the Calgary Herald, the agreement is not binding to the approximately 60 rodeos in Canada. If the Canadian rodeos don't want PRCA approval, the prize money will only count in the Canadian standings.

The major Canadian rodeos - Cloverdale, Innisfail, Wainwright, Ponoka, Medicine Hat, Strathmore and Armstrong are expected to pay both administrative fees to the PRCA and CPRA to have their money count on both sides of the border and keep attracting the U.S. competitors.

Team roping is also mandatory for every Canadian rodeo seeking PRCA approval.

The Calgary Stampede announced earlier it was breaking away from both the PRCA and CPRA to run its own show. The Calgary Stampede plans to feature the top 20 in each event and will pay the expenses of the cowboys and cowgirls to compete, along with annual bonus round.

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