GREAT FALLS — Parker Breding of Edgar and Trego’s Gerald Eash were the big winners in the first round of bull riding at the Montana Pro Rodeo Circuit Finals on Friday night.
The MPRC Finals, which continues through Sunday afternoon, determines the 2017 year-end champions. The Finals and year-end champions qualify for the National Circuit Finals Rodeo, April 5-8, in Kissimmee, Florida.
Breding and Eash were the only two bull riders to post qualified rides. Breding, a two-time national circuit champion, won the round with 84 points for $3,165. Eash was second with 80 points for $2,589. Ground money was added to their winnings. Breding leads the year-end standings.
Jesse Kruse of Great Falls and Melstone’s Sage Newman are 1-2 in the saddle bronc standings and stayed there with a 1-2 finish Friday night. Kruse, the 2009 PRCA world champion, won with an 82-point ride while Newman was just a half-point behind at 81.5. Newman is a former national high school champion.
Other first-round winners were: Troy Vaira and J.R. Vezain, bareback, 87.5 points; Bridger Chambers, steer wrestling, 4.2 seconds; Dustin Bird-Chase Tryan, team roping, 4.4 seconds; Logan Hofer, tie-down roping, 9.4 seconds; Becky Fuson, barrel racing, 13.46 seconds.
There were no qualified rides in bareback or saddle bronc in the High School Challenge.