By the time the night was over, there was more dirt in the air than scores on the board.
They don’t call bull riding the toughest sport in dirt for no reason and folks in Kimberley got a good taste why Saturday night at the Kimberley Dynamiters Bull-A-Rama.
Only four cowboys managed to hang tight for eight seconds at the Kimberley Civic Centre, with six total rides scoring at the Bull Riders Canada-sanctioned event.
Reid Lozier, of 150 Mile House, B.C., was the most resilient roughstock rider of the night, scoring twice en route to collecting the event buckle and a cool $2,760.
Garrett Green, of Meeting Creek, Alta., opened the long-go festivities in promising fashion, cruising to an 82-point ride atop Fired Up.
After Green’s opening benchmark, the bovine bullies took over, launching cowboys left, right and centre onto the dirt-covered floor of the arena.
More often than not, the chute doors barely opened before the poor cowboy was sent flying skyward off the back of his mount.
A second score finally hit the board after Australian cowboy Jake Wilson rode 5 Star Whiskey to a 79-point tally.
Brian Hervey, 2013 Bull Riders Canada (BRC) National Champion, earned his place in the short-go after scoring a 76.5-point ride on Pitch Dark.
The last rider in the long-go was Lozier, who lit up the arena with an 85-point ride on Canadian Diesel.
Though the short-go was just as devastating as the long-go for the cowboys, both Lozier and Green came through with the best rides of the night, making for a great finish.
Finishing second in the long-go, Green chose Joe Schmo for his short-go ride and notched an 86.5-point ride to give himself a shot at the buckle.
For Lozier, his chosen bull was a fitting one. The 150 Mile House native rode Your Highness to an 85-point score in the long-go, good enough to give him the crown, outscoring Green by a combined margin of 170 to 168.5.
Though Green finished behind Lozier at the end of the night, the Meeting Creek cowboy came out with the bigger payday, earning a grand total of $2,835 for his efforts.
Wilson ($570) and Hervey ($285) were also paid out.
With 140 points towards the overall BRC standings, Hervey maintained his standing atop the leaderboard. The native of Brant, Alta., has collected 1,895 points and $9,089 to date, with second-place Josh Birks 780 points back.
Apart from the dirty, dusty drama in the rodeo arena, fans were entertained by the charismatic and upbeat theatrics of Jason Charters, the Get Down Rodeo Clown.
Complete with colourful attire and ever-changing outfits, Charters jumped the glass, danced in the dirt and kept the humour flowing as the night progressed.
His back-and-forth with announcer Wes Cummings kept fans entertained during lulls in the action.
Trick rider Shelby Cummings opened the evening in sparkling fashion, literally, as she dazzled fans with fireworks bursting from a Canadian flag during the singing of the national anthem.
Cummings returned later for a full-scale routine, leaving fans with jaws in the dirt.
Last, but certainly not least, the Civic Centre proved perfect for hilarious mutton busting, as 16 bold and brave local youngsters mounted skittish sheep, hanging on for dear life.
Ahead of the event, producer and promoter Guy Thompson wished to extend his thanks to the City of Kimberley and a long list of sponsors, headed by Cranbrook Dodge.
Rodeo stock was provided courtesy Big Chief/Armstrong Bucking Bulls (Stettler, Alta.), Coyote Creek Rodeo (Vernon, B.C.) and Outlaw Buckers Rodeo Corp. (Stettler, Alta.).