Cowboys to Vie for $360,000 in Prize Money in All New “Invitational Event”
The 62nd annual Cloverdale Rodeo will now be the second richest Pro Rodeo in the country. The Cloverdale Rodeo and Exhibition Association are pleased to announce that the 2008 Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair will feature a brand new “invitational” rodeo format which will showcase the top cowboys and cowgirls in the world.
“In the past, the Pro Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) and Canadian Professional Rodeo Association (CPRA) sanctioned contestants who qualified and competed in one of seven events in six rodeo performances at the Cloverdale Rodeo. The top score or time over the course of the weekend in each rodeo event would win a portion of the total prize money for that event, based on the final standings,” says Cloverdale Rodeo Chairperson Penny Smythe. “The new invitational rodeo format means the top twenty-four contestants in the 2007 Final World Standings in four rodeo events are invited to compete at Cloverdale in rodeo performances on Friday, Saturday and Sunday. On Monday, the top eight contestants in each rodeo event will compete in a very exciting 2:00pm Finals to determine the winner of the large Prize Money pay-out and Cloverdale Rodeo spurs.”
This new format marks the most significant change in the history of the Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair – with organizers anticipating even more exciting action and entertainment in the rodeo arena. Each rodeo contestant will compete twice and the combined total score/time will determine the top eight contestants for the Finals on Monday.
“We believe our traditional rodeo fans as well as new rodeo enthusiasts will come out over the May long weekend to experience the excitement of watching the world’s top cowboys and cowgirls in this new rodeo format, our 2008 Cloverdale Rodeo will be Bucking and Running with Broncs, Bulls & Barrels” says Cloverdale Rodeo and Exhibition Association President Gerry Spielmacher.
The Cloverdale Rodeo made international news in 2007 when it announced that it’s Board of Directors had decided to move away from the traditional pro rodeo format and drop three events from its program for the 2008 event – steer wrestling, tie-down roping and team roping. Eliminating these three traditional events meant the loss of official sanctioning by the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association (CPRA) and the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA).
“The decision to eliminate the three traditional rodeo events was a very tough and difficult one for our Association. We respect the heritage of pro rodeo, but for our event, in our community, it was the right decision under the circumstances,” says Rodeo Chairperson Penny Smythe. “And because we no longer have all the required pro rodeo events, we were able to refocus our prize money into the events which are truly the most popular here in Cloverdale – Bareback, Saddle Bronc and Bull Riding and Ladies Barrel Racing. The re-allotment of the prize money means we can now attract the top 24 contestants in the world in each event to the City of Surrey, and in the end, we think this new rodeo format will make for one of the most exciting pro rodeo events in the world. We’re looking forward to 2008 and are very excited to welcome our longtime rodeo fans back to Cloverdale as well as new pro rodeo supporters.”
The top 24 cowboys in the Bull Riding, Saddle Bronc and Bareback events, as well as the top 24 Ladies Barrel Racers, based on the 2007 Final World Standings, will be invited to compete at Cloverdale. The world’s number one ranked bareback rider, Bobby Mote of Culver, Oregon will be on the slate at the 2008 Cloverdale Rodeo, “every year I’ve come to Cloverdale because you know you are going to get on a good horse. Also, the fans are sure good, they know when they’ve seen a good ride or a good time, and it really helps to keep the energy up. I’m looking forward to coming up next May.” Another one of the world’s best, nine-time National Finals Rodeo barrel racing contestant Molly Powell says, “I am excited about the new format at the Cloverdale Rodeo for 2008! As a contestant, it’s refreshing to have a rodeo committee working to put more money in our pockets. Every performance should be exciting to watch and compete in!”
About the Cloverdale Rodeo:
The Cloverdale Rodeo and Exhibition Association is a non-profit association that operates the popular annual Rodeo and Country Fair each May long weekend. The 62-year-old rodeo event draws in top cowboys and cowgirls from around the world to compete. Each year over 20,000 spectators take in the rodeo performances.
The 120-year-old Country Fair is a celebration of our Country Heritage and Western Tradition with exhibits, arts and crafts competitions, horticultural displays, British Columbia’s largest traveling midway and hundreds of free with admission family events, displays, shows and attractions. Over 70,000 guests enjoy the Country Fair annually.
The Cloverdale Rodeo & Exhibition Association is also responsible for the day-to-day operations of the Cloverdale Fairgrounds. The 4-day Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair generates in excess of 5 million dollars in economic spin-off to the City of Surrey and surrounding communities.
The annual event also continues to support Breast Cancer Awareness & Research through its “Are to Tough Enough to Wear Pink” fund raising campaign. Since starting the campaign in 2006, the event has raised and donated a total of $8,900.00 to the Crystal Gala Foundation, a Fraser Valley Breast Cancer Foundation.
The 2008 Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair will run the May long weekend, May 16 to 19, 2008. For further information on the Cloverdale Rodeo and Country Fair visit: www.cloverdalerodeo.com.