Picking it up
Jesse Bail's year got off to a flying start.
It's been so-so every since.
The all-around cowboy from Camp Crook, S.D., used some big wins on the PRCA's Xtreme Bulls tour to put himself in position for an 11th trip to the National Finals Rodeo. Aside from that, it's been a bit of a rough summer for the veteran.
"I just need to get on a roll and start winning," Bail said.
After a rough start in the saddle bronc riding, Bail has picked up a couple wins -- including one on an 84-point ride in Phillipsburg, Kan., last weekend -- to help him solidify a spot amongst the all-around standing leaders.
"This summer, it's been pretty slow in both events actually," Bail said. "Bronc riding has been slow all year, but it's starting to pick up now."
Bail was one of the more prominent bronc riders to score an unremarkable ride on Sunday at the Champions Ride saddle bronc match. After taking a reride, Bail scored a 74 and sat on the sidelines for the short round with the likes of Jesse Kruse, Cody Wright, Dusty Hausauer and Toas Muncy as a pair of unheralded cowboys rode to victories.
While he's far out of the NFR chase in the saddle bronc riding, Bail is eighth in bull riding and seventh in the all-around. Of the $60,558 he's earned this year on bulls, nearly half of it -- $29,528 to be exact -- came at four Xtreme Bulls events.
Bail's biggest moneymaker this season was an $18,697 paycheck during RodeoHouston in March.
He earned an additional $6,500 there for the regular bull riding series.
During the Xtreme Bulls event, Bail took second to former world champion B.J. Schumacher in the long round, the short round and the average. His best ride was an 88.5 in the long round.
Since then, however, the road has been rough.
"I haven't drew very good here this summer," Bail said. "A guy gets to riding not as good when he starts drawing bad."
Bail said he believes winning begets winning and hopes to get on a roll heading into the fall.
"I need to start winning in both events to get back up there and keep rolling," Bail said.
Paulson hosting bull riding event Saturday in Killdeer
Beni Paulson and others around Killdeer hope to one day bring a Professional Bull Riders event to the small town.
That dream begins at 6 p.m. Saturday when Paulson hosts the Killdeer Mountain Bull Bash for area cowboys.
Paulson said it's another way to help showcase the town's new rodeo arena, which had new bucking chutes installed this year, as well as several promising local bull riders
"We've got great bull riders in the Killdeer area," said Paulson, a former PBR finalist. "It's fun for the community to see first hand."
Along with the bull riding, there'll be a motocross team from Billings, Mont., performing stunts.
Still, Paulson said the main goal of the event is to show the PBR the city is capable of hosting a bull riding event. He added that the city would have to start with the PBR's Discovery Tour, the lowest tier of the four-tiered bull riding association.
"Eventually the goal is to make this a PBR," Paulson said. "We thought about doing it this year, but I thought we should kind of ease into."
Hayworth says future is bright for Kruse
Jake Hayworth didn't leave the Champions Ride saddle bronc match Sunday without giving a nod to his travelling partner.
Even after his short-round victory Sunday, Hayworth had to stop and give a nod to Kruse, the world standings leader with more than $101,000 earned this year, who was bucked from his bronc after being awarded a reride.
As Hayworth shook hands with event coordinators and took pictures, the 23-year-old Kruse was speaking with fans and giving autographs to children.
"Words can't tell you how proud and impressive Jesse Kruse is," Hayworth said. "That guy is going to change the sport for the better. He's already doing it. You look at how these people are flocking to him. The kid is charismatic and more importantly, he's a great man.
"... He's going to be phenomenal in the long run."
Monke is the Sports Editor of The Dickinson Press. His Rodeo Notebook appears Wednesday's during the summer months. Along with the above listed e-mail, he can be reached at 701-456-1213.