By Ann Bleiker
SALT LAKE CITY - History was made on Monday night, July 24, in Salt Lake City at the Days of '47 Arena. For the first time at a regular season PRCA/WPRA Rodeo gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded to the winners.
The two ladies that were the last to qualify for the $1 million rodeo went 1-2 on the final night. Recent Texas A&M University graduate Hailey Kinsel stopped the clock in 17.06 seconds to take the gold medal and $50,000, which will move her into the top 15 and a shot at her first Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
"This is a true blessing and I am sure I will find something to do with the $50,000," said Kinsel.
Photo by Greg Westfall
Kinsel of Cotulla, Texas, called upon her 5-year-old yellow mare DM Sissy Hayday, whom she calls “Sister”. Sister is by PC Frenchmans Hayday (or “Dinero”, the infamous 1995 Palomino Stallion from the Potter Ranch) and out of a Royal Shaken Em mare. The horse was purchased from a sale in her 2-year-old year. This is her first year competing at ProRodeos and is quickly showing the world, she can handle the pressure situations. Kinsel and Sister started the year winning the American and then followed that up in June with a College National Finals Rodeo title. She can now add gold medalist to her growing resume.
The Komatsu Equipment Days of ’47 Cowboy Games & Rodeo presented by Zions Bank, July 19-22 and 24, took at the all-new, $17.5 million, state-of-the-art Days of ’47 Arena at the Utah State Fair Park. The venue—an outdoor arena located in the heart of Salt Lake City—featured over 10,000 stadium-style seats. For the first time at a PRCA/WPRA regular season rodeo gold, silver and bronze medals were awarded to the champions. The only other time cowboys and cowgirls competed for such a prize was during the 1988 and 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Calgary, Alberta, and Salt Lake City, Utah, respectively.
Kinsel and Kelly Tovar of Rockdale, Texas, got into the $1 million rodeo event through the WPRA Qualifier just under a week ago on Tuesday, July 18. Tovar finished second with a 17.29 and Lisa Lockhart of Oelrichs, S.D., was third in 17.38 seconds. Lockhart added $12,000, which was much needed to get her into the top 15.
The Gold Medal Round will be televised on CBS Sports Network on July 30 at 8 p.m. ET.
Barrel Racing: 1. Hailey Kinsel, Cotulla, Texas, 17.06 seconds, $50,000; 2. Kelly Tovar, Rockdale, Texas, 17.29, $25,000; 3. Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, S.D., 17.38, $12,000; 4. Kellie Collier, Hereford, Texas, 17.39, $6,000.
Days of '47 Cowboy Games and Rodeo Medal Winners:
Gold: Hailey Kinsel, Cotulla, Texas
Silver: Kelly Tovar, Rockdale, Texas
Bronze: Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, S.D.