Labor Day weekend not only unofficially ends the summer, it also signals the end of another season of action along the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association's (PRCA) Xtreme Bulls Tour. So, while many people will be enjoying a day off relaxing and maybe enjoying a bar-b-que, the top 40 bull riders in the PRCA will be tackling some of the toughest bulls in professional rodeo for a share of the $75,000 added purse.
Kanin Asay is the defending champion and the only two-time winner in the ten-year history of the bull riding only tour. However, neither Asay nor Seth Glause, last year's Finale Champ, will be competing in Ellensburg this year due to injuries. Despite having hip surgery back in June, Asay is still the standings leader entering the Finale.
Asay's lead over second ranked Tyler Smith is just over $1,000, and only $5,500 better than third ranked Josh Koschel. In the event a rider sweeps the long round, short round and average during the Finale, that cowboy could win $21,500. Mathematically, that means any one of the top 10 ranked cowboys has a chance to claim the season title.
While all eyes will surely be focused on the chase for the Xbulls season title, and the effect money won in Ellensburg will have on the World title race, several cowboys enter the event on the opposite side of the standings. Nearly every cowboy from eighth ranked Elliot Jacoby to 18th ranked Scottie Knapp will be on hand in Ellensburg. With just one month left of pro rodeo's regular season, and only 15 positions available at the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo (WNFR) in December, those bubble cowboys have an opportunity to make their season with a big win at the Finale.
As in the past, fans who are unable to attend in person can catch all the action live via Internet radio on ProRodeoLive.com.