Central Wyoming Rodeo brings the best to Casper

 Star-Tribune staff

Rodeo Tracker

WHAT: Central Wyoming PRCA Rodeo, Central Wyoming Fairgrounds.

WHEN: Tuesday-Saturday.

SCHEDULE: Slack, Tuesday-Friday, 1 p.m.; performance, Tuesday-Friday, 7:30 p.m.; championship, Saturday, 7:30 p.m.

2014 average champs

BAREBACK BRONC RIDING: Ty Breuer, 161 points.

SADDLE BRONC RIDING: Heith DeMoss, 168 points.

BULL RIDING: Sage Kimzey, 166 points.

STEER WRESTLING: Luke Branquinho, 12.1 seconds.

TIE-DOWN ROPING: Marshall Leonard, 26.6 seconds.

TEAM ROPING: Erich Rogers/Cory Petska, 18.7 seconds.

BARREL RACING: Kassidy Dennison, 34.44 seconds.

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Cowboy Christmas might be winding down, but there is still plenty of money to be won on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association circuit.

The Central Wyoming Rodeo, which begins Tuesday at the Central Wyoming Fairgrounds in Casper, is one of those venues that offers cowboys and cowgirls a chance to remain in the hunt for a world championship.

Last year's rodeo paid out more than $250,000, making it one of the most lucrative PRCA rodeos the week following the Fourth of July.

With all that money to be won, the Central Wyoming Rodeo naturally attracts some of the sport's top competitors.

Last year, bull rider Sage Kimzey and steer wrestler Luke Branquinho both won average titles at the Central Wyoming Rodeo on their way to winning world championships at the National Finals Rodeo in December.

The first-place finish was one of 18 on the season for Kimzey, who won four rounds at the NFR and ended the season with a rookie record total of $318,631.

Last year's world title was the fifth for Branquinho.

In addition, team ropers Erich Rogers and Cory Petska, barrel racer Kassidy Dennison and saddle bronc rider Heith DeMoss all won titles in Casper and went on to finish in the top 10 in the world standings.

Last year's Central Wyoming Rodeo competitors also included world champs Kaycee Feild (bareback), Spencer Wright (saddle bronc), Tuf Cooper (tie-down roping) and Trevor Brazile (all-around).

The rodeo has also been a place for cowboys with Wyoming ties to find success in recent years.

Last year, former Casper College standout Zachariah Phillips won the first round of bareback last year and finished second in the average behind 2010 College National Finals Rodeo champ Ty Breuer (Central Wyoming College). And Seth Glause, a four-time NFR qualifier who lives in Cheyenne, finished second to Kimzey in the bull riding.

The Central Wyoming Rodeo has nightly performances Tuesday-Friday, with the short go-round Saturday; all performances begin at 7:30 p.m. In addition, there are slack rounds Tuesday-Friday in all timed events beginning at 1 p.m.