Steer Wrestling & Bull Riding Stock Awards

Steer Wrestling

Bull Riding

horse of the year

bull of the year

Dashin Haze (Tyson)

-201 Night Moves

Owned by Curtis Cassidy, Donalda, Alta

Owned by Calgary Stampede, Hanna, Atla.

Early in his career, Tyson was too strong for barrel racing, but the brown horse with the catapult takeoff was perfect for steer wrestling. Fortunately for the gelding, Curtis Cassidy, one of the foremost steer wrestling horse trainers, liked him and introduced him to the world of wide open flybys. “We spent the first winter getting him broke to the box and trained on cattle. He came around pretty fast. Then we just went to rodeoing on him. At Calgary in ’16 he was injured while he was getting warmed up, so I had to leave him off the rest of the year,” explains Cassidy. The gelding eventually bounced back from the serious injury, living up to his namesake, boxer Mike Tyson. “I didn’t bring him back til ’17, but he’s been doing better and better, ever since.” Cassidy rode the 15hh gelding at the winter rodeos and the spring rodeos in California, and then didn’t haul him south again until after the K-Days Rodeo in Edmonton. “He’s mostly been in Canada, and I also used him in the northwest rodeos this fall.” Together, the record-setting duo did a lot of winning this year (just to mention a few: Grande Prairie, Olds, Brooks and Puyallup, Wash., where he won $18,000), and Tyson is heading to his second CFR. Cassidy is also making the haul to Vegas where he is a contender. Cassidy is picky about who he shares his horses with — being a good rider is a must and so is not wasting a run. The paydays can add up pretty darn fast with the calibre of riders that will be swinging into the saddle on the brown horse, and we can safely assume many of the cheques will be written to Cassidy. After all, there is only one way to get a back number at the CFR, and that is to earn it — and Cassidy has earned so many he has rewritten the record book. — TM Night Moves is no run-of-the-mill bull. Granted, just being chosen Bull of the Year launches him into a whole new stratosphere and a place in the record books, but to garner the votes of some of the toughest bull riders in the world after only eight trips says a lot about the moves he makes. “We managed to get eight trips on him to qualify for the NFR, and three trips to qualify him for the Canadian Finals,” explains Keith Marrington, director of rodeo and chuckwagons for the Calgary Stampede. “All of his trips were in Canada, and he made every one of his trips count. He’s a pretty special bull.” Night Moves came out of Braithwaite Ranches’ breeding program, located near Bluffton, Alta. “We bought a package of bulls a couple of years ago from Todd [Braithwaite], and he was in it. We already knew he had lots of talent, and we’re grateful to Todd for letting us buy the bull.” Now tipping the scales at nearly a ton, the big black went to the WNFR last year, and now with this award and his increase in popularity, he’s almost a shoo-in for a third trip when the WNFR bull roster is announced. However, the horned bull is getting tougher to ride. Last year he was ridden four times. This year, he has been out eight times and was ridden twice; Jared Parsonage won a tough second on him and he was ridden at Ponoka by Joe Frost (who didn’t have the prettiest trip), but Night Moves himself was marked 44 out of 50. “I think the secret to a lot of our success is keeping our animals fresh; we don’t overuse them, and we’re picking our spots,” says Marrington. “Night Moves is maturing, and he’s also a lot better in the chutes, so that certainly helps the guys out,” he says. “But, yes, he’s been good,” says Marrington. “Every time they draw him they have an opportunity to get a cheque, and that’s what they want.” — TM

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