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Proctor repeats as Xtreme Bulls champ

Shane Proctor remains seated and centered on his way to an 86.5-point ride in the finals and the 2012 Xtreme Bulls Cody-Yellowstone title. Proctor, a former NWC rodeo team member, won the event for the second straight year and pocketed nearly $10,300 for the win. Shane Proctor remains seated and centered on his way to an 86.5-point ride in the finals and the 2012 Xtreme Bulls Cody-Yellowstone title. Proctor, a former NWC rodeo team member, won the event for the second straight year and pocketed nearly $10,300 for the win. Tribune photo by Randal Horobik

Former NWC rider pockets more than $10,000

Former Northwest College rodeo team member and defending world bull riding champion Shane Proctor kicked off Cowboy Christmas in a big way on Saturday, winning the Cody-Yellowstone Xtreme Bulls tour stop. This marks back-to-back title years in Cody for Proctor.

Forty of the top bull riders in the world standings descended on Cody for Saturday’s showdown in the arena. Proctor was one of just two who could leave that night boasting that they had turned in a pair of scoring rides. As a result, Proctor pocketed approximately $10,300 in prize money, a figure that should vault him back up in the world standings.

Proctor had entered the night ranked just 32nd in this year’s standings, a considerable change from a year ago when his name was atop the ranking hierarchy for much of the year. Depending how the rest of a busy Fourth of July week pans out — 31 rodeos are offering an estimated $3.3 million total payout this week, including the Cody Stampede, which is part of the Wrangler Million Dollar Tour — Proctor’s Saturday performance may be enough to lift him back into the top 15.

That would be key as the top 15 money winners for the season advance to the National Finals Rodeo in December.

Proctor’s victory on Saturday was extremely workmanlike. His 85-point ride in the prelim round ranked him fourth among the eight riders who reached the eight-second buzzer. In the finals, Proctor’s 86.5-point ride was the lowest of the three scoring rides turned in.

Combined though, it was enough for a 15.5-point margin of victory for the Grand Coulee, Wash., native. It also produced a payday of $10,293.

Cody Samora, who entered Saturday as the No. 2 rider in the world standings this season, was the only other performer to post two qualified rides. Samora, who was among the final flight of bull riders in the long go, turned down the option for a re-ride and accepted a 65-point score to assure himself of a place in the finals.

Once there, he electrified the crowd by turning in the night’s highest-scoring ride of 91 points to vault up the standings.

Samora’s strategy paid off in the form of an $8,930 payday.

Trey Benton III, one of four randomly selected cowboys given a spot in the finals, salvaged a payday with an 87.5-point ride in the finals and a $2,350 check.

Cody Rostockyj, a Hillsboro, Texas, native and No. 18 in the world, carried the lead into the finals after turning in the high-point ride of the prelims with an 88-point ride. That placed him one point better than fellow Texan, Dalton Votaw, who was only added to the roster of riders after a late cancellation opened up a slot.

Votaw made the most of the opportunity, pocketing more than $7,000 for his effort.

For local hero Kanin Asay, who entered the night ranked No. 4 in the world, the night ended early. Asay was thrown well before the eight-second buzzer on his prelim ride and was not one of the four non-scoring riders drawn to the final round.

“We had our best turnout ever in terms of tickets sold,” Cody Stampede board president Marc Thompson said of this year’s event. This marked the sixth season the Xtreme Bulls Tour has made a stop in Cody. “It was exciting to see Shane Proctor win again. We still consider him a hometown hero and a local boy.”

Many of the Xtreme Bulls competitors will remain in Cody to take part in the Cody Stampede, which runs through July 4 and is part of the Wrangler Million Dollar Tour. Tonight’s (Tuesday’s) performance starts at 8 p.m. Wednesday’s performance begins earlier at 5 p.m.

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