Raising the dust

Report and photos, Lara JensenCountryman

A 2500-strong crowd from all over WA descended on the Mullewa recreation grounds to witness the thrills and spills of the inaugural Mullewa Muster and Rodeo held on June 2.

An impressive line-up of bucking bulls and broncs awaited some of Australia's best riders, who travelled from as far as the Kimberley and eastern states for a slice of the action and a stake in more than $30,000 in prize money and buckles.

The weather was perfect and the official Australian Bushmen's Campdraft and Rodeo Association (ABCRA) full points rodeo program was packed with events from team roping and steer wrestling to barrel racing, rope and tie, saddle bronc and the highly-anticipated bull ride.

First place in the saddle bronc was Wade McCarthy with a score of 72 points, while Bronwyn Hill achieved the fastest time in the steer undecorating, grabbing the ribbon with lightning speed.

For the up and coming rodeo stars, the junior barrel race was a hit and gutsy competitor Ruby Hayes didn't let the crowd down when she crossed the finish line in a time of 18.35 seconds.

Hunta Gallagher also put in a superb effort in the junior barrels in a time of 17.73 seconds.

Sharron McCarthy gave a stellar performance in the ladies barrel race with her impressive first place win in a time of 16.13 seconds.

In the bareback, Cameron Day was best with 75 points, while Ashley Black scored first place with 70 points in the novice bulls and Carl Green won the open bull ride with an impressive score of 76 points.

When the last ride was over and the dust had settled, the crowd was spurred on into the night with music from country band McAlister Kemp, supported by Codee-Lee Down.

Mullewa Rodeo committee member Jane Parker said the feedback from the rodeo had been extraordinary and the committee looked set to do it all again in 2013.

"There were many comments from community members about the great day had by all and I would like to thank the sponsors, riders and all the people that made the event the great success it was," she said.

ABCRA WA zone director Chris Wyhoon took his hat off to the Mullewa committee and praised them for an outstanding event.

"For a first-time committee to run such a fluid, well-organised, entertaining show, along with providing outstanding support before and after the event, is testament to the dedication and passion that all associated with the event displayed," he said.

Seasoned competitor and ABCRA WA zone president Rhys Morrissey said the Mullewa rodeo was the best he had attended in 10 years.

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