Rough riders show Dowerin their best

Report and photos Bob GarnantCountryman

The recent Dowerin rodeo brought rough and tumble to the Wheatbelt as WA's best cowboys took on some of the toughest bucking stock this side of the country.

But Dowerin ain't no two horse town and the full rodeo also included the State's best ropers, steer wrestlers and barrel racers.

The National Rodeo Council's first Dowerin appearance brought 1300 fans to see all the action that comes with the sport.

NRC president Cody Lambert said fans enjoyed the event with heaps of return cheers as the action, at times, nearly spilled into the laps of those seated ring-side.

"We are keen to move rodeo around to the country towns because many rural people don't get to attend some of our regular venues," Mr Lambert said.

"Dowerin Events Management put together a great weekend of entertainment and we hope to bring it all back next year."

The Act Belong Commit Countryman Show 'N' Rodeo was a two-day event that also included sheep dog trials, a ute muster and lots of fun for the family.

The rodeo's success was largely due to some very close competition and the thrilling, but vey dangerous, open bull ride.

Cowboy Wade McCarthy and Jeremiah Day both put in sensational rides which earned them 71 points each to share the open bull ride win.

McCarthy hopes to continue his top form when he travels with several other WA competitors to Ipswich, Queensland, to take on the country's best at the NRC finals this weekend.

Day's brother, Cameron, will also compete at Ipswich after his win in the bare back at Dowerin.

Cameron, who scored 70 points on the bucking horse Happy 8, said he was looking forward to a big win at the nationals.

In the saddle bronc, Tyrell Smith was awarded the judges' top scores to take the win riding Whaler.

Keeping the sport in the family, Smith's younger brother, Clay, was best in the junior steer ride.

Also part of the rodeo family, young Ty Metcalf continued his consistent form in the poddy ride to take the event with a familiar winning grin.

In between all the bucking action, there was plenty of horsemanship and roping skills to keep the fans on the edge of their seats.

Team roping cowboys Mick Collins and Zac Kealy won the event that demonstrates how to safely catch a runaway steer in quick time.

Cowboy Phil Jeffrey came up with the brute strength required in the steer wrestling after stopping the clock at 10.47 seconds.

In the ladies breakaway, cowgirl Samantha Withers was able to throw a catching lasso with accuracy to rope in the win.

Hanging off her horse in the steer undecorating event, Tammy Kinney had the flag off the back of the steer and in her hands in no time for the win.

As the sun set in the west, the open ladies barrel race rolled into the arena, giving spectators the thrill of speed and agility from a big line-up of proven stayers.

Amber Bowtell and her horse, Bingo, rounded the barrels in the fastest time, leaving only a trail of dust, freezing the clock at 14.77 seconds.

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