Riding high in Houston with the Calgary Stampede

Canadian saddle bronc competitor Clay Elliott wasn’t too sure just how to react after his big Rodeo Houston win on one of the Calgary Stampede’s top horses.

“It hasn’t quite sunk in yet,” Elliott told local media. “I’m not quite sure what I’m going to do with $50,000.”

The Nanton, Alberta cowboy scored the huge paycheck by winning a ride-off in the finals on board Stampede Warrior. It was one of many notable performances by Calgary Stampede horses at the Livestock Show and Rodeo in Houston, Texas. In total, Stampede horses competed 84 times in front of 1.3 million attendees over the course of 21 performances. And they definitely caught the attention of the cowboys and the crowd, as they do year after year.

Stampede Warrior competing at Rodeo Houston in 2014

Stampede Warrior competing at Rodeo Houston in 2014

“They captured an incredible 14 go-round wins and more than $110,000 in prize money in Houston,” says Robert Wise, director of Western Events & Agriculture for the Calgary Stampede. The highest marked ride of the rodeo was given to Austin Foss, who scored 91 points on the Reserve World Champion, Calgary Stampede’s Special Delivery.

“We’re proud to have our equine athletes perform so well, especially in front of the great crowds in Houston,” says Wise. “They are an important rodeo partner for us, and it’s so great to see the success of our Born to Buck program in action in their arena.”

Team Calgary Stampede – Super Shootout Winners

Team Calgary Stampede – Super Shootout Winners

When the dust all settled on the final Sunday in Houston’s NRG Stadium, it wasn’t just the Stampede horses celebrating success. The Calgary Stampede itself claimed a special title in the Rodeo Houston Super Shootout.

Champion athletes from eight prestigious rodeos in the U.S. and the Calgary Stampede competed in the Shootout Sunday, March 20. One of the richest one-day rodeo events, with a $250,000 purse, it showcases the best of the best. Each rodeo athlete competes as an individual, as well as with a team. Each champion receives a $25,000 payout, with the winning team also receiving $12,500 and championship trophies.

Justin Denis and Rob Grundy of the Calgary Stampede Rodeo committee

Justin Denis and Rob Grundy of the Calgary Stampede Rodeo committee

The teams consisted of the champion athletes from the following eight qualifying rodeos: Calgary Stampede, Cheyenne Frontier Days, Fort Worth Stock Show & Rodeo, National Western Stock Show, Reno Rodeo, Rodeo Austin, Rodeo Houston, and the San Angelo Stock Show and Rodeo. We’re excited to say the high point team was ours – team Calgary Stampede!

Team members are competitors Stampede fans will be very familiar with. Luke Creasy (2015 Stampede Showdown Competitor), Trevor Knowles (three-time Stampede Champion), Cort Scheer (2013 Stampede Champion), Lisa Lockhart (2015 Calgary Stampede Champion) and Cody Teel (2012 PRCA Champion Bull Rider).

The Shootout was an awesome performance of rodeo, and from our perspective it couldn’t have ended any better. Congrats to team Calgary Stampede and all of the Rodeo Houston champions!

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