National Final Rodeo 2017

National Finals Rodeo – Watch 2017 Live Online, National Final Rodeo 2017

WATCH NFR 2017 LIVE

WATCH NFR 2017 LIVE

BILLINGS —National Final Rodeo 2017  There is more at stake than a world all-around title.This could be for family bragging rights.Trevor Brazile and Tuf Cooper are 1-2 in the PRCA world all-around standings entering the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas.

The goal, he said, has not changed. A world championship is within striking distance. Last year Bird finished sixth in the final world standings. He will be competing again with partner Russell Cardoza.

“We’re just as capable of having a good week as anybody and that’s what we’re hoping for,” Bird said.

He plans to start the National Final Rodeo 2017 NFR aboard his big grey horse “Yahtzee.” Bird’s other fine mount, “Dolly,” is also a possibility.

Bird said his experience at the big rodeo could well pay off, even if his priorities are just a bit different.

“Man, it’s always exciting to be here,” he said. “But taking care of this little guy is No. 1 and the NFR is No. 2. I’m not as nervous (as years past). I’m still excited and ready to go, but I’m not worried about it at all.”

There figures to be a sizeable Bird contingent in the Thomas and Mack once again this year. Bird said the support from back home is overwhelming. A year ago, an Allegiant flight from Great Falls was landing on Thursday night just as the eighth go-round was unfolding.

“When National Final Rodeo 2017 you put your faith in God you don’t have to worry about yourself too much,” Vezain said. “I’ve been staying focused and getting ready for is. Hopefully everything works out.”

Though Vezain’s father, Justin Jarrett of Great Falls, and his mother, Shilo, are not married, J.R. has maintained strong connections with his entire family.

“I’ve got a set a grandparents in Great Falls and a set of grandparents in Red Lodge and everybody’s good, man,” he said. “Shelby and I got our house fixed up and moved in a couple weeks ago. Everybody came up to Melstone and checked it out.”

Also competing in the NFR are steer wrestler Ty Erickson of Helena and team roper Clay Tryan of Helena. Barrel racer Lisa Lockhart, who grew up in Circle, provides yet another Treasure State tie to the rich rodeo.

The $10 million NFR features payoffs that include first-place checks of $26,231 per round and $67,269 per average. The event pays for the top six per round and top eight in the average.

“The whole plane was going crazy, I guess,” he said. “To have so many people come to Las Vegas to watch makes me feel very happy.”

Vezain, known among rodeo fans for his long red locks and fiery riding style, is a former prep wrestling champion in Wyoming. He and Shelby have now moved to Melstone and are living on the family ranch.

 “It’s the original ranch house that was on the place,” Vezain said. “We fixed it up. I think we’re the ninth or 10th ones (in the Newman family line) that have lived there.

He hopes to improve upon an eighth-place performance in the 2016 world standings.

“I’ve been super blessed this year,” Vezain said. “Drew really good and riding really good. My health is 100 percent and hopefully I can rock and roll and bring home some hardware.”

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