Local cowboys Ryan Gray and Tyson Durfey pocketed some nice expense money during the weekend in final preparations for the Nationals Finals Rodeo.
Both made the semifinals of the PRCA Justin Boots Championships in Omaha, Neb. Gray earned $9,240 in bareback riding and Durfey $3,784 in tie-down roping.
That marked the end of the rodeo season with the top 15 in each event qualifying for the NFR in Las Vegas in December. Gray, a Cheney native, is going for the sixth straight year, this time as the leader with $159,024, although Omaha champion Steve Dent sliced Gray’s lead to less than $23,000.
Durfey is making his fourth straight trip. With earnings of $89,175, he sits in seventh place.
Ellensburg team ropers Riley and Brady Minor were knocked out of the top 15 on the last weekend.