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CELEBRATING 60 YEARS

Mount Isa Mine Rodeo Goes Virtual

MI920414-Rhett Fitzpatrick scores 82pts to win the Saddle Bronc contest for the North American Team

The Mount Isa Mines Rodeo moved into the virtual space to broadcast Australia’s first VIRTUAL Rodeo last night (August 8).

Mount Isa Mines Rodeo Chief Executive Officer Ms Natalie Flecker said the 2020 Mount Isa Mines Rodeo livestreamed via the www.isarodeo.com.au for three hours from 6pm.

 “We may not have the roar of the crowd this year but we’re keeping it alive for the competitors, the fans, our sponsors and partners and all the volunteers and people behind the scenes,” she said.

The Open Bull Ride was arguably the stand out event, attracting an incredible field with 2015 Australian Bull Riding Champion and PBR Finals qualifier Troy Wilkinson placing 1st with an 88 point ride, narrowly defeating Aaron Kleier, the 2019 PBR Bull Riding Champion on 87 points, with Lachlan Richardson, a former PBR World Bull Riding qualifier in the United States on 85.5 points.

Open Bareback Champion is Dave Worsfold (4-time Australian Bareback Champion and 4-time Mount Isa Mines Rodeo Bareback Champion); Open Saddlebronc Champion is Lachlan Miller.

Maddix Lovett took out two buckles, winning the Rope & Tie and Team Roping with Shane Iker, a multi Australian Champion in timed events. The Steer Wrestling Champion is Darcy Kersh.

The Barrel Race was won by Texas-based Shea Fisher-Durfey, who entered her ride recorded in the States. Breakaway Roping Champion is Ariana Varischetti. Cloncurry cowboy Cade Ferguson took out three events – Junior Barrel Race, Junior Breakaway and Poddy Calf Ride. 2nd  Div Champions are Cody Gibbons (2nd Divi Bull Ride); Zac Mansfield (2nd Div Bareback) and William Reynolds (2nd Div Saddle Bronc). The Over 40s Bull Ride Champion is David Leake and Junior Bull Ride Champion is Lleyton Brown.

Ms Flecker said the rodeo attracted just under 100 nominations in all 16 events, including Open, 2nd Division and Junior from Australia’s top rodeo athletes plus some international rides, including Jamie Howlett, currently ranked #3 in the world in bareback riding who sent in a ride recorded at the Fort Worth Stock Show in Texas.

“A massive thank you to the competitors who sent in their videos and competed to win the cash and a very real buckle,” said Ms Flecker. “The reality is there won’t be the roar of the crowd or a victory lap in the arena but you will be part of Isa Rodeo history and our Champions for 2020.”

Ms Flecker said the Mount Isa Mines Rodeo was one of the few events that had been able to deliver in the online space.

“I want to pay tribute to our valued sponsors, including our Naming Rights and Foundation Partner, Mount Isa Mines,” she said. “Without their support, we would not have been able to make this concept a reality. We are very clear about our purpose – to stay connected to our rodeo competitors, our rodeo fans and supporters and to make sure travelling to the 2021 Mount Isa Mines Rodeo is part of everyone’s travel priorities next year.”

The Virtual Rodeo featured a mix of rodeo action (from videos sent in by competitors from around Australia and overseas), interviews with rodeo champions, stunning Outback Queensland scenery and live performances by three favourite live acts, Lee Kernaghan, Nashville-based O’SHEA and Casey Barnes who performed live as part of the show.

Ms Flecker acknowledged the valued support of Naming Rights and Foundation Partner Mount Isa Mines; Strategic Partners Tourism and Events Queensland and Outback Queensland Tourism Association; Gold Sponsors Bell and Moir Toyota and The Murrieson Group; Silver Sponsors Ariat and Bronze Sponsors Fast Scaff, Trekk Advisory (Wardles), McDonalds, Straitline Drilling, Blackwoods, Aggreko, Pirtek and the Isa Hotel; plus additional Silver Sponsors and Supporters.

The Mount Isa Mines Virtual Rodeo is supported by the Queensland Government, through Tourism and Events Queensland, and features on the It’s Live! In Queensland events calendar.

Visit www.isarodeo.com.au.  www.facebook.com/isarodeo;  www.instagram.com/isarodeowww.twitter.com/isarodeo and www.youtube.com/isarodeo.

For media assistance, please contact:

Susan Fuller, Synergy PR (Isa Rodeo Media)

M: 0411 463 693  E: susan.fuller@synergypr.net.au