Rodeo takes two

Rodeo finals competitors are hoping it is second time lucky.
Rodeo finals competitors are hoping it is second time lucky.

RAIN is again troubling Australian Professional Rodeo Association finalists scheduled to ride at the Gold Coast next week.

Central Highlands representatives Kacey, Shane and Leanne Kenny and Dale and Leanne Caban are crossing their fingers the weather eases to allow a second crack at the national championships, after the earlier date was postponed due to severe flooding across Queensland.

“We ended up having to drive all the way out to Barcaldine and then down to get there,” Leanne Caban said. “Then we got caught on the highway by the floods heading north.”

Leanne said while it had been some time since her last run in the APRA finals, she was looking to make the most of her latest opportunity in both the barrel racing and breakaway roping titles.

“I think I’m past the nerves stage,” Leanne said. “It’s great to make it in both – there are only five girls competing in both so it gives me a good shot at the all-round cowgirl title as well.”

Husband Dale will saddle up for his finals berth in the team roping and breakaway roping and it’s so far, so good for the Caban duo.

“The rain is holding us up a little bit at the moment but we got some good practice in at Comet the other weekend,” she said.

“It’s great just to qualify (for the APRA finals), that has been our goal every year.”

Emerald’s Kacey Kenny has also qualified for next week’s team roping final and will able to draw on all his experience from a six-month stint on the American rodeo circuit.

He said it will be the “finer points” from his overseas tour which will serve him well at the Gold Coast.

“I was a bit taken aback, it’s a real eye-opener,” he said. “The level of competition definitely steps up, I learnt that much again on what I already knew.”

Shane and Leanne Kenny have also been busily readying arrangements ahead of the season’s championships. Leanne is confident her barrel racing horse Dice will shape up well for the finals after also falling victim to the inclement weather.

“He hasn’t had the best preparation... I couldn’t ride him for six to seven weeks because he contracted a foot infection from all the rain.”

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