MORE than 1000 spectators crammed into the Great Western Hotel's rodeo arena for the last full rodeo of the year on Saturday night.

And they weren't disappointed. They were treated to some spectacular bull riding and in the open bull it came down to just one point separating first from second.

Local cowboy Brett Cross made good on his promise to best the bull El Toro Loco after just failing to ride him on New Year's. He held on for the eight seconds for a score of 85 points.

But just like last time, El Toro Loco let him know all about it once he had him off his back.

"It was a great ride by Brett," GWH rodeo manager Brian Duggan said.

"But the bull gave him quite a good rubbing into the ground and walked all over him at the end."

But, even after all of that, it wasn't enough to win. Sonny Schafferius rode Might Man for eight for a score of 86, just squeezing out Cross.

Despite his disappointment at being pipped at the post, Cross walked away uninjured with more than $2000 prize money for his open bull second place as well as winning the open bareback.

The rodeo was the last chance to accumulate points for the season before the finals of the Top Guns, on Saturday, November 21.

"We now have the top eight riders in the eight events competing in the finals later this month," Duggan said.

The top eight riders in the open bull, the open saddle bronc, bare back, barrel race, rookie bull, junior bull, steer ride and poddy ride will each get two rides in the finals.

"We have some great riders in the finals and the fans will get to see them ride twice on the night," Duggan said.

"It is a really tough competition. This is the select best and it is going to be a big finals. If you can win here you can match it with anyone."



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