P.A.’s Byrne leads Canada to victory

Tanner Byrne from team Canada on Fully Locked and Loaded at the PBR Global Cup Sydney Australia in Qudos Bank Arena. Photo courtesy Elise Derwin/PBR Australia

A couple of Saskatchewan boys helped Team Canada ride to a bronze medal at the inaugural Professional Bull Riders (PBR) Global Cup in Sydney, Australia over the weekend.

Over two days of competition, Canada posted 986.75 points. Over one-third of the national team’s points came from one rider — Prince Albert’s Tanner Byrne.

His strong performance on Sunday, the second day of the competition helped Canada fly past Team USA into a medal position. Overall, Canada finished behind event winner Team Brazil by 19.75 points, and second-place finisher Team Australia by 19 points, despite heading into Sunday 30 points behind Team USA in third and over 100 points behind both Australia and Brazil.

Byrne lasted the full eight seconds on each of his four rides, posting impressive scores of 82.5 and 86 on the second day of competition. His scores were good enough to post the second-best individual point total of the weekend.

The nation’s next-best performer is also Saskatchewan born. Jared Parsonage of Maple Creek went three for three over the course of the weekend, finishing with 231.25 points.

That included a score of 80.5 points Sunday.

Two other Saskatchewan-born riders posted scores above 80 points on the second day of competition. Dakota Buttar of Kindersley, the 13th ranked rider in the world, earned 83.5 points Sunday after falling off prior to the eight-second mark in both of his Saturday attempts.

Alternate Justin Lloyd of Tisdale also stepped up. He came in for injured Ponoka, Alta. Native Wacey Finkbeiner, scoring 81.25 points.

Canada also benefitted from the contribution of De Winton, Alta’s Brock Radford, who scored 166 points, including an 86-point outing Sunday.

Team Canada went home with a cheque for $65,000 for their collective efforts.

A full event replay will be aired on TSN 2 on Tuesday, July 3 at 7 p.m. Eastern, 5 p.m. local.