Tiffani Sonnier, of Boling, Texas, won the first semi-final round after stopping the clock at 17.80 seconds on Wednesday, July 20, while riding No More Mr Night Sky at the WCRA Utah Days of ’47 rodeo.
“It feels awesome just to know that I get to come back and try to build on my run and do a little bit better,” Sonnier said.
The second-to-last out in the set, Sonnier clocked the only time under 18 seconds, securing her spot to Monday’s Gold Medal Performance where she will get the chance to compete for $25,000.
“I was riding a younger horse that doesn’t have a lot of rodeo experience,” Sonnier said. “The ground was a little harder than what he was used to, so I just knew that I had to ride him a little bit smarter and back off where he could do his job. It was really loud and a big environment for him and I mean, he just did his job.”
Mo, registered No More Mr Night Sky, by Blazin Jetolena out of Featureacredpromise (Feature Mr Jess x Shawne Promise), is owned by Thomas and Zoe Braman of Isabella Quarter Horses out of Refugio, Texas. Sonnier started riding Mo eight months ago after selling her open mare, Sippin On Firewater, to 2020 National Finals Rodeo qualifier Jimmie Tew.
“He’s just very free running, very honest, does what you show him,” Sonnier said of the 6-year-old gelding. “He’s kind of like a kid in a candy store, every once in a while he lacks a little focus, but if you show him how to do something, he tries to figure out how to do it if you let him.”
It is not the first time Sonnier has won a WCRA event on Mo. She rode him at the Corpus Christi Qualifying Round and won the third round of the Corpus Christi Progressive Rounds.
“I actually qualified for this event because I did well at the Corpus event,” Sonnier said. “It’s been great because we can nominate some of the Open events. I tried to make sure that my husband and my son got qualified in the team roping so we could all do this together. So we look forward to it. It was really awesome because we all got to compete here tonight and only the WCRA does this. It’s only possible because of their events.”
Action at the WCRA Utah Day of ’47 Rodeo continues July 21 at 7:30 p.m. MT. Live streaming of the Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo is available on RidePass PlutoTV nightly at 7:30 p.m. MT. CBS will air the Gold Medal Round of the Utah Days of ’47 Rodeo on July 31 at 11 a.m. MT.
WCRA Days of ‘47 Semi-Final Round 1 Results:
1. Tiffani Sonnier, Boling, TX, 17.800 seconds, $1,600; 2. Kaitlin Schuck, Wickenburg, AZ, 18.076, $1,200; 3. Brittney Hipp, Tuttle, OK 18.279, $800; 4. Lorie Diodosio, Fowler, CO, 18.634, $400.
Gold Medal Round Current Qualifiers:
Tiffani Sonnier, Jana Guthrie