By Dennis Morgan
BULL-A-RAMA…An after-thought turned into a big payday for Bloomfield’s Dalton Cunningham.
On Friday night, competing in the seventh annual Bull-A-Rama, Cunningham was just one of four bull riders to stay on for eight seconds in the opening round. His score of 73 was the high score in that round. Then, in the short go-round, he topped that score with an 80 to easily win the event and a $1,000 purse.
Providing more explanation about Cunningham’s successful night was Judge Van Volk. Volk has judged bull riders for many years, and now is semi-retired, but likes to judge the Bull-A-Rama in Elgin.
“When that bull came out of the chute, the bull was buck’n real hard,” he said about the 80-point ride. The bull, he said, then turned into a spin, “then kinda lost his gather and didn’t continue, but he swapped ends and then he moved quite a bit.” Volk said Dalton never moved and did an excellent job.
Also glad he made the trip was his wife Shaunna Cunningham. From Ainsworth, she said every time he competes, she’s there to cheer him on.
“It’s nerve-wracking, very nerve-wracking,” she said about watching Dalton compete. “But, you get used to it after awhile.”
“It was a last-minute decision,” she said to come to Elgin to compete. “That’s the life of a bull rider.”
Mutton Bustin preceded the bullriding competition. Nearly 20 youngsters tried their hand at staying on sheep.