Layton Green riding for saddle bronc world title
Meeting Creek’s Layton Green scores 86 points in the saddle bronc event at the 44th Canadian Finals Rodeo at Northlands Coliseum in Edmonton on Nov. 10. This week he is out to duplicate his Canadian title at the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas. File Photo/ Postmedia Network
Layton Green may be from a farm outside of Meeting Creek — population 39 — but over the course of the next week, he will be looking to conquer the rodeo world.
Green finished fifth in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association 2017 World Standings in the saddle bronc event, which punched his ticket to the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, from Dec. 7-16. The top 15 cowboys in the world in each event get the invite to the NFR and there’s no question what Green’s expectations are.
“I set the bar pretty high for myself, every time I get on, I expect to win,” said Green. “I hope to go down there and come back a world champ. That’s my goal and that’s what I’ve set out to do.”
The kicker is, the 23-year-old bronc rider is not out to lunch in his aspirations. He has dominated in his fourth year of professional rodeo, winning every circuit he competed on in Canada, including his first Canadian Finals Rodeo buckle. He also won the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association tour and the Columbia River Circuit finals.
It has been a year where everything has fallen right for the young cowboy as he has climbed the standings and gained experience. But it has not been by luck. He has worked to get to where he is with the help of his parents and others.
“It’s experience, but there’s a few things my dad and me worked on,” said Green. “We got an arena set up at the house and some bucking shoots. We’ve been raising some horses, and I got on broncs a couple of times a week all spring, just working on things I needed to work on, and I guess I just made the next step I needed to make.”
This season he has earned $110,619.61 and was one of seven bronc riders to break the six-digit barrier.
His work will be cut out for him when the NFR gets going as he has some stiff competition ahead of him, including Big Valley’s Zeke Thurston, who finished second in the world standings.
The biggest challenge will always be the stock. Just as the NFR brings the best cowboys in the world together, they also bring the best broncs, bulls and steers to Vegas. Green has, however, seen and rode most of what will be there.
“You’re getting on 10 of the rankest horses in the world,” said Green. “That’s the tough part … Getting on horses of that calibre for 10 days in a row is what really wears on you.”
The last rodeo he was at was the CFR, so he has practiced hard over the last month to stay sharp and ready for the torturous marathon coming his way.
“I’ve been getting on some practice horses and going to the gym, just trying to stay in shape,” he said.