Hali Williams Stops the Clock in 2.33 to Secure Spot in WCRA Days of ‘47 Gold Medal Round

Hali Williams, 18, of Comanche, Texas, won the second semi-final round at the WCRA Days of '47 Rodeo in 2.33 seconds, earning $1,600 plus a spot in the Gold Medal Round.

Hali Williams Days of '47
Photo by Ric Andersen/C Bar C Photography

At the WCRA Days of ’47 Rodeo, Hali Williams, 18, of Comanche, Texas, won the second performance of the semi-final rounds in 2.33 seconds and received $1,600 in addition to securing a spot in the Gold Medal Round where she will have a chance to rope for $25,000.

“I watched it last year from home on the couch, and I had hopes for me and this horse to be here,” Williams said.

Williams rode Red Light (Stylish Red Light), a 6-year-old sorrel gelding she purchased from Nick Travaglia that was trained by Jim Bob Fritz. Williams bought Red Light with a bone chip in his knee, going against what her dad, Speed Williams, had told her about buying a horse that could not pass a vet check, but when Dr. Charlie Buchanan of Signature Equine Hospital told them he had a 98% chance of a successful surgery, they took a gamble.

“We had the surgery and we had to give him two months off and then rehab for a month. So he kind of had a late start to his five-year-old year. I got to rope on him for maybe two weeks and he started kind of getting a little bit antsy and everything with me. So I’m like, ‘Okay, Dad, you take him for a little bit, get him tired.’ So Red Light was on the torture train for about six months every day, all day. I guess really our first breakthrough with him was when we took him to his first jackpot in December and I hadn’t roped a calf on him. Dad’s like, ‘Just go enter him, just see where he is at.’ First jackpot and I was one out of placing. And so that was a big, like, ‘Okay. I think he’s ready.’ So it’s just kind of been a whirlwind. December was our first rodeo. I had a good mare I was rodeoing on for a while and she was great, but she kind of got a little sore for a little bit. So I just had to put a little bit of pressure on Red Light at a couple of the rodeos and he just excelled way beyond our wildest dreams for the first year. And that’s kind of been the story so far in every situation I put him in. He just continues to impress us.”

Williams will rope in Spanish Fork on Friday and wait to see if she made it back to the short-round in Nampa on Saturday before returning to the Days of ’47 where she will rope another one for the championship title, $25,000, and the gold medal.

“I’m gonna try to go make the best run I can on what I draw and where I’m sitting,” Williams said. “Hopefully when I walk out of the arena, I’m winning it, and then let the girls beat me from then on, because I can only do so much with where I draw, what the calves are gonna be. There are too many scenarios to say I’m gonna try to keep you the same. I’d like to be a little more aggressive.”

Action at the Utah Day of ’47 Rodeo continues July 22 at 7:30 p.m. MT. Livestreaming on RidePass PlutoTV-Channel 720 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-Finals Round 2 Results:

1. Hali Williams, Comanche, TX, 2.33 seconds, $1,600; 2 Taylor Engesser, Spearfish, SD, 2.51, $1,200; 3. Ashlee Carley, Seguin, TX, 6.04, $800; 4. Josey Murphy, Keachi, LA, 7.44, $400

Gold Medal Round Current Qualifiers:

Jackie Crawford, Hali Williams, Josie Conner

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