Who’s Whooping the Rest? 2023 Circuit Standings Update

As the WPRA divisional circuit season marches on, competitors such as Shelby Boisjoli and Taylor Munsell from circuits across the United States have risen above the rest.

Hanna Hundsdorfer Dominates Clovis Rodeo
Hanna Hundsdorfer made the most of a long score at the 2023 Clovis Rodeo, winning more than $6,800. Photo by S. Hagen.

The WPRA divisional breakaway circuit system is tough with titles often determined by a few hundred dollars, but breakaway ropers from the Montana, Prairie, Southeastern and California circuits have put distance between themselves and their peers in a quest to clinch the year-end championship.

Montana Circuit

No. 1: Shelby Boisjoli $10,225

Leading No. 2 by $3,992

Top circuit rodeo of 2023: Bigfork Summer ProRodeo, July 8, $2,462

At the start of the summer run, Boisjoli wasn’t even on the leaderboard for the Montana Circuit. Now, she’s climbed her way to the top, holding off No. 2 Sarah Verhelst of Pryor, Montana, by nearly $4,000.

At the end of the divisional circuit season in 2022, Elizabeth French was leading the Montana Circuit field with $9,993 (the year-end title ended up going to Joey Williams with $12,091 in earnings). Boisjoli has topped French’s number and has a chance to best Williams’ mark as she snatches up checks across the state on her way to an NFBR qualification.

Top 2023 circuit rodeo memory:

On the way to Browning, Montana, I missed a turn after we were already late. It added an hour to the trip. Thankfully, some way the slack took forever, and we made it.”

Advice to aspiring circuit rodeo competitor:

“The Circuit Finals are super important. It’s a great way to start the season with earnings.”

Prairie Circuit

No. 1: Taylor Munsell $16,750

Leading No. 2 by $3,002

Top circuit rodeo of 2023: Woodward Elks Rodeo, June 6, $5,433

Munsell claimed the 2022 Prairie Circuit year-end championship with $12,615 in earnings, and she has her eye on it again for 2023. With her Prairie Circuit victory, Munsell punched her ticket to the 2023 RAM NFR Open, where she finished No. 2 and earned a total of $16,398.

Top 2023 circuit rodeo memory:

“Winning my hometown rodeo in Woodward, Oklahoma, with all my family, friends and sponsors there. That was also the win that kicked off my summer run and helped set in motion me jumping from No. 30 to No. 4 in the world standings.”

Advice to aspiring circuit rodeo competitor:

“The Circuit Finals is one of my favorite rodeos of the year and pays good on top of that. It gives you a head start in the standings for the upcoming year, which can help you get into the limited-entry rodeos.

“Circuit rodeoing means you get to go and rodeo without the full-time commitment that us trying to make the NFBR have.”

Southeastern Circuit

No. 1: Laramie Johnson $11,449

Leading No. 2 by $2,626

Top circuit rodeo of 2023: Durant Pro Rodeo, June 3, $3,002

Johnson has been blocking out her competitors for months, holding steady at No. 1 as the Southeastern Circuit takes a pause for the hot, humid summer.

The Southeastern Circuit’s first finals was held in 2022, with Heather McLaughlin taking both the aggregate and year-end titles, finishing the year with $6,810 in winnings.

Johnson’s total of $11,449 with seven weeks till the end of the season marks explosive growth in the Southeastern Circuit.

Top 2023 circuit rodeo memory:

“One of my top memories was taking a two-week run to Florida and hitting more than eight rodeos. It was in the spring and Florida was 60, 70 degrees. Not only were the rodeos great, but I also had some down time to venture to the Florida beaches.”

Advice to aspiring circuit rodeo competitor:

“I would say, ‘Stay hooked and do your job.’ Don’t think of any certain rodeo differently than the next. They are all the same; you just want to try and win when you can and let the cards fall where they may.”

California Circuit

No. 1: Hanna Hundsdorfer $11,610

Leading No. 2 by $845

Top circuit rodeo of 2023: Clovis Rodeo, April 30, $6,805

Hundsdorfer may only be leading No. 2 Suzanne Williams by $845, but her consistency throughout the season—sometimes leading by more than $3,000—is worthy of recognition. She earned the 2022 California Circuit year-end championship with $9,244 in earnings, a mark she has already surpassed in 2023.

Top 2023 circuit rodeo memory:

 “My most memorable circuit rodeo would have to be Clovis Rodeo. I high school and college rodeoed in Clovis. It’s one of the biggest circuit rodeos and it’s in my backyard. Being able to rope four calves there was awesome, and, having my family there, I couldn’t have been more blessed.”

Advice to aspiring circuit rodeo competitor:

“Keep backing in the box and taking your shot. There is a lot of losing when it comes to rodeo. Rodeo finds a way to keep you humbled. A lot of people will bring you down and be negative—they want to see you fail. Ignore them.  Big things are coming in the breakaway roping thanks to Lari Dee, Jackie Crawford and Hope Thompson.”

With the divisional circuit rodeo season wrapping up Sept. 30, there are still opportunities for leaders to shift and underdogs to make their play. The Breakaway Roping Journal is the place for ProRodeo world standings coverage, riveting rookie stories, breakaway circuit updates and training material readers can’t find anywhere else.

Thanks to our friends at Equinety for their support of ProRodeo circuit coverage all year long.

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