The Wildest Sport: National Finals Rodeo Las Vegas Week

Man Riding Horse During National Finals Rodeo Las Vegas

The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo championship is back in town and is filled with the best of the best in the sport from bareback riding to barrel racing. From December 1-10, competitors come to show off their skills in a 10-day event that is one of the most exciting rodeo experiences in the world. Read on to learn more about the exciting rodeo in Las Vegas and what to expect in terms of the competitors, events, and more.


What is NFR Las Vegas?


The Wrangler National Finals Rodeo is the season-ending championship event for the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association. Known as the Super Bowl of Rodeo, the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas features an impressive list of competitors. Held annually since 1959, the Wrangler NFR is ProRodeo’s richest and most prestigious rodeo, and it showcases the very best cowboys, barrel racers, and livestock in the world. The contract signed with Las Vegas Events in 2015 keeps the Wrangler NFR in Las Vegas through 2024 and raises prize money. It is telecast to more than 55 million households on CBS Sports Network, making it a highly-watched rodeo event.


Who Competes in the National Finals Rodeo

From the last year, the top 15 contestants in the standard rodeo events – bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping (headers and heelers), saddle bronc riding, tie-down roping, WPRA barrel racing, and bull riding – qualify to compete at the National Finals Rodeo based on the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association World Standings for a share of the $9,700,098 prize and a chance to win the coveted Gold Buckle.

The National Finals Rodeo consists of 10 rounds. One round on each of the 10 consecutive days and each contestant competes once each day. You can find the full NFR schedule of performances here.


Competitor Riding Horse in the NFR Las Vegas


Selecting the National Finals Rodeo Winners

There are two champions in each event at the end of the NFR competitions, with four for team roping. The first champion is the average winner, and the second champion is the world champion who finished the year with the most money. The average winner and world champion may be different people or the same person. For the world champion, cowboys and barrel riders can gain more money by placing first through eighth in the average, which is the cumulative times of points earned during the 10 rounds.


Junior World Finals

On top of professional contestants, be sure to check out the junior rodeo athletes performing as they shoot for their dreams. The Junior World Finals presented by YETI will host more than 850 contestants within the Wrangler Rodeo Arena during the NFR schedule. You can watch the future of rodeo compete for the coveted Montana Silversmiths Championship Buckle and $1 million in combined cash and prize payout, taking place inside the Wrangler Rodeo Arena.


Country Music Performers at NFR Las Vegas


NFR Las Vegas Events


NFR Entertainment

NFR Las Vegas goes big, and it doesn’t stop at entertainment. If you’re a big fan of country music, you aren’t going to want to miss this star-studded lineup. With big country names like Luke Bryan, George Strait, Miranda Lambert, and so much more, the NFR is one of the best places to be for country fans. You can catch other acts from popular artists and entertainers such as Aerosmith and Jim Gaffigan as well.


NFR Buckaroo Ball at DLVEC

This year, you can really immerse yourself in the Las Vegas rodeo activities by attending Gary Leffew’s NFR Buckaroo Ball. From ​​December 1-10, free NFR Las Vegas viewing parties will be open to the public at the Downtown Las Vegas Events Center for a great time. Thursday, Friday, and Saturday nights will be filled with live music from top local artists, specialty food and drinks, and a wildly fun time while cheering on the Las Vegas rodeo events taking place.


Cowboy Christmas

Featuring more than 500,000 square feet of show floor and 350+ exhibitors from across the country, Cowboy Christmas during NFR Las Vegas is one of the largest and most exciting shopping experiences for cowboys and rodeo enthusiasts alike. These vendors will showcase their unique products which will include: jewelry, western wear, boots, furniture, handmade art, crafts, and pottery, as well as Official Wrangler NFR and PRCA merchandise.


If you’re a rodeo fan or new to the sport, NFR Las Vegas is the place to immerse yourself in the excitement and see some of the best talent in the field. Don’t miss out on the entertainment, shopping, and performances from top athletes. While you’re in town, be sure to stop by Circa Las Vegas. With the National Finals Rodeo, Circa Sports sportsbook, and Stadium Swim, you’ll be able to get your fill of sports – from rodeo to football!

Even more, the D and Golden Gate are each hosting a “Buck Wild Giveaway” for every day of the rodeo from December 1-10, 2022. The drawing will take place at 11 pm at the Club One desk where two winners will be chosen. Two prizes will be given out every night – an Official NFR Jacket or a pair of tickets to the following night’s rodeo! Club One members can also increase their chances by participating in different casino activities. Learn more about the giveaway here, and be sure to stop by the D or Golden Gate before 4 pm each day of the NFR to enter.