Keith Wood is still the man.
The defending and eight-time champion from Saddle Lake assumed the early lead in the 2014 North American Pony Chuckwagon Championships Wednesday at the Westerner track, posting a time of 1:19.90 aboard the Westock Frame and Wheel Alignment wagon out of Red Deer.
Wood’s time was just slightly better than the clocking turned in by Lee Adamson of Camrose, who crossed the finish line aboard the A-1 Rentals wagon out of Camrose in 1:19.98.
Neil Salmond of Niton Junction turned in the third-best time of 1:20.22 while operating the Uncle Ben’s RV rig from Red Deer, and Brian Miller of Drumheller — on the Red Deer Westerner Board of Directors rig — crossed the line in 1:20.35, good for fourth place.
Rounding out the top 10 were Curtis Hogg of Sedgewick on the Kellough Enterprises Inc. outfit from Red Deer (1:20.43); Brent Lang of Killam on the Unique Industrial Paint and Glass wagon from Lacombe (1:21.18); Marvin Hubl of Eckville on the Eldorado Pressure Services rig from Rocky Mountain House (1:21.21); Dale Young of Olds on the Calgary Flames Ambassadors (1:21.32) wagon; Wade Salmond of Weekes, Sask., on the Nossack Fine Meats rig of Red Deer (1:21.47); and Carmen Currah of Stettler on the Red Deer Bettenson’s Sand and Gravel rig (1:21.92).
The North American Pony Chuckwagon Championships continue today at 6 p.m., with the wagons heading out at the same time Friday and Saturday and the finals set for 2:30 p.m, Sunday.