TACOMA, Wash. ― Every bull in the draw in the opening round here
is a native of the Northwest, the North or the West ― bulls we
don't see as often on the Built Ford Tough Series. This will be a
change of pace for the riders, as they don't know these bulls as
well. If anyone earns a re-ride in this round, the first three
bulls in the re-ride pen are Jeff Robinson's Panhandle Slim clones.
If a right-handed rider gets a re-ride option here there's a decent
chance he could end up your round winner.
Joao Ricardo Vieira on 642 Pimp Daddy:
Pimp Daddy has been ridden seven times in 14 career outs, and riders are 3-for-5 on him at the Built Ford Tough Series level. He's a good draw at any bull riding event, he can spin either way, but likes the left. He has good timing, and doesn't have much forward movement that would add difficulty. Vieira is 14-for-24 on the season at all levels, and a riding percentage of 58 percent is exceptionally good. He needs to improve at the BFTS level, and this is a good one to start on.
Mike Lee on U1 True Blood:
Among the top 5 riders in the standings right now, Lee has been by far the most effective against the highest-ranked bulls. He's 5-for-8 (62.5 percent) and none of the others have ridden better than 25 percent of the elite bulls. Lee's overall riding percentage at Built Ford Tough Series events is only 41 percent, and that is the number he needs to bring up. This bull has only been ridden once, but he is rideable, and is one of the better draws in this round. He's likely to go to the right here ― away from Lee's hand.
L.J. Jenkins on 71 Badger Milk:
We don't know much about this bull, except that he's been out three times, and has an average bull score of close to 44 points. That's the kind of bull score that produces round wins. Badger Milk has spent most of his career out of the limelight. He's been around since 2010, yet rarely surfaces to go to a PBR event.
Shane Proctor on K718 Get Smacked:
Proctor is back on his home turf, and this bull is also from Proctor's home turf. Steve Katich has been raising bucking bulls for a long time, and Proctor has likely been on his bulls quite a few times. Get Smacked is a half-brother to Smackdown, and he's been ridden a couple times in nine career outs. Their sire, a bull called El Smacko, was not an exceptional bucking bull, but as a sire, he's produced bulls that are solid and durable performers.
Ryan Dirteater on 803 Uncle Buck:
This is a Canadian bull who is making his Built Ford Tough Series debut here. He's been ridden twice in nine career outs. He should spin to the left right in the gate, and Dirteater, who is here as an alternate, should be able to handle him.
Agnaldo Cardozo on 701 Foul Play:
Foul Play is the highest rated bull in this round. He's also a Canadian bull, and is one of the best bulls in Canada right now. He's unridden in 22 career outs, and the reason is his bucking style. He has some forward movement, good speed and jumps high, but doesn't kick high. This makes him very good at throwing riders out the back when he goes into a spin. Cardozo will have his hands full here, but if he can become the first man to get a score on Foul Play, he will get a good one.
Troy Wilkinson on 426 Straight Jacket:
Here's a bull from Montana, and a rider from Australia, and it turns out they've met before ― in Texas two years ago. Wilkinson didn't make the whistle there, and Straight Jacket has been ridden just eight times in 35 career outs. He's also been fairly nomadic, having appeared in 16 different states from Connecticut to California.
J.B. Mauney on 087 Old Soul:
Mauney is destined to have this bull, apparently. Old Soul has only been to two events. Aaron Roy rode him in Sacramento, Calif., this year, and Mauney had him in Anaheim, Calif., but couldn't get on because of an injury there. Now he's matched up with Mauney again. Look for Mauney to get a score here.
Kody Lostroh on 749 Switchback:
Switchback only has five outs on record, and he was ridden by Stormy Wing in his only Built Ford Tough Series appearance back in 2011. Of the other four riders he's faced, none of them came down quick. They all rode him a fair distance. Lostroh will be the best rider he's gone against, and Lostroh probably gets a score here.
Zack Brown on 769 In The Club:
This is another Canadian bull. This one has been ridden just once in four attempts, but he's about to be ridden a second time by Brown tonight. Look for In The Club to turn back to the right, which will be away from Brown's hand, and look for Brown to ride him easily. This bull is a reasonably strong pattern spinner from what we've seen of him, but he has steady rhythm, and doesn't have any tricks. He's almost a litmus test type bull. Everyone competing at the Built Ford Tough Series should be able to handle a bull that jumps kicks and spins at average speed and power, and that's what we are looking at here.
MATCH - Austin Meier on 5 Chocolate Thunder:
This bull doesn't get around much, but when he does he turns heads. He was a short round bull at the World Finals in October. He's an exciting bull to watch, and may remind you of Scene of the Crash ― a famous PBR bull from the Justin McBride era. This is one of the more interesting match ride pairings we've seen this year. Meier is a good match for this bull, and we could see a big score here.
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