SACRAMENTO, Calif. – In Round 1, there didn’t look to be very many rider-friendly matchups, but the guys got 16 bulls ridden. Tonight, there are too many good matchups to list them all. It’s the most promising round we’ve seen in a while for riders. A number of guys drew bulls they should get along with, and we should see a lot of scores again in this round.
When there are a lot of qualified rides, it’s important to have a really good bull in order to stand out, and a few guys have an edge there. These are the high risk, high reward matchups in Round 2, but it’s going to take a really good bull to win the round on a night when we could easily see more than a dozen mid-80’s scores.
Dakota Buttar on Z7 Sketchy Bob:
This bull is really better for right-handed riders, but he’s been one of the more rideable bulls at the Built Ford Tough Series level throughout his career. That said, he’s been outstanding in his last four outs, and he’s the kind of bull Buttar could be 90 points on if he can hang on.
Kaique Pacheco on 95X DaNutso:
This is not an easy bull to ride. He’s wild and unpredictable, but with that comes the potential for a big score. Derek Kolbaba won the Anaheim, California, 15/15 Bucking Battle on DaNutso about a year ago.
Luis Blanco on 255 Organized Crime:
This is a young bull who was an ABBI Classic finalist last year. He doesn’t always have it together, but when he is feeling his oats he can be far better than any bull in this round. He was the high marked bull at Thackerville, Oklahoma, last year, and there’s a lot of bull talent in Thackerville.
Luciano de Castro on 93Z Bandy’s Bad Boy:
This bull is 7-0 against left-handed riders, and he’s a young bull with the inconsistency that comes with that, but he’s been really outstanding at times. He was one of the best bulls in Anaheim a year ago.
15/15 Bucking Battle
Derek Kolbaba on 44W Stone Sober:
Kolbaba has his work cut out for him here. At the end of last season we saw Stone Sober ridden twice for big scores, but you have to remember that is 50 percent of the total rides that have ever been made on him. He’s been ridden just four times in 82 career outs. And, one of those four was a trip where he just ran off and didn’t buck. Left-handed riders stand a better chance against him and Kolbaba is left-handed, but there again he’s effectively 33-2 against lefties. J.B. Mauney and Dener Barbosa were the two.
Gage Gay on 631 Jo Blow:
This is certainly the least known and least proven bull in this round, and that makes him a wild card. He’s unridden in eight outs, and he threw off Cody Heffernan in Chicago a couple of weeks ago. He has buckoffs against Eduardo Aparecido, Cody Nance and Robson Palermo as well.
Chase Outlaw on E5 Big Cat:
Big Cat is the closest thing to a ringer you will find in this round. He’s the most rider-friendly bull out in the 15/15 Bucking Battle, and he’s especially good for left-handed riders. Outlaw hasn’t done well so far this season, but drawing a bull like this in a spot like this can make everything better.
Paulo Lima on 32Y SweetPro’s Bruiser:
There is always the potential for a big ride on Bruiser, but the rider has to do everything right. Just about every rider here is capable of doing it, but few actually do. Derek Kolbaba did it last week for 92 points and an event win. Lima could repeat that, but he’s not allowed to make even a small mistake.
Shane Proctor on 12 Crossfire:
Proctor has a slight advantage on this bull in that he’s right-handed and the bull goes to the right. Statistically Crossfire is one of the most difficult bulls in the sport. However, like Stone Sober, he’s given up just four rides in his career, and half of them have come in recent months. He’s a year younger than Stone Sober, and while the two are more or less equal in difficulty, they have different bucking styles. Stone Sober is the flashier of the two, while Crossfire is steady and powerful.
Mike Lee on 81X American Hustle:
These two met in Springfield, Missouri, during the 2015 season and Lee came down early. Most guys come down early on this bull. He’s been ridden just three times in 51 career outs, and never by a left-handed rider. American Hustle has been around as long as Crossfire, but he’s not quite a world champion bull contender. His numbers put him in with bulls that are not flashy but are extremely difficult to ride.
Stetson Lawrence on Z32 Cracker Breaker:
Lawrence is in this round because Fabiano Vieira is out this week. He lucked into a great situation here too, because this is one of the better draws in Sacramento regardless of what round he’s in. Juliano de Silva won a round on him at the Velocity Tour Finals in Las Vegas in the fall, and Cody Nance was four one-hundredths of a second away from a big score on him last week in Oklahoma City.
Jess Lockwood on 35 Spotted Demon:
This will be a real test for Lockwood, and it’s a test he already failed once in San Jose, California, back in October. Spotted Demon was last ridden in January of 2014, and since then he’s put down 22 straight riders at BFTS events, and he’s 39-0 considering everywhere he’s been. For a bull no one seems to ride, he’s awfully predictable. He tends to go to the right, and the further into the ride Lockwood goes, the more this bull is going to want to tip him forward and buck him off over the front end. It’s odd for a bull to have more drop at the end of a ride than at the beginning, but this one keeps working until he gets every rider to bounce off his head.
Eduardo Aparecido on 57Z Jack Shot:
Jack Shot is just five years old this year, and he’s starting to make a place for himself among the better bulls. He goes to the right, and he carried Kaique Pacheco to a 91-point score, a short round win and an event win in Denver just weeks ago. He likes the right, and he can be an honest, high performing bull like Bruiser. This makes him a potential good fit for Aparecido.
Guilherme Marchi on 001 Smooth Operator:
Marchi is 2-for-3 on Smooth Operator, and everyone else is 0-for-48 on him. The key factor with this bull is how he starts out. He has a big move where he fakes to the left and comes back to the right in about three jumps, covering 20 feet per jump. He didn’t pull this on Marchi either time he rode him, and this match basically boils down to whether Smooth Operator does it this time. He’s almost unrideable when he does, but if he just goes to the right straightaway, Marchi has proven he can handle that.
Joao Ricardo Vieira on 1149 Pearl Harbor:
Vieira has tried Pearl Harbor twice before, and didn’t get very far. On top of that, Pearl Harbor is a ranker bull now than when they first met. He was in peak form last week in Oklahoma City. Vieira is one of the best riders in the PBR, but he hasn’t exactly been a dragon slayer in his career, and this is a legitimate dragon.
Ryan Dirteater on -904 Fire & Smoke:
If you watch this bull for a while you might assume he’s a good draw for left handed riders. He’s very fast, has pretty good timing, and he isn’t that scary. However, he isn’t picked very high in draft rounds and there’s something riders don’t like about him. He does cover a lot of ground while he’s spinning. Dirteater has been on him three times with no success, but he’s gone past the seven second mark on him once.
J.B. Mauney on 781 Asteroid:
Mauney famously rode Asteroid back in 2012 for 93.5 points, but the rest of the story is that he’s also bucked off of him three times since then and four times in total. Asteroid is not as explosive as he was in 2012, but while he’s lost some flash he hasn’t lost much difficulty. He’s still very hard to stay on. In his prime his propensity for jumping six feet in the air and diving straight down was just icing on the cake. He was hard enough to ride without that.
Kaique Pacheco on 40Y Chocolate Shake:
Chocolate Shake has been ridden just three times in 28 career outs. He’s one of the lesser known bulls in this round because this is only his sixth BFTS level appearance. Pacheco rode him 7.6 seconds at the 2015 World Finals.
Cooper Davis on 87A Wonder Flyer:
This is just a four year old bull, so he doesn’t have as much experience as most of the bulls in this round. He has just four outs on record, but in his four outs he has decisive buckoffs against Guilherme Marchi, Kaique Pacheco and Jorge Valdiviezo.
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