BOWIE, Texas - There's no doubt Asteroid is the
No. 1 active bull in the world.
But ranking and assembling the rest of the Top 15 current bulls was quite a task for PBR Livestock Director Cody Lambert.
In fact, the pen being used for the first PBR 15/15 Bucking Battle wasn't finalized until after the Built Ford Tough Championship Round last weekend in Portland, Ore.
The Battle takes place Saturday night in Sacramento, Calif., and can be seen Sunday afternoon on NBC.
Lambert shuffled the order, cut a bull from the lineup and added a new one to best represent the 15 best bulls in the world as of today.
After finalizing his list, Lambert provided PBR.COM with an extensive scouting report on all 15 bulls, including examples of past rides that best illustrate their respective strengths.
SHEPHERD HILLS SODBUSTER: "He should spin to the right right out the chute, and he's not as flashy as some of the bulls in this deal, but he hasn't been ridden since 2010 when he was a 3-year-old. He was only ridden one time (that year) on an off-day."
Why he's here: "Because he's tough to make the whistle on. He bucks off left-handers and right-handers - good ones, like J.B. Mauney, L.J. Jenkins, and Douglas Duncan, just to name a few."
Past outs to watch: "Look at him bucking off L.J. Jenkins this past weekend at Portland (Ore.). Paulo Lima in Kansas City would be a good one too, from last year."
Shepherd Hills Sodbuster got the better of L.J. Jenkins on Sunday in Portland, Ore.
LINCOLN ELECTRIC'S BRING IT: "He has lots of
speed and is probably a very good draw in this event. He was ridden
twice last year with an average score being 90.75 points, and he
wasn't ridden in 2010 and only once in 2009, but Jordan
Hupp just rode him this past weekend. This bull has had a
3-and-a-half year career, and he's been ridden four times, and two
of those times are by Jordan Hupp."
Why he's here: "His record of bucking guys off or being lots of points. On a side note, Jordan was only 86.25 points on him last week, but the bull scored higher than Jordan did and that was the first time he's been bucked since the PBR Finals, so he was probably a little soft, and he'll be loosened up and a little more ready this week."
Past outs to watch: "I would look at Guilherme Marchi riding him last year at Pueblo (Colo.) in May, and I would look at him bucking off Jordan Hupp in September in Wichita, Kan., and Jordan riding him last week. Any of those three, or Jordan riding him in New York last year would be a good one too."
SPECKLED IVORY: "Really high jumps, fun to watch, looks like he'd be fun to ride, but he's had more drop here lately and looks a little tougher to ride than he has in the past. He averages 90.5 points when they ride him. He's been ridden seven times in his career and the lowest score anyone's ever had was 88 points."
'If they can ride him, they're going to
score high, and they're going to have to score high to win anything
in this round.'
Why he's here: "Because if they can ride him, they're going to score high, and they're going to have to score high to win anything in this round."
Past outs to watch: "Look at him bucking off Sean Willingham this past weekend and Valdiron (de Oliveira) riding him in Billings (Mont.) last year."
MELLOW YELLOW JACKET: "He's coming off an injury, and Portland was his first event since Billings last August. He gets so nervous in the chutes that he kicks the back of it, and his back legs were sore and he was stiff, so Chad Berger decided to just give him five months off to totally heal up. He's back. He bucked J.B. Mauney off in 3.2 seconds. Ty Pozzobon is pretty tough, and this bull is predictable. He does the same thing every time, which is one jump and spins to the right with lots of kick and lots of speed. He has a chance to ride him."
Why he's here: "Because he's a bull that's good enough to be in the championship round at the World Finals."
Past outs: "I'd look at J.B. this past weekend on him, and then at the 2010 Finals - this was one of the top bulls. He was in the championship round."
JACK DANIEL'S AFTER PARTY: "Cody Nance is left-handed and likes them to go to the right, and this bull does that. He's been ridden more than probably any other bull in this round, but they're 90 points on him every time they ride him."
Why he's here: "He's bucked off Silvano (Alves) twice and Douglas Duncan. We have to have 15 bulls and this is one of them that will deliver that kind of score if they're able to ride him. He's consistent. He's never the best bull in the PBR, but he's consistently great."
Past outs: "I'd look at when he bucked Elliott Jacoby off at Tulsa (Okla.) last year, and I'd sure look at Cody Nance at Springfield (Mo.) last year. He bucked him off."
Cowboy Casanova impressed Cody Lambert last week in Portland, Ore., tossing Paulo Lima in short order.
COWBOY CASANOVA: "This bull is going to spin to
the right as soon as they open the gate."
Why he's here: "He bucked off Paulo Lima in Portland and J.B. Mauney in Denver, and that's what got him here."
Past outs: "The Paulo Lima buckoff last weekend would be the one to look at."
BLACK ATTACK: "This is a bull that H.D. Page talked to me about last year, but he never brought him around until Columbus (Ohio), and I thought he was a good bull, but I was very skeptical about a bull that they chose to rodeo with rather than bring him to the Built Ford Tough Series. They brought him to Springfield and Columbus and I didn't take him to the World Finals, because they had chosen to rodeo rather than take him against the best bull riders in the world, and so he turned out to be a better bull than I thought. He bucked off Shane Proctor in the last round of the National Finals - that's the bull that broke his arm - and so far this year, he's bucked twice at Denver and once in Portland and he's bucked off Jared Farley, Chase Outlaw and Rubens Barbosa."
Why he's here: "Because he bucked off Shane Proctor. (laughs) No. Because of the way he bucked off a young kid named Chase Outlaw in the short-go at Denver."
Past outs: "The only video we have of him is bucking off Austin Meier at Springfield last year, or bucking off Rubens Barbosa last week. Either one of them is good."
SOUTHERN WINE: "This is a bull that I wouldn't have dreamed of putting in this round until Anaheim (Calif.). He's always been a good one, but Renato (Nunes) rode him at the World Finals last year, and that was the only time he was ridden last year. He only scored 86.75 points on him, but then Renato got on him at Anaheim the other day and he would have been 92 of 93 if had ridden him, and he bucked off Douglas Ferreira in Portland. Look for lots of kick and strong jumps, and before he even goes into his spin, he should have the rider shaken loose."
'Look for lots of kick and strong jumps, and
before he even goes into his spin, he should have the rider shaken
Why he's here: "He's extremely strong and has lots of kick. It'll be obvious."
Past outs: " Renato in Anaheim."
HIGHWAY 12: "He's a big, strong bull and he usually like to spin to the left out of a right-hand delivery, so his first turn out of the chute is going to be to the right, then he's going to go a jump or two and spin to the left with lots of speed. He's only been ridden three times in his career in three years, and the average score is 91 points. Something else that's important here is the only guys who have ever ridden him are Valdiron, J.B. Mauney and Paulo Lima."
Why he's here: "He's been in the championship round at the World Finals, and in short gos and championship rounds everywhere he goes."
Past outs: "The video I would want to see of him would be Ned Cross at Nashville (Tenn.) in 2010, or Paulo Lima riding him last year at Milwaukee, or him bucking off Ty Pozzobon at Anaheim the other day."
Highway 12 dropped Ned Cross in 4.1 seconds in Nashville, Tenn., in 2010, earning 45.5 bull points for the effort.
JACK DANIEL'S TENNESSEE HONEY: "Lots of kick
and whip to the outside of the spin, which is going to be to the
Why he's here: "He's been ridden two times in 3-and-a-half years, and the average score is 90.75 points. Austin Meier and Robson Palermo are the only ones that have ridden him."
Past outs: "I'd look at Robson Palermo riding him at Duluth, Ga., last year, (under the name Immigrant) and I'd watch him bucking off Silvano at Charlotte (N.C.)."
LARRY THE CABLE GUY'S GIT-R-DONE: "He just got moved into this fifth position because - and this is why he's here - Yellow Jacket Jr. had an off-day at Portland. This is the thing - this bull has spent the last two years going out about two, three jumps and spinning to the right. They're real strong jumps and he has lots of whip to the outside, and very few guys get around the corner, but for the last two weeks he's jumped way up in the air, only went two jumps and spun to the left. He changed his pattern. He's been ridden one time in his entire career, and that was Mike Lee at the 2010 PBR Finals. The last two trips that he's had he look like he should fit J.B. to a T."
'He should fit J.B. to a T.'
Past outs: "I would look at last year bucking
off Renato at Albuquerque (N.M.) and I would show him last week
bucking off Ben Jones at Portland, because his
style has really changed. If you watch those two videos, you'll see
he used to be dirty and tricky, and now he looks like an honest
bucker that the guys should love to get on."
SHEPHERD HILLS TRAPPER: "Austin Meier is one of the few guys who has ridden this bull, and just rode him again last week, but Shepherd Hills Trapper was having trouble keeping his feet under him. He stumbled a little bit as he was turning back, and he was still trying to buck through it the whole time, and could never really get it going. He puts his head so low - two inches off the ground - that he whips riders straight over his head."
Why he's here: "Because he's tough enough to buck off Fabiano (Vieira), Pistol Robinson, Mike Lee, Cody Nance, Harve Stewart and Valdiron and Kody Lostroh. He's bucked all of those guys off before."
Past outs: "I'd relook at him in the championship round at the World Finals with Fabiano on him."
SMACKDOWN: "Ninety-five percent of the time he goes to the left one jump out of the chute, lots of speed, whip to the outside. He was ridden once last year for 94.5 points by Robson Palermo at a Touring Pro."
Why he's here: "He's bucked Kody Lostroh off five times. That's a good enough reason to be here."
Past outs: (Robson's ride is on YouTube). "I've never seen it, but that's a good one. Paulo Lima riding him at New York last year or Kody Lostroh on him at Albuquerque would be a good one to watch."
Harve Stewart was the last man to get it done on Buckey.
BUCKEY: "He's probably going to spin to the
right - could go either way - he's going to have lots of speed and
kick and whip to the outside. He's bucked Guilherme Marchi off
twice and he hasn't been ridden since Portland a year ago when he
had an off-day with Harve Stewart. He also has calves that are
bucking at Sacramento, too."
Why he's here: "I thought Buckey was going to be No. 5 on the list until the trip he had last week, where he beat Asteroid. I couldn't move him ahead of Asteroid because Asteroid has done it for a lot longer period of time. He's beat Buckey a lot more times than Buckey beat Asteroid, but he just beat him last week."
Past outs: " Marco Eguche rode him 6 seconds last week when he beat Asteroid, so we really go to see him, and that would be a great trip to watch."
ASTEROID: "Before I looked for Asteroid to have lots of kick and be spinning to the left right after he hit the ground from the first jump, and continue to kick straight up. J.B. Mauney had him last week and was a little prepared for him to go to the left, and Asteroid took an extra jump or two and kicked straight up. He bucked so hard that very few guys could have made it to the spin, and then he went to the right. As he was bucking J.B. off, he was going to spin to the right, so not only is he that gifted athletically, he's smart. He's not going to pick somebody up if they're leaning off to the side. Occasionally on a rank bull that goes the same way every time, a rider might set a trap and be leaning that way or have their weight shifted that way, so the bull bucks and picks them up as he goes. It's something that gets a guy bucked off more than it helps him, but occasionally it'll help him ride a really rank bull. The rider can almost be ahead of the bull moving to the spot where the bull is going to be, and if the bull keeps going in that direction he keeps picking the rider up. Asteroid isn't going to play that way. He's not going to let them steal a ride."
Why he's here: "Because this is a competition between the best riders and the best bulls. The (reigning World Champion) is Silvano, and the best bull in the world right now is Asteroid - the best active bull right now."
Past outs: "The last two weeks show the contrast between Anaheim and Portland. There are several that are just that good, but there aren't any that are better."
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