FORT WORTH, Texas - The day sheet for the opening round of the PBR Brahma Super Bull Finals is missing one name.
Well, at least one particular 32-year-old wishes he was still competing.
Instead, fan-favorite Paulo Crimber moved back home with his family and is working with PBR Brazil as the director of judges. He does some judging, as well, and has also been working alongside Flavio Junqueira, the President of PBR Brazil, as a translator during meetings with English-speaking associates.
"I wish I could still ride," Crimber said. "I'm still young and I know I could do more, but unfortunately, the (two) broken necks kind of slowed me down."
After missing nearly three years, Crimber mounted a comeback attempt in 2011.
He used his injury exemptions and competed at five Built Ford Tough Series events and several Touring Pro Division events, before heading to Brazil, where he qualified for last year's PBR Brahma Super Bull Finals.
However, mounting injuries kept him from competing.
"When I got there, I couldn't get on one single bull," he said. "My back just locked up. I couldn't do anything and then I took the job they offered me to work for the PBR."
Crimber joked that he "pretty much (does) whatever needs to be done."
In many ways, he's an international ambassador for the sport.
"It's amazing how much it's grown over there."
He was recently in Las Vegas for the World Finals and used his trip to meet with various riders from the United States, Australia and Canada, in an effort to educate everyone on the continued growth of PBR Brazil.
"It's amazing how much it's grown over there. The last two years, they've given R$1 million," said Crimber, with regard to the bonus being paid out to the Brazilian champion. "This year, we had five Iron Cowboy formats and we brought five guys to the United States to the Finals. It's been tremendous. I think it's going to keep growing next year also."
Crimber said the events in Brazil are not even comparable to when he first started his career.
In fact, he estimated attendance and prize money might have been 10 percent of what it is now, and the quality of the events has gotten better. As a result, the number of riders competing has increased, as well.
While in Las Vegas, Crimber said that he and everyone else with PBR Brazil had been working every day, year round, to make themselves better.
In another couple years, Crimber said the PBR office in Rio Preto, Brazil, could mirror the headquarters located in Pueblo, Colo.
In the meantime, this weekend's Finals in Brazil are expected to draw 70-to-75,000 spectators to the outdoor arena each night.
While the larger Brazilian crowds are louder than then the U.S. crowds, because of their size, Crimber said that in the U.S., the indoor arenas are more compact and "you feel the energy, the adrenaline from the riders inside the building."
Follow Keith Ryan Cartwright on Twitter @PBR_KRC.
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