AUSTIN, Texas – The first day of the Wrangler Long Live Cowboys Classic, presented by Frontier Communications, will feature Round 1 and a 15/15 Bucking Battle.
Claudio Montanha Jr. on Z26 Acting Crazy:
This is a rematch from Albuquerque, New Mexico, where Montanha scored 87.75 points on Acting Crazy. The bull went into his hand, and he handled him easily and jumped off on his feet. In a round where many guys aren’t matched up well, Montanha is.
Stormy Wing on 300 Ice Pick:
Cooper Davis scored 88.5 points on this bull in Thackerville, Oklahoma. He went to the right with Davis, which will be away from Wing’s hand, but the bull fits Wing’s style well enough. This is a bull you can be aggressive on, and Wing is an aggressive rider.
Cooper Davis on 22 El Guerro:
El Guerro threw Davis off at the beginning of the 2016 season, but this is a rideable bull, and after last week it’s hard to go against Davis. He should be able to come away with some kind of score here, but probably not a round-winning one.
Cody Teel on 135 Hey Jack:
This bull had a pretty solid reputation for being unrideable until Teel proved that theory wrong in Billings, Montana, earlier this year. Teel made him look easy, and sure enough the next two guys to try him both got a score. Before Teel rode him, Hey Jack had 28 straight buckoffs and was 14-0 at the BFTS level.
15/15 Bucking Battle:
Claudio Montanha Jr. on 122 Cooper Tires Semper Fi:
This is one of the more dangerous bulls going just because of his style. He has big horns, and most guys who get thrown off of him end up getting thrown off the front. Semper Fi can be a fairly conventional bull and just spin with a lot of backup, or he can be downright miserable with a lot of hopping, skipping and no rhythm. Either way he wants to throw the rider forward, and Brazilian riders may be a little better at avoiding that than mid-level American riders because the riding style they tend to come here with has them sitting back more. Chasing the front end isn’t the answer to this bull – staying off of it is.
Marco Eguchi on 32Y SweetPro’s Bruiser:
Bruiser had his best out of the year last week. He didn’t present any surprises, he just did what he always does, only stronger. Eguchi has been on him before and didn’t last three seconds. He has a chance here, but he will have to be mistake free.
Rubens Barbosa on W37 Cochise:
Barbosa has had Cochise three times before with no luck, including just last week in the Springfield 15/15 Bucking Battle. This is not the best draw for a right-handed rider, but he’s a lot better to ride than he was 12-18 months ago.
Cody Nance on 40Y Chocolate Shake:
Chocolate Shake gave up a couple of rides early this season to Chase Outlaw and Kaique Pacheco, but he hasn’t been ridden since. Nance had him in Little Rock, Arkansas, in March and didn’t get it done, but he did hang in for more than six seconds, so he may have a feel for this bull and do better this time around.
Joao Ricardo Vieira on 98A Hurricane Hustler:
This bull has only been ridden twice in 24 outs, but both rides were by lefties. If you look a little closer, you will find that he hasn’t faced a lot of left-handed riders period. Almost all of the top-tier guys he’s gone against are right-handed, so Vieira may expose him here.
Cody Teel on 2125 Wicked Stick:
These two met at a lower level event over the summer, and the bull won, but don’t count Teel out. Wicked Stick usually goes to the right, and Teel is right-handed. This is a bull that doesn’t do much to help the rider, so they have to fight to regain position the whole eight seconds, but Teel is a fighter and he isn’t overmatched by this bull.
Stetson Lawrence on A1 Mudshark:
Mudshark may be one of the more rideable bulls in this round. He’s not easy, but at the BFTS level he’s 4-3, which is a lot more manageable than the bulls on either side of him here. Lawrence is a hard guy to read. We’ve seen him stay on bulls that are way stronger than this one, and he’s also fallen off bulls that are a lot weaker. If Sir Lawrence the Dragon Slayer shows up here, he should get a score.
Stormy Wing on 806 Speed Demon:
Wing has a pretty good draw in Round 1, and a pretty tough one here. I don’t know if any of the riders have an answer for this bull other keep your hand closed and hope for the best. This is a smaller bull but he has a lot of power, action and speed. Everything you need to throw off all but the luckiest riders. On his best days, Speed Demon is reminiscent of famous PBR bull Skat Kat.
Dener Barbosa on 125 Catfish John:
This is a good draw in this round, but he’s not nearly as good a draw for lefties. Barbosa will have a tough time going away from his hand. This bull is a lot like Wicked Stick in that he doesn’t kick up enough to help the rider, and he is a much bigger challenge going away from the rider’s hand.
Chase Outlaw on -904 Fire & Smoke:
This is an interesting matchup in that these two aren’t really on the same wavelength. Outlaw is an old school kind of rider who goes all in every time, and Fire & Smoke is a little deceptive and subtle. This may be statistically the best draw in the round for a left-handed rider, because he goes to the left, and he’s been ridden a lot. But, this isn’t a bull you can take the Ricky Bobby approach with. Outlaw will have to match him jump for jump and not override him, which is the real danger here.
Derek Kolbaba on 204 Deep Water:
There’s a little Russian Roulette going on here. Most of the time Deep Water is a fairly tough bull, but manageable. On his normal trip he’s similar to Catfish John, but he gets off the ground a little more. Occasionally he can be more like Bushwacker. So, for Kolbaba this is like being shot out of a cannon, but with a flaky crew who may or may not have used too much black powder.
Jess Lockwood on 57Z Jack Shot:
We’ve seen this bull on the highlight reel several times, but never with a left-handed rider because no lefty has ridden him yet. Regardless, Jack Shot is a good bull to draw anywhere. He’s like a lighter version of Bruiser who goes to the right.
Cooper Davis on TLW’s Big Cat:
Whatever forces are behind the luck of the draw really want this matchup to happen. Davis drew Big Cat in the Tulsa, Oklahoma, 15/15 Bucking Battle and was fouled. A few weeks later he drew him in the Thackerville 15/15 Bucking Battle but he had to sit that round out and was replaced by Marco Eguchi. I don’t know if that means this bull is bad juju for Davis, but no rider has a better chance at Big Cat. Davis should be the guy who can get it done if he can get past the plane of the chute gate without incident.
Eduardo Aparecido on 222 Mystikal:
Aparecido took this bull 7.72 seconds in Tulsa just last month, and he’s a good bet to get a score here. Mystikal likes to go to the right, and that will be into Aparecido’s wheelhouse.
Kaique Pacheco on 37Z Udder Lover:
This bull will go to the left, but he’s a great draw in this or any round. He’s honest, and has good timing. Pacheco has been in a slump, but he’s overdue to come out of it.
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