The riders, staff and management of the Professional Bull Riders mourn the loss of legendary bull Little Yellow Jacket, who passed away on Monday, Sept. 19, in Graham, N.C. The only three-time World Champion Bull in PBR history was 15 years old.
"Little Yellow Jacket was a tremendous athlete, and the mere mention of his name brings great memories to fans of our sport," said PBR CEO Jim Haworth. "He will certainly be remembered as one of the all-time greats."
The PBR announced in July that Little Yellow Jacket would be the first recipient of the Brand of Honor, which will be presented each year to a bull for exemplary performance. He will be honored in Las Vegas on Oct. 25 during the Heroes & Legends Ceremony, which will also include the induction of Tater Porter and Brent Thurman into the PBR Ring of Honor, the presentation of the Sharon Shoulders Award to Leanne Lambert, and the presentation of the Jim Shoulders Lifetime Achievement Award to Rob Smets.
Owned by Joe Berger, Tom Teague, and Bernie Taupin, Little Yellow Jacket won the World Champion Bull title in 2002, 2003 and 2004. He is immortalized in a statue located in front of the PBR headquarters along with the only three-time World Champion bull rider, Adriano Moraes.
Asked about his famous bull, Teague said simply, "He was the
only three-time World Champion Bull in the PBR. I think that says
it all." Teague also expressed gratitude to the Berger family for
having raised such a great animal, and for allowing him to buy a
share in him.
"The mere mention of his name brings great memories to fans of our sport."
Little Yellow Jacket gained worldwide fame in 2003 when he bucked off two-time World Champion Chris Shivers in less than two seconds. He earned $50,000 for his victory while keeping Shivers from collecting $1 million.
He competed in the PBR from 1999-2005, and appeared in the World Finals from 2001-05. He had a buckoff rate of 84.4 percent, and an average buckoff time of 2.66 seconds. The 14 riders who managed to achieve 8 seconds on him had an average score of 93. Michael Gaffney rode Little Yellow Jacket for 96.5 points at Nampa, Idaho, in 2004, tying the PBR record for highest score.
His last set of natural calves will be born in 2012.
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