By: Justin Felisko
September 21, 2016
PUEBLO, Colo. – Two-time World Champion J.B. Mauney will not be competing this weekend at the Rumble in the Rockies as he continues to recover from a rib injury.
Mauney sustained a broken rib last week at the Charlotte Invitational, presented by Cooper Tires, when Who Dey stepped on him during the Built Ford Tough Championship Round.
“Yeah, ribs are sore as hell,” Mauney told PBR.com. “Taking this weekend off.”
The No. 3 ranked bull rider in the world standings is 860.33 points behind world leader Kaique Pacheco.
Mauney said Wednesday morning it was too early to tell if he would be able to compete on Oct. 1-2 at the Wrangler Long Live Cowboys Classic.
The 29-year-old is the latest World Champion contender to have to miss time because of injury.
No. 2 Cooper Davis is still home in Jasper, Texas, recovering from surgery to repair a broken clavicle. Davis may be able to return to competition in Eugene depending on how his recovery continues.
Davis is 590.33 points behind Pacheco.
Therefore, Pacheco, who was victorious in Charlotte, has a major opportunity at The Broadmoor World Arena to gain further separation from his two toughest challengers.
Pacheco has drawn Cheap Trick 2 (8-1, BFTS) for Round 1. Cheap Trick 2 hasn’t been ridden on the BFTS level since Guilherme Marchi rode him for 84.25 points in April 2013. Mike Lee (88.5 points) and Silvano Alves (83.5 points) have ridden him at non-BFTS events.
There are only five BFTS events remaining until the 2016 Built Ford Tough World Finals on Nov. 2-6 in Las Vegas at T-Mobile Arena and injuries have become a major storyline, even for riders outside the Top 10.
No. 16 Tanner Byrne is taking a week off after aggravating a hand injury in Charlotte, while Ben Jones has also decided to take another week off after originally believing he would be returning from reconstructive shoulder surgery.
No. 19 Mason Lowe is back in the draw after missing last week with a left groin strain. Lowe takes on Powder Keg (0-0, BFTS) in Round 1.
Meanwhile, Chase Outlaw is returning to competition for the first time since separating his left shoulder in Nashville attempting to ride Cooper Tires Semper Fi last month.
Outlaw has drawn Macho Man (0-1, BFTS).
It will be just his second bull of the BFTS season after missing the first half following left shoulder surgery in November. He had previously had right shoulder surgery in April 2015.
Outlaw used a stellar summer run to rise to 29th in the world standings and is still ranked 31st.
Speaking of injuries, Brant Atwood received good news from Dr. Tandy Freeman when he learned he actually did not break his right clavicle last weekend in Charlotte. Atwood was cleared to return this weekend as an alternate with a mild right sternoclavicular sprain, a bruised shoulder and a sprained neck.
Atwood is 39th in the world and only 35 points behind No. 35 Cody Heffernan. He has drawn Joe’s Over The Top (3-0, BFTS).
There are three additional alternates and one BlueDEF invite competing in Colorado Springs.
No. 36 Fraser Babbington, No. 37 Jorge Valdiviezo and No. 39 Kurt Shephard are all riding and are trying to get back within the Top 35 as they look to qualify for their first World Finals.
Babbington takes on The Rocker (10-4, BFTS) Saturday night. Valdiviezo has Bad Grandma (2-2, BFTS) and Shephard will look for 8 seconds aboard Page Break (9-0, BFTS). Shephard was bucked off by Page Break in 4.91 seconds in Sterling, Colorado, in 2014.
There are only 51.66 points separating Heffernan from Shephard.
No. 46 Emilio Resende won last weekend’s BlueDEF Tour event in Allentown, Pennsylvania, and he has previously qualified for three consecutive World Finals before coming up short last season.
Resende takes on Rusty Spur (0-0, BFTS) in Round 1.
The 29-year-old went 3-for-3 in Allentown. He rode Night Sweats for 81 points in Round 1, Droopy for 85 points in Round 2 and Jake Brake for 81 points in the championship round.
Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko
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