BRISBANE, Australia. – After three rounds of knock out style competition Cristiano Cunha won the very first Last Cowboy Standing event on Australian dirt, as part of the PBR Australia July Cup Series tour at Brisbane Entertainment Centre.
PBR Australia launched its 2016 season on Saturday night with a unique style of competition not yet seen in Australia. The competition would feature the nation’s most accomplished bull riders as well as select international riders from Brazil, USA and Mexico.
Unlike traditional events, this particular competition would feature 28 riders who are not only matched against random bulls but also against another rider.
With less than ten 8-second rides in round 1, the knock out format still saw 14 riders progress through to round 2 and 14 new match ups.
The second section started off with Cunha earning his spot in the championship round staying on his bull longer than Troy Wilkinson for 3.48 seconds. The second match up would see 4 time Australian Champ and soon to retire David Kennedy up against young up and comer Cody Heffernan for the most exciting match up of the night with both cowboys receiving scores. Kennedy would buck out first on Blackhawk for 85 points and then Heffernan on Devil’s Dance for the high marked ride of the night with 87 points.
Dave Mason on Big Bucks for 87 points progressed through to the short go round over Ryan Dirteater, as well as Mitch Paton on White Rhino for 83 points over Greg Deeraux and Robson Guedes with 79.5 points overLachlan Richardson. The remaining match ups would come down to the cowboy who stayed on the longest with Sam O’Connor and JC Davis filling the remaining two spots.
The top 7 guys all entered into the final round on a clean slate randomly matched against the top 7 PBR All Star bulls. The rules in this round are simple, post the highest score and walk home with all or part of the $15,000 prize pool.
With the first 6 cowboys all bucking off without scores, it came down to the very last ride of the night – Cunha on Dunne’s Plant Hire for 81.75. Being the only cowboy to post a score in the championship round, Cunha will go back to Brazil as Australia’s Last Cowboy Standing and with all $15,000.
PBR General Manager Glen Young said this event may be a unique bull riding format, but the LCS has proven to be a real winner with Australian fans.
“Originally concerned that our event was up against the English Premier League Liverpool Game, as well as an Australian Rugby Union Test along with National Rugby League leaders the Broncos all playing in the same town and on the same weekend as the PBR’s Last Cowboy Standing, I have to admit I am overwhelmed that we broke our venue attendance record and played to a capacity crowd this Saturday night.”
“With our ten year anniversary in 2016, the PBR’s growth down under has exceeded all expectations with continual growth in attendances, sponsorships, television broadcasts and a social media following that is equal to if not greater than many other main stream Australian major league sports.”
Tickets for the 2016 event go on sale Sunday July 18 available from www.pbraustralia.com.au.
1st Cody Heffernan – 85.25
2nd Troy Wilkinson – 85
3rd Cristiano Cunha – 84.75
4th/5th David Kennedy – 83.25
4th/5th Ryan Dirteater – 83.25
6th Dave Mason – 82
1st/2nd Cody Heffernan – 87
1st/2nd Dave Mason – 87
3rd David Kennedy – 85
4th Mitch Paton – 83
5th Robson Guedes – 79.5
1st Cristiano Cunha – 81.75
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