By: Justin Felisko
January 29, 2017
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Here are three things we learned from Round 2 and the 15/15 Bucking Battle at the Frontier Communications Sacramento Clash on Saturday night inside Golden 1 Center.
Davis regaining World Championship form (1-29-17)
2016 World Champion Cooper Davis arrived in Sacramento with only two qualified rides through the first three weeks of the 2017 season.
Davis now has three rides inside the Golden 1 Center in Sacramento in a 24-hour span.
The 22-year-old capped off the 15/15 Bucking Battle by riding Cooper Tires Brown Sugar for a season-high 89.5 points Saturday night moments after previously riding Lil Brute for 88 points in Round 2 of the Sacramento Clash.
Davis was given Brown Sugar as a re-ride bull after making 8 seconds on Wonder Flyer minutes earlier in the 15/15 Bucking Battle.
“I am real tired,” Davis said. “That bull has bucked me off I don’t know how many times. For some reason, I am happy to always have him.”
Davis was previously 0-for-3 against Brown Sugar.
The Jasper, Texas, bull rider earned 90 points toward the world standings for his second-place finish in the 15/15 Bucking Battle. He also earned 50 world points for finishing Round 2 in third place.
Davis, who rode El Capitan for 86.75 points in Round 1 on Friday night, heads into Championship Sunday leading the event average.
“It just takes a little bit of time to get back into the groove of things,” Davis said. “I don’t know. I am just real pumped up right now.”
Davis is one of nine riders that are a perfect 2-for-2 in Sacramento.
He has drawn Hurricane Hustler (1-0, BFTS) for Round 3. Hurricane Hustler bucked off Tyler Harr in 7.03 seconds on Saturday night.
World leader Jess Lockwood is second in the event average behind Davis, while two-time World Champion J.B. Mauney, Marco Eguchi and Joao Ricardo Vieira round out the Top 5.
Gage Gay won an action-packed Round 2 with an 89-point ride on The Kraken.
“I knew when I saw that draw earlier this week that I could win the round on him,” Gay said. “I have watched that bull all summer. He used to be out of the other side and be right there to the left. Chad just switched him out to the other side where is right there into my hand. I have been wanting to get on him ever since he did that because he is real showy. You can be a lot of points on him. He feels great.”
The 22-year-old has won two BFTS rounds this season.
Gay currently sits 10th overall in the event average and has the highest score of the 17 riders with one qualified ride on the scoreboard.
Dakota Buttar rode Sketchy Bob for 88.25 points and a second-place (60 world points) round finish.
Chase Outlaw rode Mortimer for 87.5 points and a fourth-place finish (40 world points).
Stetson Lawrence rounded out the Top 5 with an 87.25-point ride on Captain Jack. Lawrence earned 30 world points.
Davis has admitted openly that he has not been in the right state – physically and mentally – after winning the 2016 world title.
Therefore, he took steps earlier this week to try and get things back on track.
Davis rode three practice bulls on Tuesday to get himself physically into better bull riding shape, and this weekend he has been rooming at the Holiday Inn with Lockwood and Oklahoma City winner Derek Kolbaba.
“Getting on practice bulls this week helped,” Davis said. “I am having fun again. You start taking it as a business and it winds up not fun anymore. I went home and got on some bulls.
“It is fun getting to hang out with Jess and Derek. They both have been very successful this year. It is good being around guys like that. You can trust their opinion of things.”
2012 World Champion Bull Asteroid wins matchup against Mauney
There is the still the possibility that two-time World Champion J.B. Mauney and 2012 World Champion Bull Asteroid will meet again this season.
If not, Mauney made sure to pay his respects to the 10-year-old bovine athlete after Asteroid bucked off Mauney in 6.57 seconds during the 15/15 Bucking Battle by tipping his hat toward the veteran bull inside the arena.
“He is a good bull,” Mauney said. “I felt like I tried, but he was just a little better than me today. He beat me around the left and I got a little reared back. I moved too much and he felt me and went back the other way. Smart.”
It was the fifth time that Mauney and Asteroid have met on the Built Ford Tough Series and sixth time overall.
Asteroid has dominated Mauney outside of the 30-year-old’s sensational 93.5-point ride in 2012 at the BFTS event in San Antonio.
Mauney appeared on his way to an 8-second ride inside the Golden 1 Center before Asteroid reared back and got Mauney’s elbow fully extended.
Asteroid was marked a season-high 45 points.
Spotted Demon was the high-marked bull of the 15/15 Bucking Battle with a 4.66-second buckoff of Lockwood.
Saturday was only the third time in 13 BFTS outs that Asteroid has been marked 45 points or higher since reigning Stock Contractor of the Year Chad Berger purchased the bull and unretired him last year.
Asteroid is 13-0 since being unretired.
“He is a bucking bull and there is a lot to be said for them retiring him for a year and him coming back and bucking everyone off, so he has to be up there in the Top-2 or 3 of all time,” Mauney concluded.
Aparecido wins 15/15 Bucking Battle with rank 90.5-point ride on Jack Shot
Eduardo Aparecido stole the show though during the 15/15 Bucking Battle with a picturesque 90.5-point winning ride on Jack Shot.
“It is a good score,” Aparecido said with the help of Emilio Resende translating. “The bull bucks really good. He gave me a lot of points and a good score too. I am really happy to be 90 points becaue a couple of times I made good rides and the judges didn’t give me 90 points.”
Aparecido had great knee position on the back of Jack Shot as he worked his way to 8-seconds of magic.
“I fixed my legs after seeing him buck a couple of times. It wasn’t too hard because on bulls that spin into my hand I move my legs like that.”
Aparecido earned 150 points toward the world standings and is ranked 10thin the world standings.
The 26-year-old has a history of success in 15/15 Bucking Battles.
He placed second in the 15/15 Bucking Battle two weeks ago in Chicago and this weekend was his third career 15/15 Bucking Battle victory.
There were three additional rides beyond Aparecido and Davis in the 15/15 Bucking Battle.
Kaique Pacheco (87 points on Chocolate Shake) Mike Lee (87 points on American Hustle) and Chase Outlaw (87 points on Big Cat) all tied for third place and 60 world points.
According to Dr. Tandy Freeman, Shane Proctor injured his right wrist (riding hand) when he landed on his hand after his 86.5-point ride on Copper Star in Round 2.
Proctor was then bucked off by Crossfire in 2.19 seconds during the 15/15 Bucking Battle.
Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko
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