By: Slade Long
September 08, 2016
PUEBLO, Colo. – Springfield, Missouri, isn’t far from Oklahoma meaning you can expect to see a lot of the same bulls that we saw in Tulsa and Thackerville these past few weekends. The biggest difference is that reigning Stock Contractor of the Year Chad Berger only had a few bulls in Oklahoma, but he’s bringing a full load to Springfield.
Pearl Harbor was not in the Thackerville 15/15 Bucking Battle last weekend, but he will be in Springfield. He will be joined by SweetPro’s Bruiser, who will be making his third 15/15 Bucking Battle appearance in as many weeks.
Pearl Harbor and Bruiser are in a virtual tie atop the World Champion Bull qualifier standings at the moment. Jared Allen’s Air Time and SweetPro’s Long John both have a chance to knock them both down a notch once they reach eight outs on the season, but even with that, Pearl Harbor and Bruiser have all but clinched their spots in the World Champion Bull contest in Las Vegas.
It would take multiple poor outs for either one of them to slip out of contention, and that’s not likely to happen. What matters right now is simply qualifying, because the World Champion Bull race starts over from scratch at the PBR Built Ford Tough World Finals. With the goal simply being settled in the Top 8, both contenders are in prime position to secure a trip to Vegas where anything can happen.
Meanwhile, several other bulls with their eyes on the World Championship race are also set to go in Springfield’s 15/15 Bucking Battle.
J.A.R.S. / Gene Owen’s Seven Dust is trending upward, and was tied for the highest marked bull in Thackerville last weekend after what were arguably his best two outs of the season. This will be Seven Dust’s 13th out of the season, but only his best eight will count in the World Championship race, so whenever he posts a big bull score he’ll knock one of his lesser ones off the board. This is a huge advantage considering he started out slow this season with several low-marked outs. He’s currently eighth in qualifier points right now, but the bulls ahead of him or not separated by much. Another 45+ point bull score in Springfield could move him up as many as three or four spots.
Crossfire, Wicked and Beaver Creek Beau will all be in Springfield as well. Crossfire is third at the moment, while Wicked sits in fifth and Beaver Creek Beau is tied for sixth. Big Cat and Little Red Jacket are 10th and 11th in points right now, and they both have a great shot at moving up here.
2015 World Champion SweetPro’s Long John will return to action in Springfield. We last saw him on tour in Billings back in April. He had a health issue over the summer and spent some time at home. Long John has six outs this year so far, with this weekend’s 15/15 Bucking Battle being his seventh. He will need just one more out on the season to reach eight, and should be on an easy pace to qualify for the World Championship race once he does.
Round 1 in Springfield will be another ABBI Classic round, and the winners from Tulsa and Thackerville will have a rubber match here. Deep Water won the Classic in Tulsa, and he will go against Joao Ricardo Vieira here. H. D. Page’s Organized Crime not only won the Thackerville Classic, he was impressive enough to tie Seven Dust for the highest marked bull of the whole event. He’ll face Mike Lee Friday night.
Springfield will also host an ABBI Maturity, which is a bull competition among ABBI registered bulls that are 5 years of age and older. Round 2 will feature 28 of those bulls with looking eacn some of the prize money on the line.
There will be a lot on the line for the bulls in Springfield, so look for a shift in the standings and some outstanding out this weekend.
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