Pacheco and Davis Continue their Duel at the Top

By: Justin Felisko
September 04, 2016

Kaique Pacheco is 7-for-13 since the beginning of the second half in Nashville. Photo: Andy Watson /

Kaique Pacheco is 7-for-13 since the beginning of the second half in Nashville. Photo: Andy Watson /

THACKERVILLE, Okla. – Here are three things we learned from the WinStar World Casino and Resort Invitational Sunday night.

Pacheco and Davis continue to jockey for world No. 1 ranking (9-4-16)

Kaique Pacheco showed the poise of a potential World Champion Sunday night. Pacheco bounced back from two buckoffs on Saturday with two qualified rides in Round 2 and the Built Ford Tough Championship Round in an effort to keep pace with world leader Cooper Davis in an ever-so-close World Championship race.

Pacheco finished the weekend in third place with 282.5 world points, but it was his 87.25-point ride on Kill The Lights to win the Built Ford Tough Championship Round and his 85.5-point ride on Recovery Time in Round 2 that has him still on the heels of Davis.

The 2015 Rookie of the Year trails Davis, who finished the Built Ford Tough Series event in second place, by only 19.67 points in the world standings.

“It helps a lot tonight because I have been riding really good since the break,” Pacheco said with the help of Silvano Alves translating. “It is very important to ride good because I have to keep getting points. I know I need to ride my bulls and get my points. I need rides and points every day.”

Pacheco is 7-for-13 since the BFTS resumed in Nashville with the Music City Knockout.

Pacheco’s championship-round win was his fifth BFTS round win of the season and 12th of his career.

“I rode him before at the Finals, but he didn’t buck really good and I fell off (7.65) seconds,” Pacheco said. “I am very happy because tonight he had good spin and I rode really good in front of the bull the whole time. I rode perfect.”

Pacheco earned 142.5 points of his world points in Thackerville by tying with Jess Lockwood for third in the event average.

The 21-year-old admitted he made a poor decision during the 15/15 Bucking Battle on Saturday attempting to ride Hammer It Again. Pacheco decided to move his bull rope closer to the middle of Hammer It Again, instead of leaving it in his normal position to the side.

“The first bull (Kongo) last night I knew was a good bull,” Pacheco said. “He jumped forward and I wasn’t good. My second bull was a really good bull and I watched the video of him all the time from me in the 15/15 (in Tulsa). I put my rope in the middle this week and I moved it to much. I should have went inside.”

Pacheco appeared on track to leave Thackerville once again as the No. 1 bull rider a night after Davis passed him, but Davis also showed the poise of a champion and put forth a rebound performance in the championship round.

Davis, who finished second overall, responded to his 3.25-second buckoff against El Diablo in Round 2 by riding Red Cloud for 86.75 points in the championship round. He earned 60 world points for the second-place finish in the round and 240 world points for placing second in the event average.

The Jasper, Texas, bull rider rode Cool Hand Luke for 86.5 points and a fifth-place tie in Round 1 (22.5 world points).

Davis said he tried not to worry about what happened in Round 2 or the world title race.

“You have to block all of that out,” Davis said following his ride on Red Cloud. “You have to fight through it.”

No longer a house of horrors

2008 World Champion Guillerme Marchi’s career was nearly ended in Thackerville last season when he tore his left MCL/PCL attempting to rideCut the Cord.

One year later and Marchi is celebrating his first event victory in over 16 months despite never getting surgery to repair the torn ligaments.

Marchi became the first rider to successfully cover What’s Under Your Hood with an event-winning 86.5 points in the championship round.

“This means a lot to me, especially because I hurt my knee last year,” Marchi said. “I came back this year and there were a lot of things in my head.”

What’s Under Your Hood had bucked off five in a row on the BFTS and 21 overall.

“I picked that bull because I saw that bull last week,” Marchi said. “I was supposed to pick that bull and Marco (Eguchi) picked that bull. This week I said I need to pick that bull. It worked good for me. This last bull was right there to the right. When they kick fast, they are better for me and I find my position.”

Marchi then watched on with a contingent of friends, including Alves and Pacheco, as 2004 World Champion Mike Lee failed to win Thackerville for the second time in three years when he got bucked off by Buckle Up in 7.26 seconds.

Alves also had a chance for the victory before bucking off Wired Child in 7.87 seconds after Marchi had ridden What’s Under Your Hood.

Marchi finished third in the round for 50 world points.

The 34-year-old began the weekend with a Round 1-winning 88.75-point ride on Losing My Religion and kicked off Sunday with an 82.5-point ride on The Jungle.

“Both bulls (What’s Under Your Hood and The Jungle) come on the right and into my hand,” Marchi said. “Just good bulls. Jungle kind of a little bit more hard for me. He was kind of slow and moved forward. Because I am a little heavy, he made me sit on my pockets a little bit.”

Marchi earned 550 world points and is now 17th in the world standings.

Coming in behind Marchi, Davis and Pacheco was Jess Lockwood (205 world points) and Eduardo Aparecido (150 world points). Lee finished in sixth place with 130 world points.

Aparecido quietly wins Round 2

Aparecido is trying to keep himself in the world title race, but the success of Davis and Pacheco has made it hard for him to gain ground on the top two riders in the world.

The 26-year-old tied for second in the 15/15 Bucking Battle Saturday and finished the regular-formatted event in fifth place with 150 world points.

Like the two young guns, Aparecido also found a way to bounce back from adversity in Thackerville.

Aparecido responded from his 7.88-second buckoff against Crazy Cross in Round 1 to finish Thackerville with three consecutive rides, including his 88-point ride on Jump Street in the 15/15 Bucking Battle.

The sixth-ranked rider in the world standings won Round 2 with an 87.25-point ride on Mustache Sally and then ended his night with an 84-point ride on Sheep Creek for a fifth-place finish in the championship round.

“I was very happy because I am riding really good,” Aparecido said through Alves. “My movement has been really good. This is good momentum. These were not rank bulls, but they were really good bulls.

“(Jump Street) was a rank bull and I had to stay in perfect position to stay on. He went left, right and kicked. I had to use good movement.”

Aparecido is 1,360.84 points behind Pacheco.

Gage Gay placed second in the round for 60 world points with his 86.5-point ride on Come On Baby. The problem for Gay was he sustained a concussion during the ride and had to miss the championship round.

Cody Nance was third with an 85.75-point ride on Johnny B and 50 world points, while Shane Proctor rode Find Jesus for 85.25 points and a fifth-place finish (30 world points).

This weekend was Proctor’s first two-ride weekend since winning Iron Cowboy in February.

2004 World Champion Mike Lee placed sixth with 85 points aboard Johnny Bones Jones. Lee picked up 15 world points.

Tyler Harr, who is trying to qualify for his first career World Finals, notched five points with an 84.75-point ride on Blue Moon.

Injury Updates

According to Dr. Tandy Freeman, Paulo Lima did not compete in the championship round after aggravating an old left knee injury during Round 2. Lima is probable for next weekend’s event in Springfield, Missouri.

Robson Palermo did not compete Sunday after sustaining a chest injury when he was bucked off by Midnight Train (4.21 seconds) in the 15/15 Bucking Battle on Saturday. Palermo is questionable for Springfield.

Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko

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