By: Justin Felisko
April 23, 2017
TACOMA, Wash. – Here are three things we learned from the Tacoma Invitational, presented by Cooper Tires, this weekend at the Tacoma Dome.
Pacheco cuts into Aparecido’s lead atop world standings (4-23-17)
Kaique Pacheco – the defending champion of Last Cowboy Standing – will make his return to Las Vegas in three weeks with an opportunity to finish the first half of the Built Ford Tough Series as the world No. 1 bull rider.
Pacheco regained the world No. 2 ranking from J.B. Mauney and is now within 885 points of world leader Eduardo Aparecido after going 2-for-3 for a fourth-place finish (155 world points) this weekend.
The 22-year-old bounced back from 7.14-second buckoff against Set ‘em Up Joe in Round 2 to ride Naughty List for 88.25 points in the Built Ford Tough Championship Round.
“I am very happy to ride this bull,” Pacheco said. “I got on him in Albuquerque and he didn’t buck good with me. I was very happy to take him in the short go because he is a very good bull. I see he bucks a lot of times. He gave me a good score.”
Pacheco began his weekend with an 84.5-point ride on Lone Wolf on Saturday night.
The 2015 Rookie of the Year has gone 5-for-8 in the past two events and has gained 400 points on Aparecido.
Meanwhile, Mauney dropped back to No. 3 in the world rankings after being bucked off by Shakey (2.58 seconds) and Joe Blow (7.54 seconds) on Sunday afternoon.
Aparecido finished 1-for-3 with an 83-point ride on Little Hank, but he earned no points toward the world standings.
The 26-year-old nearly rode Boot Jack in the championship round before being bucked off at the 7.66-second mark.
Pacheco will head to IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida, on Monday for a week of training in preparation for the 2017 Last Cowboy Standing on May 12-13.
Pacheco, the runner-up in the last two World Championship races, went a perfect 4-for-4 last year at Last Cowboy Standing to jump from 13th to the world No. 1 ranking.
“That was my favorite victory here in the United States,” Pacheco concluded. “I am ready.”
Wing becomes the fourth rider to win multiple events this year
Stormy Wing continued his career-year on Sunday afternoon by riding More Big Bucks for 89 points and his second victory of 2017.
“It was kind of a blur, like I say every time,” Wing said. “He was around to the left and pretty bucky today. I was just getting there.”
Wing’s walk-off victory came courtesy of a flawless 3-for-3 performance inside the Tacoma Dome.
The 27-year-old followed up his Round 1 victory on Saturday night (88.75 points on Locke & Loaded) by riding Cowboy Up for 84.5 points in Round 2.
Wing, with the encouragement of Mauney and Chad Berger, then selected More Big Bucks with the first pick of the championship-round draft.
The Dalhart, Texas, cowboy earned 605 points toward the world standings and is up to seventh in the rankings. He trails Aparecido by 1,375 points.
Wing joins Aparecido (3), Jess Lockwood (2) and Derek Kolbaba (2) as the only riders to win multiple events this season.
He had previously never won two BFTS events in one season.
“I am just doing my job,” Wing said. “That is all I can really say. I feel blessed and am happier than anybody, but I just have to keep it going.”
Wing had bucked off five bulls in a row since winning the Ty Murray Invitational last month. He also had missed the last BFTS event in Billings, Montana, because of a calf injury.
Joao Ricardo Vieira, (3-for-3, 305 world points), Claudio Montanha Jr. (3-for-3, 260 world points), Pacheco and Emilio Resende (2-for-3, 153.3 world points).
The fifth-place finish was extremely important for Resende.
The 2012 PBR Rookie of the Year began the weekend as an alternate and ranked 40th in the world standings, but he will now leave with a spot in the draw for Last Cowboy Standing as the No. 31 rider in the world.
Teel wins Round 2; hangs onto rookie lead
2012 PRCA champion Cody Teel maintained his lead atop the Rookie of the Year race despite Montanha’s perfect weekend by winning Round 2.
Teel won his second round of the season by covering Tequila Sunrise for 86.5 points.
“That was a really great draw,” Teel said. “I saw him last night with Cooper and you have to take advantage of them.”
Teel admitted the stakes are sometimes higher when you have a bull that appears to be an easier bull compared to getting on previously unridden bulls Mystikal and Hey Jack two weeks ago in Billings.
“Oh yeah, there is no doubt there is a little more pressure on you,” Teel said. “You can deny it, but there is because you know you are supposed to ride him. That is when you put it on autopilot and forget that and trust your ability. Let it work for you and not against you.”
Teel was later bucked off by Dusty’s Revenge in 2.52 seconds during the championship round.
The 24-year-old leads Montanha by a slim 141.67 points in the rookie standings.
Montanha hadn’t ridden three consecutive bulls since his stellar debut in Kansas City, Missouri, two months ago.
Dener Barbosa, currently third in the rookie standings, was bucked off by Voo Doo Too in 4.58 seconds during the championship round after covering his first two bulls of the event.
There were multiple injuries on Sunday afternoon that led to a series of riders of missing the Built Ford Tough Championship Round.
According to Dr. Tandy Freeman, Stetson Lawrence broke his pelvis during his dismount in Round 2 after riding Captain Jack for 84.75 points.
Matt Triplett did not compete in the championship round after spraining his right wrist (riding hand, triangular fibrocartilage tear) during his 4.67-second buckoff against Yesterday’s Wine in Round 2.
Triplett will get X-rays this week and is questionable for Last Cowboy Standing.
Rubens Barbosa reinjured a previously sprained right ankle during his 1.74-second buckoff against Moleek in Round 2. He did not compete in the championship round.
Barbosa will get X-rays this week and is questionable for Last Cowboy Standing.
Gage Gay reinjured his right shoulder during 4.86-second buckoff against Machinery Auctioneer’s Colonel and did not compete in the championship round.
He too will undergo X-rays this week and is questionable for Last Cowboy Standing.
Dakota Buttar sprained his left elbow (riding hand, UCL) when he hung up after being thrown by Smooth Sailing (2.86 seconds) in Round 2. He did not compete in the championship round.
Buttar is doubtful for Last Cowboy Standing and will get an MRI back home in Canada.
Luis Blanco reinjured his left thumb during his 84.75-point ride on Billy Bat Skat in Round 2. He did not compete in the championship round.
Blanco will get X-rays this week and is questionable for Last Cowboy Standing.
Three-time World Champion Silvano Alves bruised his right forearm during his 83.25-point ride on Flat Top Pete in Round 2. Alves did not compete in the championship round.
Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko
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