By: Kristian Limas
November 06, 2016
LAS VEGAS – It was pretty obvious to anybody listening to Ty Pozzobonanswer questions in the press conference following Round 4 of the Built Ford Tough World Finals that the young bull rider from Merritt, British Columbia, is still soaking in what has been an unbelievable week.
Pozzobon remained a perfect 4-for-4 at T-Mobile Arena after riding Rebel Yell for 86.25 points Saturday night and maintained his hold of the lead in the event aggregate. He joined Ryan Dirteater, who rode Swashbuckler for 86.5 points, as the only riders who have covered every bull they have faced this week.
It has been a dream week for Pozzobon, and that has worked to his advantage, because anything is possible in a dream.
“I feel like I can probably ride Godzilla right now,” Pozzobon said.
Pozzobon has emerged as a Cinderella story this week and, considering the multiple injuries he has dealt with over the course of 2016, simply reaching the World Finals would be considered a fairytale ending for many.
But that’s not enough for Pozzobon, who could become the first Canadian ever to win the World Finals event title in the history of the PBR.
After winning the 2016 PBR Canada title, it became clear that an even bigger door to the World Finals had flung open for Pozzobon and that he could shine on the biggest stage in bull riding.
“With how my year went, I really did,” Pozzobon said. “When I was riding this summer, I almost thought about quitting those Canadian events because I could be (on the Built Ford Tough Series), but I stuck with the plan and now I’m sitting here.”
He started his season in the summer where he attended the PBR Canada event in Toefield, Alberta, as an alternate. Though he didn’t record a ride there, it set him on his eventual path to the World Finals.
“Once I started travelling, Chase (Outlaw) flew up with me for the summer,” Pozzobon said. “We had a plan to go together and we’ve just been feeding off each other.”
Pozzobon secured the PBR Canada title in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, in October after making his season debut at the Nampa, Idaho, BFTS event. With the Canadian title in hand, Pozzobon returned for the BFTS regular-season finale in Tucson, Arizona, where he went 2-for-2.
He has ridden all five bulls he’s faced since Round 1 in Tucson, and will take on two more Sunday.
Pozzobon selected Margy Time for Sunday’s Round 5. He last faced Margy Time at the 2014 World Finals where he was bucked off in 3.07 seconds. J.B. Mauney rode Margy Time for 87 points on Thursday in Round 2.
He’s done it all with a broken hand that he sustained in Round 1 in Tucson and admitted he will probably need surgery after the World Finals.
“I feel it when I put my glove on and after,” Pozzobon said. “But all I feel when I’m riding is just the bull between my legs. I’m not really thinking about it, I don’t really care to be honest.”
Pozzobon gave a lot of credit to his fellow riders for helping make his World Finals experience a good one and said that simply being here and having fun has played a huge role in his performance.
“I think a big part of how you perform is who you surround yourself with,” Pozzobon said. “Being here with the Top 35 bull riders in the world rubs off on a guy.”
That was reinforced when Pozzobon was informed that Mauney intended to select Jared Allen’s Air Time with the first pick in the Round 5 draft.
“That’s why (Mauney) is my hero,” Pozzobon said. “Chase Outlaw is my hero. Douglas Duncan, Tyler Harr and all my friends. Tanner Byrne and everybody, we just feed off each other.”
That sense of comradery has been the underlying theme of his World Finals run. Whatever outcome Sunday brings, Pozzobon intends to savor every moment he gets riding alongside the greats of the sport.
“After I rode tonight, I got to help Cooper Davis get on,” Pozzobon said. “I got to help J.B. get on, it’s like we’re a bunch of badasses just having fun.”
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