PUEBLO, Colo. – When you are the reigning PBR Stock Contractor of the Year, it is safe to say you have top-notch quality bucking bulls.
Therefore, it comes as no surprise that Chad Berger, who has won the past two PBR Stock Contractor of the Year titles, has four bulls competing at the upcoming 2015 Wrangler National Finals Rodeo.
Less than two months after hauling a PBR-high 17 bulls to the Thomas & Mack Center for the 2015 Built Ford Tough World Finals, Berger will unleash Cooper Tire’s Brown Sugar, Redbone, Semper Fi and Stuntin Like My Daddy during the NFR’s bull riding competitions.
“I get to take some to the National Finals Rodeo,” Berger said. “My heart is in the PBR and to be able to go to Las Vegas to the biggest rodeo of the year is pretty exciting. I look forward to that too.”
While Berger’s four bulls were not World Champion Bull contenders this year, they were still stiff competition for PBR challengers.
When it comes to PRCA competition, not one of Berger’s bovine athletes headed to the NFR was ridden this season. According to ProBullStats.com, the four bulls went a combined 16-0 in PRCA competition.
In fact, Redbone took care of defending PRCA bull riding champion and No. 1-ranked bull rider Sage Kimzey at the Cheyenne Frontier Days in 4.25 seconds.
J.W. Harris was the last to ride Redbone, doing so for 89.75 points to win the Built Ford Tough Series event in Allentown, Pennsylvania.
Harris called Redbone one of his favorite Berger bulls earlier this season when discussing Berger’s fifth Stock Contractor of the Year awards.
“Shoot, Chad is just one of the guys,” Harris said. “Hell, he (had) a bull (Smooth Operator) in the running for World Champion Bull and he will be back here bullshitting with us. He wants to see us do good, especially on his bulls. It is fun having him around.”
Brown Sugar had the most combined outs of all four bulls at all levels combined (26) and was ridden only two times this season. First, Joao Ricardo Vieira won the 15/15 Bucking Battle in Seattle with an 89.75-point effort on him and then Mason Lowe recorded an 89.5-point ride on him in Binford, North Dakota.
Brown Sugar averaged 43.83 points per BFTS out.
“(Brown Sugar is) arguably the classiest bull in the business,” wrote Slade Long of ProBullStats.com in an upcoming story in “8 Seconds.” “Brown Sugar is the bull every rider wants to draw and none of them are afraid of. Yet, he was ridden just once in 18 BFTS outs in 2015. He’s a high-performance model, and he’s fun to watch.”
Meanwhile, Cooper Tires Semper Fi was ridden just four times in 14 BFTS outs, and Stunting Like My Daddy bucked off five of his 15 opponents.
Similar to D&H Cattle Company, Berger has been able to put bull care at the front of his decisions. He knows just how much of a workload his bulls can handle and always puts their health at the top of his priority list.
“I try to get to as many events as possible without hurting my bulls,” Berger said. “When we are traveling on the road, them bulls ride in the trailer 8-10 hours a day, and we will find a very good place to rest them. We have a lot of friends along the road that have very good pens and hay. We have grown relationships with a lot of people over the years in the United States. We don’t like to have them on the trailer very long.”
It is why Berger’s bulls have been in Las Vegas since last week even though the NFR does not begin until Thursday night.
He understands the importance of getting his bulls comfortable and ready in their surroundings before stepping foot in the gold bucking chutes inside the Thomas & Mack Center.
On Wednesday morning, Berger posted a photo on his Instagram account that made it clear his boys were ready to get things going.
“These guys are ready NFR to kick off tomorrow,” Berger posted.
Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko
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