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The Morning Line: Anaheim, Day 1

This is nearly the same group of bulls we saw in Sacramento, California, last week. Look for a good number of rides in the long rounds, while the short round bulls will be strong enough to shut these guys out.

Brady Sims on 691 Meathook:

Meathook is the king of money bulls. There’s absolutely nothing about him that any rider would dislike. He’s very honest, bucks hard, kicks high and doesn’t have any dirty tricks. The one caveat is that he bucks hard enough that if the rider makes a mistake he will make them pay. Sims has a great chance to pick up some round points here.

Gage Gay on 24-0 Wilbur:

This is a bull Gage Gay could ride in his sleep. Gay has obviously been in a slump, but slumps are a mental issue, and once a guy changes his mindset, the slump is over. Wilbur is 1-for-3 against right-handed riders, and he hasn’t really faced the top riders very often. He’ll be ridden more often at this level if he stays around. Although Gay hasn’t done anything this season, the odds are on his side here.

Guilherme Marchi on 6X Bobby:

Bobby is a pretty salty bull that should go to the right. This is the kind of bull Marchi can win this round on, and these two should fit each other pretty well. We saw Harve Stewart get roughed up on Bobby last week, and he won’t be a cake walk here, but the odds are with Marchi.

J.B. Mauney on BB88 Woody:

This is always one of the better long round bulls. Woody is strong, and bucks with high intensity, but he’s also got pretty good timing. The one thing that’s not on Mauney’s side here is that Woody nearly always goes to the right. He’s also the kind of bull that isn’t very forgiving of mistakes. He’s rideable, but he doesn’t just give up and let the guy win. Look for a good score here if Mauney makes it.

Reese Cates on 60X No Regrets:

Cates will be tested here. No Regrets spins to the right, but he is a handful. He’s only been ridden couple of times in 23 career outs. This bull has a good mix of everything. He jumps high, kicks hard, spins, and has some speed. He’s a cut above the nicer bulls that everyone usually rides. We saw Guilherme Marchi ride him in Oklahoma City for 87 points, and that’s the only time he’s given up a score to a right-handed rider. For a bull that spins to the right, that’s impressive.

Tanner Byrne on 1095 Cowboy Phil:

You have to love what Tanner Byrne has been doing this year. He’s been in the short round at the last three events, and that’s really what it takes to get to the top of the standings. You have to get to a lot of short rounds, and convert those opportunities into scores. With the points system change, more attention is being paid to who places in the long rounds, because only the guys who place earn points. But, short rounds are really the most important rounds for a few different reasons. Short rounds pay round points just like the long rounds, but they are far easier to win. Almost everyone who stays on wins points. Staying on in the short round also leads to placing high in the average, and the average pays four times the points that rounds do.

This bull hasn’t been ridden in the past 11 months. L.J. Jenkins rode him for 87.75 points and second in the round in Fresno, California, last year. Byrne should do what we’ve seen him do this season so far — stay on. He’s been one of the most reliable riders on tour this year.

Cooper Davis on 904 Fire & Smoke:

We haven’t seen Davis on tour since Laughlin, Nevada, last fall, but you should expect this guy to be a regular on tour very soon. At the Touring Pro level he really stands out, and he rides well enough to be here. He’s got both a good and a bad draw tonight — Fire & Smoke is typically a short round bull, and will outclass most of the bulls in this round, but, while left-handed riders have had their way with him at times, he hasn’t given up a ride to a right-handed rider yet. Davis had him in Nashville last season and came down halfway to the whistle. This bull generates a lot of centrifugal force, and Davis will have to ride mistake free here.

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