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The Morning Line, Billings, Day 1

Billings Round 1:

We’ll see a contingent of Canadian bulls here from several different stock contractors. There aren’t very many events where Canadian bulls get to come, but we usually do see some in Billings, Montana, each year. This year, Canadian bulls are likely to play a role in who wins here. The PBR and rodeo in general are pretty big north of the border, and there are a lot of seasoned bulls there. More importantly, there are a lot of Canadian bulls that riders get along with. We’ve seen some very rank bulls come out of Canada through the years, but there are also many bulls there that regularly carry guys to the pay window. They’ll be good draws this weekend and will help some of these riders get to the short round.

Robson Aragao on 344-9 Crack The Whip:

This is the points bull of the year so far. He’s carried guys to more round points than any other bull this year, and in just four qualified rides. The bad news for Aragao is that Crack the Whip pretty much only helps left-handed guys earn points. It’s been over a year since he’s given up a ride to a right-handed rider. This is not an easy bull to ride by any means. He can be good to ride once he’s fully into a spin, but he throws a lot of guys before they get that far. He will cover a lot of ground in the first few jumps, and he has a quick corner.

Joao Ricardo Vieira on 081 Nearly Departed:

This is one of the Canadian bulls, and he doesn’t have a long history. He hasn’t given up a qualified ride that we have on record, and the video we have on him shows why. He’s a little wild and unpredictable, and can go either way. Vieira will be a big test for him, and if he goes left here he’ll probably get ridden.

Mason Lowe on 281 Red Mile:

This bull’s record is very similar to Vieira’s bull. He hasn’t been around all that long, he doesn’t give up qualified rides, and he’s probably going to get thoroughly tested here. Lowe is coming off a second place finish in Nampa, Idaho, last week, and he looked like a guy who really belongs at this level of competition. Red Mile is probably going to go to the right, into Lowe’s hand. He’s a pretty salty bull — he got the best of Tanner Byrne last month at a PBR Canada event — but he should be a good fit for Lowe.

Shane Proctor on 0114 Tahonta’s Magic:

We saw Ben Jones make a great ride on this bull in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. He went to the right with Ben, and he’s been much better to right-handed riders in his career. He’s got a lot of up and down, and he got the best of Kaique Pacheco in Nampa last week. He should be a worthy adversary for Proctor, and this could turn into a score that will place in the round.

Ryan Dirteater on 36 Smoke Show:

Smoke Show will be making his BFTS debut here, but he’s no rookie. He’s been around the PBR Canada circuit for a few years, and he gives up some rides from time to time. He should be around to the right, but he’s got good timing which makes him nicer to ride no matter which way he goes. When this bull spins to the right, he tends to keep his head pretty level and cocked to the right which takes some power and speed away from him. The rankest bulls often use the weight of their head to gain some momentum or drop, and bulls that keep their head high or level just don’t have as much power. We see that with Percolator — a really good bull that does get ridden a lot. Most bulls that share this trait will get ridden often at this level, and Dirteater will probably win this match.

Mike Lee on 09 Legal Tender:

This is the bull that Silvano Alves injured his hip on last week. He went to the right, and this one does know how to keep his head going to gain momentum. He had a shaky start, but once he got going to the right, he turned on the gas. If he has the same trip here, Lee will have his hands full, but could get a round win if he can keep up.

Stormy Wing on 905 Proper Ripped:

This is another Canadian bull with some experience. He’s a short round bull at many PBR Canada events, and he’s been ridden quite a few times. He should go to the left, and he should fit Wing pretty well. If he has a good day, he will be enough bull to place in the round on, possibly pretty high.

Matt Triplett on 008 Heaven’s Basement:

Triplett is coming back here and he’s looking to make up ground in the world standings. He will have a chance to do it here, but he’ll have to do it on a bull that is probably going away from his hand. Heaven’s Basement has given up three rides in 13 career outs, all to left- handed riders. What Triplett has going for him is that he’s pretty good on bulls that go away from his hand.

Renato Nunes on 10728/0 Shaft:

Shaft is unridden in 22 career outs, and for good reason. He may be the rankest bull in this round. He can be good enough to be a short-round bull, and we’ve seen him in short rounds several times. He likes to go to the left, and he’s the kind of bull Nunes can look really good on if he can get the job done.

Reese Cates on 40 Good Cop:

This bull doesn’t have a lot of history, and he’s only been ridden once, but Cates had him in Sioux Falls and took him 7.5 seconds. He should have a good feel for what this bull is about, and he’s likely to get the whistle this time.

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