The Morning Line: Colorado Springs, 15/15 Bucking Battle

By: Slade Long May 03, 2014@ 09:45:00 AM

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. ― Here is a look at all 15 matchups for the Built Ford Tough Rumble in the Rockies 15/15 Bucking Battle.

15/15 Bucking Battle Matchups:

Stormy Wing on 96 Fire Rock:

Wing has faced Fire Rock twice – once for 90 points and once for a 5.9-second buckoff. This is a pretty good draw in this group of bulls. Fire Rock tends to go to the left and can get pretty steep at times, but he is far more rideable than some of the bulls in this round.

Fire Rock throws Brady Sims in 6.12 seconds, earning a bull score of 44.5 points, in the championship round of the PBR Passport Invitational in Tacoma, Wash.

Gage Gay on 482 Raven Flyer:

For example, this bull is notoriously rider unfriendly. He has 17 outs to his credit and has yet to be ridden. I often mention a bull’s rhythm or timing. This one has no rhythm, and that is what makes him hard to ride. He changes things up so that each jump is different from the last, which is really a key feature of a bull’s rideability or lack thereof. Gay really has his work cut out for him.

The bright side of this situation is that this is a relatively new bull, and younger bulls can be inconsistent. In this case, an inconsistent trip might involve his timing improving, which would make him easier to ride.

Emilio Resende on 850 I’m a Gangster Too:

This is a fairly honest bull with no tricks, but he bucks so hard that there is no room for rider error. If Resende can stay mistake free for 8 seconds, he can ride this bull, but even one little mistake will cost him. They’ve met before, and it went the bull’s way. I’m a Gangster Too has been ridden a few times, but never by a right-handed rider.

L.J. Jenkins on 706 Percolator:

Percolator has upped his game recently. He had some great trips when he first came on tour, but enough of them were not so great that it started to look like he would wash out almost as soon as he came in. However, since March he’s been a consistent 22-point bull, which translates to scores around 90 points when ridden. Gage Gay notched 91.5 points on him in the 15/15 Bucking Battle in Billings, Montana. On the flip side, Jenkins had him in Nampa, Idaho, the week before Gay’s ride and came down in 3.14 seconds.

Eduardo Aparecido on 122 Cooper Tires Semper Fi:

Douglas Duncan earned 88 points on this bull in Des Moines, Iowa, last week in one of just two times Semper Fi has been ridden in 11 career outs. Aparecido has done pretty well this season in terms of his riding percentage and, more importantly, his riding percentage against the top-end bulls. He’s come through when he’s faced the toughest bulls and that should keep him ranked among the top riders.

Marco Eguchi on 718 Rango:

Eguchi is probably pretty happy with his draw here. He has been over 90 points the two times he has faced Rango. His 92.25-point effort on Rango in Albuquerque, New Mexico, is one of the best rides we’re likely to see this season. Rango has allowed a career-high four qualified rides this year.

J.B. Mauney on 903 Rock River Red:

Rock River Red likes to spin to the right. He hasn’t been ridden by a left-handed rider yet, but that is subject to change. He’s a little too nice to dominate guys just because he spins away from their hand. He has good rhythm, doesn’t really have forward movement and riders should get along with him regardless of which hand they ride with. Mauney, however, did not get along with him in Nashville, Tennessee, last August. After the summer break last season, Mauney rode 68 percent of his bulls (28-for-41). This is one of the 13 bulls that got him on the ground.

Matt Triplett on 880 White Lie:

When we last saw White Lie, he was throwing J.W. Harris off in Billings. However, Harris had ridden him before. White Lie likes to go to the left and Triplett will have to get it done going away from his hand, but the bull has good timing and is very rideable. We could see an 89-91-point score here.

Valdiron de Oliveira on 904 Fire & Smoke:

This bull is just about to transform from a really good bull into an elite bull. Fire & Smoke really has everything you look for in a bucking bull. He’s got speed, power, intensity, kick and he spins to the left with a lot of whip to the outside. Oliveira is good enough to handle him, but recently Oliveira has been struggling. He appears to be completely unfocused at times. The 2011 and 2012 version of Oliveira would stand a good chance at earning 93 points here, but the Oliveira we’ve seen at the last five events doesn’t stand a chance unless this bull really has an off day.

Cody Nance on 1106 Apollo Stripes:

This is the second of three unridden bulls bucking during the 15/15 Bucking Battle. Most of the riders watch some video of the bull they have drawn, and there is not much about Apollo Stripes that looks promising. He gets a lot of air and tends to constantly move away from the rider. Nearly everyone that gets on him winds up at the end of their arm trying to catch up. Apollo Stripes weakness is that he spends a lot of time in the air. He will probably get ridden when he has a trip where he doesn’t have much forward movement.

Silvano Alves on 781 Asteroid:

We’ve seen this scenario three times before, and the odds are heavily in favor of Asteroid improving to 4-0 against the two-time World Champion. Asteroid has 24 consecutive buckoffs since Mauney rode him in 2012. If you go back to that ride, it pretty much required Mauney to stick both of his knees right behind Asteroid’s ears. Mauney kept his knees up higher than most riders do on most bulls. Mauney is great at using his knees and specifically using them to stay off a bull’s head. Alves is pretty good at it, too. The big question is does he crave these kinds of matchups the way Mauney does? While the two riders have very similar physical talent, their mental approach is clearly different. The top two or three bulls in the world often have riders defeated mentally before they ever meet physically.

Asteroid post a bull score of 47.5 points in bucking off 2011 World Champion Silvano Alves in the inaugural PBR 15/15 Bucking Battle in Sacramento, Calif.

Mike Lee on 917 Pound the Alarm:

Lee bucked off Pound the Alarm at the Calgary Stampede last summer. The only time a left-handed rider made the whistle on Pound the Alarm is when he goes to the left, and he almost never does that. This is a fast bull and is a little crooked. It can be hard for a lefty to get around the corner on him. If they do get into the spin, the further they ride him the more Pound the Alarm wants them down on his head and to the inside of the spin.

Therefore, a left-handed rider first has to get around the corner to the right and then worry about staying out of the well – of course, all this is happening pretty fast.

Advantage: bull.

Joao Ricardo Vieira on 1415 Palm Springs:

Palm Springs is likely to reach 100 career outs this season and he’ll join an elite group of bulls who have reached the milestone. He’s currently at 92 outs and has only been ridden 13 times. He can spin either way, but he’s been ridden more often by right-handed riders. There’s a little more to Palm Springs than meets the eye. He often looks fairly rider-friendly, but his record says otherwise. Vieira will have his work cut out for him here.

Guilherme Marchi on 841 Wicked:

Wicked is the third unridden bull in this weekend’s 15/15 Bucking Battle. Marchi had him in Billings and took him to the four-second mark. Wicked is 30-0 overall. But, he probably won’t keep his perfect record if he keeps drawing Marchi at every event he goes to.

Fabiano Vieira on 20U Shepherd Hills Tested:

Vieira is currently second in the world standings, but his numbers for the season suggest that he should be the odds-on favorite to win the world title this year. Injuries have been the major issue with Vieira in the past. If he can stay healthy, he will be tough to beat. Still, he isn’t the favorite in this matchup. No one would be. Shepherd Hills Tested is ridiculously hard to ride. Mauney has ridden him twice and no one else has ridden him. But, the closest anyone other than Mauney has come is when Vieira took him 7.24 seconds in Nampa two years ago.

J.B. Mauney rides Shepherd Hills Tested for 92.5 points in Round 4 of the 2012 PBR BFTS Invitational in Springfield, Mo.

Follow Slade Long on Twitter @ProBullStats.

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