Morning Line – New York – Round 2:
Last week in Chicago’s second round, the riders dominated and the round was pretty tough. It took 87.25 points to place, and quite a few guys made good rides, but didn’t earn any round points. Tonight’s round won’t be like that. Judging from the matchups, high scoring rides will be at a premium. Just like in any other sport the individual matchups mean a lot. We had a lot of matchups last week where a quality bull was involved, but the rider was still favored. Tonight, many of the higher scoring bulls have matchups that look better for them.
Silvano Alves on RMEF Big Bull:
With the new points system, it’s very easy for us to see which bulls produce the most round points. After the first two events of the season, this bull is in the lead on that list. He’s produced 130 round points. He gave up 100 to Valdiron de Oliveira in Chicago, and 30 to Guilherme Marchi in Baltimore. Marchi rode him again in Chicago, but didn’t place in the round. RMEF Big Bull is also most vulnerable against right-handed riders. Here he’ll be facing a guy who decided to give up bucking off some time ago. This is a very favorable matchup for Alves.
Billy Robinson on 27 Gentleman Jim:
This bull has just one Touring Pro division out on his record, and it resulted in a qualified long round ride and ultimately an event win in Springfield, Missouri, back in November. Robinson won second in last night’s round, and a second score would be big for him here.
Cody Nance on 503 Imagine That:
This is one of the higher-rated bulls in tonight’s round, and he’s pretty much only been ridden when he faces the best riders. We last saw him on tour in Laughlin, Nevada, last fall, and he wasn’t great there. It was one of his weaker trips, but a lot of bulls had off days in Laughlin if you remember. There is some potential here for a placing score, but this may not be an easy win for Nance.
Tyler Pankewitz on 700 Fire Bender:
Josh Faircloth had this bull last night, and came down, but Faircloth rode him for 86 points just last week. Pankewitz has been on tour before — back in 2008. He’s been a better rider since then, competing mostly in Canada. He’d like to carry that over to this level, where the pay is significantly higher.
Gage Gay on 79 Jo Jo:
This is a great draw for any right-handed rider in this round, and he may be the best bull out tonight. JW Harris won a round on him at the World Finals with an 88.75-point ride. That kind of score will do well tonight. Gay hasn’t had a great start this season, but he may turn it around tonight.
JB Mauney on 253 Rough ‘em Up Tuck:
This is a new bull that made his debut in Baltimore. Silvano Alves rode him in the second round there, and Luis Blanco rode him in the second round in Chicago. It’s a safe bet that Mauney will put up a score here — this bull is overmatched. But, this is exactly the kind of situation that has cost Mauney in two of the last three seasons. Alves rarely slips on a bull he’s supposed to ride. Mauney has let some get away, and he’s made it up when he’s had the top- end bulls. That’s really the mental game at work. Mauney rises to the big occasions because he’s wired that way. The better the bull bucks, the better he rides. The problem with the easier bulls is that they are also easy to fall off of, and they can require just as much focus as the best ones.
Kasey Hayes on 84 Megaton:
We last saw this bull way back in April of last year, and he had a pretty mediocre trip with Guilherme Marchi. He’s normally a pretty good draw, and a bull that guys can be 86-88 points on. Megaton doesn’t jump really high, he doesn’t spend much time in the air, and he doesn’t kick straight up over his head. What he does do, is spin like the Tasmanian Devil. He can have a lot of speed, and the combination of speed an spin usually means a bull that can score well, and one that riders can deal with.
Valdiron de Oliveira on 978 Little Red Jacket:
These two have met before. Back in 2013, Oliveira was 85.5 points on Little Red Jacket in Fayetteville, North Carolina. This is a bull that has only been ridden by right-handed riders. Oliveira came down right at the whistle last night, and he’ll need this bull to have a great day here to place in the round. But what he needs the most is to string some rides together and reclaim the consistency he had before last season. Oliveira has been one of the best riders we’ve ever seen in the PBR, but at times recently he’s been the opposite.
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