By: Kristian Limas
December 04, 2016
HIDALGO, Texas – Following the conclusion of this weekend’s Real Time Pain Relief Velocity Tour event, Jorge Valdiviezo said his goodbyes to fellow Mexican bull rider Juan Carlos Contreras as he made his way out of State Farm Arena.
Contreras thanked Valdiviezo for hanging out over the weekend and told him he hoped Valdiviezo’s broken ankle could heal up soon. More importantly, Contreras made sure he got Valdiviezo’s phone number and compared their upcoming schedules.
Contreras wanted to make sure he kept up with his friend as he begins to make his own push in the Real Time Pain Relief Velocity Tour, and Valdiviezo was more than happy to help him in any way he can.
“Juan Carlos is an old friend from Mexico and he rides with PBR Mexico. He’s trying to ride here now with the PBR this season,” Valdiviezo said. “That’s what I want to see. It’s an inspiration to the other bull riders in Mexico to come here and try.”
They plan to train together in the next few weeks, as well as travel together to a few bull riding events. Valdiviezo hopes Contreras will join him next weekend at the RVT event in Biloxi, Mississippi.
Contreras didn’t record a qualified ride in Hidalgo, but Valdiviezo was perfect through the first two rounds until he was forced to pull out of the championship round because of his on-going ankle injury.
Despite the disappointing end, Valdiviezo was happy to ride with Contreras and help him get acclimated to the tour.
Valdiviezo was also happy to ride in front of a friendly crowd at State Farm Arena, which sits just a stone’s throw away from the Mexican border. He spent the week visiting local children at the Edinburg Children’s Hospital, as well as several schools in the area.
The kids were absolutely fascinated meeting a real bull rider and were even happier to find out that, like many of them, Valdiviezo spoke their native tongue. Naturally, it led to an extensive question and answer session.
“We went to the children’s hospital and I got to talk to the kids and help them feel strong because they’re sick and we went there to support them,” Valdiviezo said. “We went to a school too and all the kids there were happy because the other bull rider I went with spoke English, but when I started speaking Spanish they got so happy.
“All the kids had questions like, ‘How does it feel to ride a bull? How dangerous is it?’”
He received several large roars in the arena, as well as the majority of the Latino crowd rose to their feet when the distinct trumpets of Vincente Fernandez’s classic “El Rey” introduced Valdiviezo in the bucking chutes.
Though Valdiviezo hails from La Mision, Mexico, which is in the Baja region closer to California, he currently resides four hours north of Hidalgo in San Antonio and felt right at home in South Texas.
“A lot of people here are Latino, so it felt great because when I ride all the people support me and share this with me. That definitely feels great.”
His only regret was not getting a chance to close out the weekend and missing out at a shot at the event win in Hidalgo. Despite that, he still counted it as a successful weekend.
“It was a good weekend for me,” Valdiviezo said. “I’m sad I didn’t get to ride in the short go because of my injury, but it was still a good weekend.”
Valdiviezo was more worried about aggravating his injury, but he was confident some rest will help him get back on track.
“I feel good, just sore, and I have an old injury on my ankle. It’s been all season. Last weekend, I rode at an open bull riding and a bull stepped on me again and I’ve been sore since,” Valdiviezo said. “But I’m happy with my job this weekend, I rode two bulls, so I’m just going to go back home and get some rest and some rehabilitation.”
It was not a storybook ending for Valdiviezo in South Texas, but he acknowledged that it’s a long season with plenty of work still left to do. For his part, he hopes the weekend spent with some of his friends will help not only their efforts, but his as well.
“It’s good because you can split everything. Your training, your expenses, your routines and traveling with Mexican people and your friends is very important,” Valdiviezo said. “They support you when you lose your focus and they just support you a lot.”
He knows that he is just the tip of the spear when it comes to Mexican bull riders, and he knows there are still plenty waiting to come over when given the chance.
“It’s important for the sport in Mexico because we have a lot of talent there and there are a lot of good bull riders there,” Valdiviezo said. “These guys definitely ride good, and I’m so happy for them because they have dreams too. That makes me happy.”
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