By: Justin Felisko
SACRAMENTO, Calif. – Ryan Dirteater announced last week that he will be retiring following the 2020 PBR World Finals, and the Cherokee Kid made it clear he still has plenty of unfinished business before then.
One of the items remaining on his to-do list can only be accomplished this coming weekend at the Express Ranches Invitational in Oklahoma City. Dirteater is the reigning event champion, and he aspires to win the OKC event for a PBR-record third consecutive time.
“It would be really special to win it three times,” Dirteater said. “It really would be. It is there. All I have to do is stay on my bulls. That is key in this sport.”
Dirteater is 16-for-34 (47.06%) in 10 premier series events in Oklahoma City, and he heads into Round 1 Friday night with six consecutive rides.
Round 1 airs exclusively on RidePass beginning at 8:45 p.m. ET.
The No. 15-ranked bull rider in the world standings missed this past weekend’s Wrangler Long Live Cowboys Classic in Sacramento, California, with a broken bone in his left ankle.
Jason Bennett is the only other rider to win earn two consecutive victories in Oklahoma City (2000-2001). Dirteater and Bennett are also the only riders with multiple wins in Oklahoma City.
Below is a look back at the Top 5 rides of Dirteater’s career in Oklahoma City.
93.25 points on SweetPro’s Bruiser (2018)
Dirteater earned his first career win in Oklahoma City with the help of a legendary bovine dance partner. The Hulbert, Oklahoma, native rode three-time World Champion Bull SweetPro’s Bruiser for a career-high 93.25 points two years ago.
“This state loves it,” Dirteater said. “Here in Oklahoma, it is a Western state. Everybody loves bull riding and the rodeo. The fans that are here are outstanding. This is just a great one to win.”
91 points on Big Black (2019)
Dirteater put his name among the growing list of riders that have won a premier series event aboard Big Black when he made it back-to-back victories in Oklahoma City last year by riding the K-Bar-C Bucking Bulls stud for 91 points.
“That was awesome,” Kenny McElroy said at the time. “That is what this sport is about. You bring the world’s best bulls here, and when you bring bulls they can be over 90 on, that is my goal, too. Big Black speaks for himself. Ryan had to hustle his tail off. That was no easy bull ride. He was throwing some power at him. He is just an awesome kid. I love Dirt to death, and I couldn’t be more happy for him.”
90.75 points on Too Sexy (2012)
Dirteater came up just short of the event win in 2012. He went 3-for-5 and finished second in Oklahoma City, while event winner Valdiron de Oliveira was 4-for-5. Dirteater’s ride on Too Sexy was also the second-highest of the event behind two-time World Champion J.B. Mauney’s 92.25-point ride on Smackdown.
90.75 points on Black Pearl (2009)
Dirteater earned the first 90-point ride of his career when he rode Black Pearl for 90.75 points. It was sweet revenge for Dirteater after Black Pearl had previously bucked him off in 7 seconds a few months earlier at Dirteater’s first PBR World Finals (2008).
89.75 points on Stiffler (2009)
Dirteater won two of the first three rounds of competition at the 2009 Oklahoma City event. He first won Round 2 with his ride on Black Pearl before following that up with his 89.75-point ride on Stiffler to tie with Chris Shivers (89.75 points on Motown) for the Round 3 win. Chance bucked Dirteater off in 6.5 seconds in the championship round.
Follow Justin Felisko on Twitter @jfelisko
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