By: Slade Long
Daylon Swearingen on B34 Yo Adrian!
This bull isn’t as famous and well known as some of the other bulls in this round. He has a strong record at 24-1 overall, but he may be a great fit for Swearingen. When we’ve seen this bull in the past, he’s been to the left with some flash, and decent enough timing. Swearingen is capable of taking bulls like this down for huge scores.
Brennon Eldred on 511T Stretch:
This is a matchup that didn’t go the rider’s way the first time. These two met at the World Finals in 2017 and the bull won handily there. That said, Stretch is a fantastic draw for a right-handed rider, and Eldred is probably happy to have him here. In his younger days Stretch was mostly about speed, and was one of the quickest bulls around. He’s matured into a solid all-around talent. He still has good speed, but he has other tools to go with it. He’s been a solid 22-point bull for the past year and a half, and he should spin into Eldred’s hand here.
J.B. Mauney on 169 Sky Harbor:
This bull has made his living the old school way – by yanking rider arms enough to rattle them loose. He does this with a lot of up-and-down and a lot of kick. He’s not a finesse type bull – he brings the brawn to every matchup. The thing is, Mauney is already a legend in this sport mostly because his entire career has been about taking on bulls like this, man to man, and sending them home crying. Mauney seems to take it personally when bulls try to snatch him around. That attitude and Mauney being healthy for the first time in a long time make this matchup one to watch.
Cooper Davis on 404 Quick Fire:
Kaique Pacheco rode this bull in Little Rock early this year. If the bull has the same trip here, Davis should coast to an easy score. But, Quick Fire can be tougher to ride than he showed with Pacheco, and if he has that kind of day, Davis will have his hands full. Despite the messed up schedule this year, Davis has ridden well in 2020, and is one of the strongest riders coming in to this event.
Matt Triplett on E5 Big Black Cat:
Triplett is 1-for-2 against this bull over the past couple of years, and he’s probably pretty happy with this draw. Big Black Cat isn’t ridden that often, but he’s fairly honest and he rewards hustle and try from a rider. Stetson Wright made an 88.25-point ride on him during the Monster Energy Team Challenge in Las Vegas.
Ezekiel Mitchell on 247 Red Dawn:
Veteran bull here who has been a fixture at PBR events since 2016. Red Dawn can be the nicest-to-ride bull in the pen, until he isn’t. He posted some of the most impressive trips of his career during the run of events in Las Vegas this summer. Mitchell had him once last year and didn’t get the job done, but this is a good draw in general for any rider.
Rafael Henrique dos Santos on 2731 South Texas Gangster:
The bull should be a huge favorite here, but Santos has a chance. South Texas Gangster is pretty tough on every rider. He threw Jess Lockwood earlier this year, and he has buckoffs against just about every top rider in the business. He does have a weakness, and it’s right-handed riders. He’s faced a lot of lefties this year, but he was ridden by Roscoe Jarboe in Las Vegas, and two other right handers nearly got him rode early in the season. Santos being a righty may give him a chance here.
Jose Vitor Leme on S537 Sniper:
Sniper is likely to go away from Leme’s hand, but considering what Leme has done so far in 2020, this should be a walk in the park for him. This bull has one of the lower difficulty ratings in the round, and he’s definitely drawn the toughest rider in the round.
Lucas Divino on 51 Safety Meeting:
Divino might be better off if he were left-handed for this matchup, but no one will complain about having this bull. Whether you are a stock contractor or a bull rider, you could not hope to get a classier little bull than this one. Safety Meeting has the talent, and he puts it out there every time. He’s given up five qualified rides in his career, three of those for 90-plus points. Great draw, although he is almost sure to go away from Divino’s hand here. Divino can’t afford a mistake, because this is not a very forgiving bull.
Bonus Match – Jose Vitor Leme on 513 Good Night Robicheaux:
Although Leme has had the Midas touch this year, he will not have an easy time here. Robicheaux is 35-0 in his career, and Leme is one of the victims – they met in April of this year. This bull has a little bit of everything that riders hate. He can lurch forward, he can have horrible timing, he’s unpredictable, and he can yank anyone’s arm off. Riding this bull to the whistle will be an ugly fight the whole way. Leme is certainly capable of whipping up on any bull, but this one will a challenge.
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