By: Mandi McCary
RAPID CITY, S.D. – As the dust settled inside of Rushmore Plaza Civic Center and Saturday night rolled to a close, Taylor Toves (Stephenville, Texas) punched his ticket to the 2019 PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Unleash The Beast World Finals Nov. 6-10 after winning the Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT) Rapid City Rumble.
Starting the night at No. 35 in the world standings, Toves was one of a handful of riders on the “bubble” vying for their shot to qualify for the biggest event of the year in Las Vegas. No stranger to the heated competition the Rapid City event brings, Toves finished second at the 2018 event.
In Round 1 of the night Toves covered Fat Boy (Rafter B Bucking Bulls) for a round-winning 88 points. Later in the championship round, Toves was paired with Redneck (Harrison/Swearingen/Berger) for another 88-point ride score.
The win earned him 220 world points to push the determined young Texan to the No. 26 spot in the world standings and clear the path to compete at the ultimate competition in the sport. For his efforts in South Dakota, Toves collected a paycheck for $7,300.
Brazilian rider Alisson De Souza (Taubate, Brazil) moved up one spot in the world standings from No. 16 to No. 15 with his second-place finish at the last regular-season PWVT event of 2019. After being awarded a re-ride in Round 1, he rocketed out of the chutes aboard Crazy Days (Dakota Rodeo/ Chad Berger/ Clay Struve/ Heald Pro Bulls) to secure his place in the championship round with an 85.5-point ride. He rode to the runner-up finish compliments of his 87-point ride aboard Kmag YoYo (Rawson/Obernage/ Daisy’s Bucking Bulls). De Souza collected 90 world points and a check for $4,400.
As the heated world title race continued to unfold, current world leader Jose Vitor Leme (Ribas do Rio Pardo, Brazil) furthered his hold on the No. 1 spot with his third-place finish. Leme made the 8 aboard Kickstart My Heart (Richardson Land & Cattle Co) for 87.5 in Round 1 and then later had the crowd on its feet as he conquered Cactus Jack (Richardson Land & Cattle Co) in the final round for 84.5 points. For his efforts Leme collected a paycheck for $3,000.
The 2-for-2 night also earned the 2017 PBR Rookie of the Year 80 world points to extend his lead over world No. 2 Jess Lockwood (Volborg, Montana) by 496.66 points. Lockwood did not compete in Rapid City.
Lockwood’s absence positioned an opportunity for world No. 3 Chase Outlaw (Hamburg, Arkansas) to make up ground and close the gap between the two. Despite a solid 84-point ride aboard Grey Ghost (GT Bucking Bulls) in Round 1, Outlaw was bested by River Roach (GT Bucking Bulls) in the championship round after just 6.14 seconds. His efforts in the Badlands didn’t garner the gritty cowboy any added world points.
2018 Rapid City Rumble champion Rubens Barbosa (Iaciara, Brazil) finished fourth, backed by an 86-point effort on Roll of the Dice (Barrett Bucking Stock) in the opening round. After an 85-point trip on Big John (D4 Cattle Co./ Sho-Me Rodeo) he collected $1,550 and 20 world points, moving him to No. 32 in the standings.
Rounding out the Top 5 was three-time Indian National Finals Rodeo champion (2010, 2012 & 2013) Dakota Louis (Browning, Montana). Louis recorded an impressive 85-point ride in the opening round aboard War Whoop (Dakota Rodeo/Chad Berger/Clay Struve), and his matchup against Dark Knight (Hudgins/ Frenzel) in the championship round made the whistle and received an identical 85-point score. The Native rider collected $840 and 15 world points for his efforts.
Just as heated as the world title race was the first night of competition for the 2020 Million Dollar Bull Team Challenge.
Earning a combined score of 278.63 points courtesy of trips recorded by Yoga Pants, Fat Boy and Wired Up, Rafter B Bucking Bulls won the first stop of the season, collecting a paycheck for $25,000.
Harrison/ Swearingen/Berger finished second to earn $13,000, while Rawson/ Obernagel/Daisy’s Bucking Bulls was third collecting $10,000.
Also earning a check was fourth-place Richardson Land & Cattle, earning $7,000, and fifth-place Hudgins/Frenzel, collecting $5,000.
The PWVT regular-season may have come to an end in Rapid City but the season will culminate next week with the Velocity Tour Finals at South Point Arena in Las Vegas Nov. 2-3, leading into the PBR’s 2019 World Finals at T-Mobile Arena. The winner of the PWVT Finals, the second- and third-place finishers, the top international performer and the 2019 PWVT Tour Champion will each qualify to compete at the PBR World Finals and a chance to be the 2019 PBR World Finals Event Champion.
Fans can relive all the action from the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour’s Rapid City Rumble on Sunday, October 28 at 8 a.m. ET on-demand at RidePass.com or via the mobile app.
Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour Event Results
Rapid City Rumble – Rushmore Plaza Civic Center – Rapid City, South Dakota
Name, Round 1-Round 2-Event Aggregate-Event Points
1. Taylor Toves, 88-88-176.00-220 Points.
2. Alisson De Souza, 85.5-87-172.50-90 Points.
3. Jose Vitor Leme, 87.5-84.5-172.00-80 Points.
4. Rubens Barbosa, 86-85-171.00-20 Points.
5. Dakota Louis, 85-85-170.00-15 Points.
6. Cody Casper, 83.5-86-169.50-7.5 Points.
(tie). Andrew Alvidrez, 86-83.5-169.50-7.5 Points.
8. Cody Teel, 83.5-85.5-169.00
9. Alan de Souza, 83-83.5-166.50
10. Gage Gay, 86.5-0-86.50-10 Points.
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