By: Kacie Albert
SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – For the first time in league history, PBR’s (Professional Bull Riders) fastest growing series, the Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour, will buck into Springfield, Massachusetts, welcoming fans to the MassMutual Center Aug. 13-14 for the PBR Springfield Invitational.
For two nights only, some of the best bull riders in the world will battle the sport’s rankest bovine athletes in the ultimate showdown of man vs. beast in one of the most exciting live sporting events to witness.
The PBR Springfield Invitational will tentatively mark the first major ticketed, touring event hosted at full capacity inside MassMutual Center since the onset of the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.
While the league’s expansion series has never before stopped in Springfield, the City of Firsts is no stranger to PBR action, having welcomed the developmental Touring Pro Division in both 2007 and 2013. After Tony Mendes (Fruita, Colorado) won the inaugural event in 2007, Gage Gay (Staley, North Carolina) captured the title in PBR’s most recent trip to Springfield in 2013.
Massachusetts is also home to one of the fan favorite PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour events, with Worcester having welcomed the series the past six seasons. Those Bay State event victors are: Tye Chandler (2020 – Celina, Texas); Daniel Tinsman (2019 – Farmland, Indiana); Juan Carlos Contreras (2018; Huichapan, Mexico), Emilio Resende (2017; Santa Helena, Brazil), Winston Lopez (2016; Bandera, Texas), and Austin Meier (2015; Kinta, Oklahoma).
The Springfield tour stop will tentatively mark the 15th Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour event of the year, with the series first stopping in cities including Greenville, South Carolina; Lexington, Kentucky; Pensacola, Florida and Grand Forks, North Dakota.
Thus far in 2021, the race for the 2021 PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour Championship is off to a fierce start; the Top 3 riders in the series standings are separated by a mere 12 points.
Austin Richardson (Stephenville, Texas) currently holds the No. 1 rank after winning one PWVT event and registering two additional Top-10 efforts across four events. The 21-year-old Texan leads No. 2 Paulo Ferreira Lima (Bezerros, Brazil) by a slim 8.67 points, and No. 3 Michael Lane (Tazewell, Virginia) by 11.5 points.
The bull riding action for the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour’s Springfield Invitational begins at 8:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, August 13, and at 7:00 p.m. EDT on Saturday, August 14 at MassMutual Center.
On Friday night, all 40 competing riders will attempt one bull each in Round 1. The same 40 riders will then return for Round 2 on Saturday evening. Following Round 2, the Top 10 will then advance to the championship round where they will attempt one final bull, all in an effort to be crowned the event champion.
Tickets for the event are on sale now, and start at $15, taxes and fees not included. Fans are encouraged to purchase their tickets early, with all price levels increasing $5 on event day. Tickets can be purchased online at MassMutualCenter.com or PBR.com, or by calling PBR Customer Service at 1-800-732-1727.
For an enhanced PBR experience, fans can also purchase PBR Elite Experience Add On for $50, which will provide a behind-the-chutes look into the toughest sport on dirt.
The Elite Experience Add On, available on both Aug. 13-14, includes a pre-event question and answer session with PBR stars, commemorative lanyard and post-event photo opportunity in the arena. For more information, contact PBR Direct at 800-732-1727.
Throughout the 2021 season, PBR will continue to commit to providing a safe environment for fans, athletes, employees, and crew by working with its venue partners to implement health and safety protocols for live events while following health guidance from local and state officials.
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