(Editor's note: PBR release)
NAMPA, Idaho – With only the Billings event next weekend remaining before the PBR World Finals in Fort Worth, Texas, on May 13-22, world leader Joao Ricardo Vieira (Itatinga, Brazil) lost ground in Nampa Saturday night at the PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational, presented by Cooper Tires, in front of a sold-out crowd.
But Montana's Matt Triplett climbed slightly in the world standings further securing his stability to reach the PBR World Finals splitting 12th place with a scored of 86.5. Triplett, who shared the spot with Manoelito de Souza Junior, now sits 28th overall entering next week's regular season finale in Billings.
Browning's Dakota Louis is 39th and did not compete in Nampa. Only the top 35 qualify for next month's finals.
After a rocky weekend, going 1-for-3, only riding his Round 2 bull Skeeter Peter (Dakota Rodeo/ Mark Baker/ Clay Struve/ Chad Berger), Vieira now sits 88.84 points ahead of Swearingen in the world title race.
Swearingen, who also had a bumpy go in Nampa, went 1-for-3. He fell outside the Top 5 of the event, finishing in a tie for tenth place with reigning PBR Rookie of the Year Eli Vastbinder (Statesville, North Carolina).
World No. 3 Pacheco capitalized on both Vieira and Swearingen’s less-than-ideal weekends as he surged ahead, collecting a third-place finish and 81 world points to narrow the gap between himself and the No. 1 spot to 120.5 points.
Ramon de Lima (Rio Branco, Brazil), who began the weekend at No. 31 in the world standings, rocketed 13 spots to the No. 18 position after winning the
It was the 31-year-old Brazilian’s first Unleash The Beast (UTB) premier series win since winning in Little Rock, Arkansas, in March 2020, and the advance in the standings could not have come at a better time in the season for Lima.
In one of the most electric world title races that fans have witnessed in years, the 2022 PBR Unleash The Beast season heads towards a thrilling finish with just one event remaining in the regular season before the May 13 start of the PBR World Finals in Fort Worth, Texas.
Splitting third place in Friday’s Round 1 with No. 2 man in the world Daylon Swearingen (Piffard, New York), Lima went 3-for-3 as he finished out the weekend and won the event.
As Saturday began, Lima was paired with WSM’s Nasty Wishes (WSM Auctioneers/ Clay Struve/ Dakota Rodeo/ Chad Berger) in Round 2 for a resounding 87.5 points, moving him into the championship round.
Selecting Top Shelf (P. Ro Ranch/ OK Corralis/ Gordon/ D&H Cattle) as his opponent for the weekend’s championship round, Lima sat third on the leaderboard as the final round began.
Lima launched out of the chutes and battled hard as he knew his fate if he bucked off.
His 89.75-point score didn’t immediately secure the win as the Idaho crowd awaited rides from 2018 PBR World Champion Kaique Pacheco (Itatiba, Brazil) and Clayton Sellars (Fruitland Park, Florida), who was leading the event aggregate at that point in the night.
To Lima’s advantage, his fellow riders did not conquer their bovine opponents, clinching the win for him.
“I’m working hard for this,” said Lima about his win and advancing in the world standings. “I want to thank all of the fans here. It for sure helped and made the victory more fun to be here with a full house.”
The determined veteran earned 138 world points and $46,435 over the two-day weekend.
The only other man to match Lima’s flawless 3-for-3 weekend was Colorado’s Colten Fritzlan (Rifle, Colorado), finishing in second place and earning 80.5 world points.
Matched with Slingshot (Less Than 8 Cattle Co.), Fritzlan had the Idaho crowd at full volume in Saturday’s opening round. Besting his bovine opponent for 70.75 points, he punched his ticket into the championship round courtesy of being within the Top 10 in Round 1.
Fritzlan cemented his runner-up position after riding Buckin’ for Cash (Paradigm Bull Company) for 85.75 points in the championship round.
Having begun the weekend in the No. 196 spot in the world standings, Fritzlan leaves Nampa having launched to No. 54, setting his sights on catapulting into the Top 35 before the season ends. The 22-year-old cowboy also earned $21,201.
After winning Round 1 on Friday night, Pacheco began Saturday night paired with Black & Blue (OK Corralis/ Gordon/ D&H Cattle Co) for a solid 88.25-point score.
The former world champion then chose Pookie Holler (Dakota Rodeo/ Brian & Ashley Pinta/ Clay Struve/ Chad Berger) for the final round but was dispatched quickly in 5.22 seconds, earning the powerful bovine an impressive 46.5-point score and the YETI “Built for The Wild” Bull of the Event title.
In addition to the much-needed world points, Pacheco collected $14,480 for his third-place finish.
Paired with Surprise Package (Clay Struve/ Dakota Rodeo/ Chad Berger) in Round 2, Lucas Divino (Nova Crixas, Brazil) was determined to punch his ticket into Nampa’s championship round.
Earning a score of 88 points, he went into the final round strong but was no match for Taking Chances (Frihauf Cattle Co.), hitting the dirt in a mere 2.69 seconds.
Despite the disappointing finale, Divino finished in fourth place overall for the weekend, collecting 51 world points to move from No. 27 in the world standings to No. 24.
2019 PBR Rookie of the Year Dalton Kasel (Muleshoe, Texas) rounded out the Top 5 of the weekend with a 1-for-3 performance courtesy of a massive 91.5-point score in Round 2.
The energetic young Texan clinched the Round 2 win aboard Arkansas (D&H Cattle Company) as fans cheered.
In the championship round, his selection of Liston (P. Ro Ranch/ Lone Star/ Adams/ D&H Cattle) had the crowd cheering again, but he came crashing down after a short 2.62 seconds.
Despite the short-round buckoff, Kasel earned 46 world points to move up one spot in the world standings from No. 8 to No. 7.
The 2022 PBR UTB regular season concludes next week in Billings, Montana as the PBR Cooper Tires Invitational, presented by Ariat, takes over MetraPark on Friday, April 29 at 7:45 p.m. MDT, Saturday, April 30 at 6:45 p.m. MDT and Sunday, May 1 at 1:45 p.m. MDT.
Elsewhere in the PBR, as action for the penultimate regular-season PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour event wound to a close Saturday evening in Wichita, Kansas, Canadian young gun Griffin Smeltzer (Claresholm, Alberta, Canada) reached a crucial career milestone. Delivering a flawless 2-for-2 effort inside INTRUST Bank Arena, Smeltzer earned his first victory on the organization’s expansion series, winning the PBR Nexgrill Invitational.
Smeltzer was sensational as the event got underway in Round 1. Drawing Jingle and Go (JQH Bucking Bulls – Skip & Elaine Jones), the 22-year-old reached the requisite 8 for 86 points.
Advancing to the championship round fifth on the event leaderboard, Smeltzer next readied to climb aboard Axel Surgeon (Halpain Bucking Bulls). In perfect timing with his animal athlete counterpart, Smeltzer brought the raucous crowd to its feet as he covered Axel Surgeon for a championship round-best 86.5 points to clinch the event victory.
For his efforts, Smeltzer earned a crucial 38 world points, catapulting him 13 positions in the world standings from No. 64 to No. 51.
Smeltzer, who is seeking his first berth to the PBR World Finals when they debut inside Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, Texas, May 13-22, is now within 40 points of the Top 35 threshold to qualify for the sport’s most prestigious event.
PBR Unleash The Beast - PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational, presented by Cooper Tires
Ford Idaho Center -Nampa, Idaho
Event Leaders (Round 1-Round 1-Round 2-Round 3-Event Aggregate-Event Points)
1. Ramon de Lima, 87-87.5-89.75-264.25-138 Points.
2. Colten Fritzlan, 85-70.75-85.75-241.50-80.5 Points.
3. Kaique Pacheco, 88.25-88.25-0-176.50-81 Points.
4. Lucas Divino, 86-88-0-174.00-51 Points.
5. Dalton Kasel, 0-91.5-0-91.50-46 Points.
6. João Henrique Lucas, 0-88.5-0-88.50-30 Points.
7. Clayton Sellars, 88-0-0-88.00-24 Points.
8. Derek Kolbaba, 0-87.75-0-87.75-20 Points.
9. João Ricardo Vieira, 0-87.5-0-87.50-17.5 Points.
10. Daylon Swearingen, 87-0-0-87.00-18 Points.
(tie). Eli Vastbinder, 0-87-0-87.00-13.5 Points.
12. Manoelito de Souza Junior, 86.5-0-0-86.50-15 Points.
(tie). Matt Triplett, 0-86.5-0-86.50-11 Points.
14. Chase Dougherty, 0-86-0-86.00-10 Points.
15. Jose Vitor Leme, 0-85.25-0-85.25-1 Points.
16. Claudio Montanha Jr., 85-0-0-85.00-12.5 Points.
17. Boudreaux Campbell, 0-83.75-0-83.75-8 Points.
18. Brady Fielder, 82-0-0-82.00-11 Points.
19. Andrew Alvidrez, 0-80.75-0-80.75-8 Points.
Luciano De Castro, 0-0-0-0.00
Dener Barbosa, 0-0-0-0.00
Eduardo Aparecido, 0-0-0-0.00
Mason Taylor, 0-0-0-0.00
Bob Mitchell, 0-0-0-0.00
Keyshawn Whitehorse, 0-0-0-0.00
Cody Teel, 0-0-0-0.00
Marco Eguchi, 0-0-0-0.00
Marcelo Procopio Pereira, 0-0-0-0.00
Brady Oleson, 0-0-0-0.00
Silvano Alves, 0-0-0-0.00
Ezekiel Mitchell, 0-0-0-0.00
Adriano Salgado, 0-0-0-0.00
Brandon Davis, 0-0-0-0.00
Wyatt Rogers, 0-0-0-0.00