No. 5 Andrew Alvidrez gains ground in World Championship race as lone rider in standings’ Top 5 to convert Saturday evening inside KFC Yum! Center
By Kacie Albert
LOUISVILLE, Ky. – As the final regular-season PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Unleash The Beast event got underway in Louisville, Kentucky, Saturday evening, the world’s Top 40-ranked riders showed up determined to further intensify the already feverish battle to be crowned the 2023 World Champion. Dener Barbosa (Paulo de Faria, Brazil) dominated, winning Round 1 to surge to an early lead in the PBR Cooper Tires Invitational, presented by Kubota, while Andrew Alvidrez (Seminole, Texas) gained ground in the gold buckle battle as the lone rider inside the Top 5 to cover his bovine athlete opponent.
Barbosa, who also competes for the Nashville Stampede in the separate PBR Team Series, was matched up with I’m Legit Too (Hart Cattle Co./Hale). In a perfect pairing, the reserved Brazilian matched the bull jump-for-jump en route to the 8-second whistle, marked an unmatched 89.5 points.
Courtesy of the top marks, Barbosa garnered 28 Unleash The Beast points, solidifying his No. 9 rank in the world title battle. He climbed within 465.17 points of No. 1 Kaique Pacheco (Itatiba, Brazil), who is not competing in the Bluegrass State due to injury.
Atop the standings, No. 2 Jose Vitor Leme (Ribas do Rio Pardo, Brazil) and No. 3 Dalton Kasel (Muleshoe, Texas) both returned to action, while No. 4 Cooper Davis (Jasper, Texas), remained sidelined.
While Leme was initially ruled to have covered Hostage (Hart Cattle Co./Hale/Randy Wood), upon review, the Austin Gamblers’ sensation was deemed to have slapped the powerful animal athlete at the 1.24-second mark.
Fellow Gamblers rider Kasel also failed to reach the whistle. The 2019 PBR Rookie of the Year was tossed by Crunch Time (Sterk Bucking Bulls) in a quick 2.83 seconds.
Alvidrez was the lone contender inside the Top 5 to gain ground on the No. 1 rank in Louisville. Covering Gangster Time (Classic Jack Cattle/Viducic Bucking Bulls) for 83.25 points, the tenth-best score of the round, Alvidrez garnered 10 Unleash The Beast points.
While the Missouri Thunder rider maintained his No. 5 rank, he is now within 365 points of reclaiming the No. 1 rank.
Returning to the top of the event leaderboard, 19-year-old sensation Brady Turgeon (New River, Arizona) continued to ride red hot. Fresh off his runner-up finish last weekend in Tacoma, Washington, Turgeon logged the second-best score of Round 1 in Kentucky, topping Bomb Diggity (Davis Rodeo Ranch) for 88.25 points.
The silver showing netted Turgeon 18 Unleash The Beast points. He rose from No. 46 to No. 45 in the standings as he attempts to qualify for his career-first PBR World Finals, May 12-21 in Fort Worth, Texas.
Third was the Arizona Ridge Riders’ Chase Dougherty (Decatur, Texas), earning 17 Unleash The Beast points.
Dougherty, who won the most recent Unleash The Beast event in Washington, delivered his fourth consecutive qualified ride when he outlasted Stand Off (Universal Pro Rodeo) for 87.25 points.
Continuing his upward surge in the standings, Dougherty gained two positions, climbing from No. 26 to No. 24.
The Texas Rattlers’ Daniel Keeping (Montague, Texas) improved his odds at winning the World Championship by finishing fourth in Round 1.
Riding Carlos Danger (Farris/Platinum Bull Company) for 86.75 points, Keeping collected 16 Unleash The Beast points, allowing him to tighten his grip on the No. 10 rank. He is now within 551.67 points of the top spot.
Rounding out the Top 5 in fifth was the Ridge Riders’ Vitor Losnake (Bauru, Brazil).
Losnake collected 15 Unleash The Beast points via his 85.75-point ride on Tom Horn (Lucas Manning Bucking Bulls).
Action for the PBR Cooper Tires Invitational, presented by Kubota, will conclude with Round 2 and the championship round on Sunday, April 29. Action gets underway at 1:45 p.m. EDT.
PBR RidePass on Pluto TV will offer re-airs and on-demand replays of every PBR Unleash The Beast event. PBR RidePass is available on desktops, laptops and mobile devices via www.pluto.tv. Click here for on-demand PBR programming.
PBR Unleash The Beast
PBR Cooper Tires Invitational, presented Kubtoa
KFC Yum! Center – Louisville, Kentucky
Event Leaders (Round 1-Round 2-Round 3-Event Aggregate-Event Points)
- Dener Barbosa, 89.5-0-0-89.50-28 Points.
- Brady Turgeon, 88.25-0-0-88.25-18 Points.
- Chase Dougherty, 87.25-0-0-87.25-17 Points.
- Daniel Keeping, 86.75-0-0-86.75-16 Points.
- Vitor Losnake, 85.75-0-0-85.75-15 Points.
- Ramon de Lima, 85.25-0-0-85.25-13 Points.
(tie). Lucas Divino, 85.25-0-0-85.25-13 Points.
(tie). Flavio Zivieri, 85.25-0-0-85.25-13 Points.
- Ezekiel Mitchell, 83.5-0-0-83.50-11 Points.
- Andrew Alvidrez, 83.25-0-0-83.25-10 Points.
- Guilherme Valleiras, 79.5-0-0-79.50-8 Points.
Jose Vitor Leme, 0-0-0-0.00
Dalton Kasel, 0-0-0-0.00
Boudreaux Campbell, 0-0-0-0.00
Rafael Jose de Brito, 0-0-0-0.00
Eduardo Aparecido, 0-0-0-0.00
Jesse Petri, 0-0-0-0.00
Tate Pollmeier, 0-0-0-0.00
Keyshawn Whitehorse, 0-0-0-0.00
Wingson Henrique da Silva, 0-0-0-0.00
Silvano Alves, 0-0-0-0.00
Rafael Henrique dos Santos, 0-0-0-0.00
Colten Fritzlan, 0-0-0-0.00
Eli Vastbinder, 0-0-0-0.00
Manoelito de Souza Junior, 0-0-0-0.00
Koltin Hevalow, 0-0-0-0.00
Wyatt Rogers, 0-0-0-0.00
Austin Richardson, 0-0-0-0.00
Marcus Mast, 0-0-0-0.00
Derek Kolbaba, 0-0-0-0.00
Chase Outlaw, 0-0-0-0.00
Dakota Louis, 0-0-0-0.00
Nick Tetz, 0-0-0-0.00
Aaron Williams, 0-0-0-0.00
Conner Halverson, 0-0-0-0.00
Junior Patrik Souza, 0-0-0-0.00
Afonso Quintino, 0-0-0-0.00
Ednei Caminhas, 0-0-0-0.00
Ednélio Almeida, 0-0-0-0.00
Lane Lasley, 0-0-0-0.00