from Heather Croze, pbrnow.com
PUEBLO, Co. – The PBR (Professional Bull Riders) BlueDEF Tour (BDT) has announced the qualifiers who will be competing at the BlueDEF Finals on Oct. 29-31 at South Point Arena in Las Vegas for a chance to take the title of the PBR’s premier expansion series and a chance to win the biggest and most prestigious event on the PBR tour the following weekend.
The BlueDEF Finals will mark the end of the 2016 season for several athletes. Yet the year will continue for five talented bull riders the following weekend as they will qualify for the PBR World Finals to be held at T-Mobile Arena on Nov. 2-6.
Six Built Ford Tough Series (BFTS) riders will highlight the field of competitors along with two-time PRCA Champion Sage Kimzey and four-time PRCA Champion and BFTS rider J.W. Harris. Each athlete will be competing for their share of the $150,000 BlueDEF Finals total event purse and a chance to win PBR’s ultimate event championship and the $250,000 paycheck.
This year, 40 talented bull riding stars competing on the BDT have made the cut:
Alexandre Cardozo Indaiatuba, Brazil
Beau Willis Bowen, Australia
Brady Sims Holt, Missouri
Brant Atwood Pampa, Texas
Chase Outlaw Hamburg, Arkansas
Cody Ford Stanfeild, Oregon
Cody Heffernan Singleton, Australia
Cody Hudson Camas, Washington
Cody Nance Paris, Tennessee
Cody Rodeo Tyler Guthrie, Oklahoma
Dakota Buttar Kindersley, Saskatchewan
Dener Barbosa Paulao de Faria, Brazil
Derek Kolbaba Walla Walla, Washington
Emilio Resende Santa Helena do Goias, Brazil
Fabiano Vieira Perola, Brazil
Fraser Babbington Gisborne, New Zealand
J.W. Harris Mullin, Texas
Jay Miller Liberty, South Carolina
Josh Faircloth Randleman, North Carolina
Juan Carlos Contreras Huichapan, Mexico
Juliano Antonio da Silva Eloi Mendes, Brazil
Kade Alberty Beggs, Oklahoma
Keyshawn Whitehorse The Woodlands, Texas
Kurt Shephard Atherton, Australia
Lindomar Lino Anapolis, Brazil
Marco Eguchi Poa, Brazil
Matt Triplett Columbia Falls, Montana
Michael Lane Tazewell, Virginia
Mike Lee Decatur, Texas
Nathan Schaper Grassy Butte, North Dakota
Neil Holmes Houston, Texas
Nevada Newman Melstone, Montana
Paulo Lima Bezerros, Brazil
Robson Aragao Aracaju Sergipe, Brazil
Ryan Roberts Caldwell, Idaho
Sage Kimzey Weatherford, Oklahoma
Tyler Harr Hazen, Arkansas
Valdiron de Oliveira Piranhas, Brazil
Winston Lopez Bandera, Texas
Zane Cook Fort Gibson, Oklahoma
The invites also include the PRCA champion, the CNFR champion, the INFR champion and the NHSRA champion who will all be eligible to compete as well.
The BDT Finals will be the last opportunity for these riders to qualify for the PBR World Finals, as only five riders will advance to next weekend’s five-days of competition. The bull riders who will advance will be the top international invite, the top two from the final BDT season standings who are not in the PBR’s Top-35 and the event average winner who is not in Top-35 as long as they finish in the Top-5 of the BDT Finals.
On Saturday, Sunday and Monday nights, each of the competitors will ride one bull apiece. The scores from the three rounds will then be combined, and the riders with the Top 10 highest totals will return for a final ride in the championship round on Monday. The winner will be the rider who has earned the most event points after all four rounds….