A mere two weeks after the PBR World Championships ended in
grand style in Las Vegas, Nevada, the first stop of the new season began in
Duluth, Georgia. This was also the Challenger Tour Championships, but almost
without exception all of the BFTS men were on hand to get a jump on 2010.
Noticeably absent was the 2009 World Champ Kody Lostroh.
Three days after winning his title, Lostroh had surgery on his left elbow, his
riding arm. Chips were removed and some work was also done on the lateral
ligament and muscle tissue. But this is the only event that Kody expects to
miss. He claims that he will be back in January, when the tour starts again in
Guilherme Marchi captures the event win in the first event of the 2010 season.
Andy Watson/Bull Stock Media photo
And speaking of back, Guilherme Marchi made a loud statement
that his poor showing in the Finals was not going to continue, as he ran off
with the event win, not to mention the $210,000 that went along with that.
Marchi said that his confidence is back. When asked about
his performance during this event he replied, laughing, “I drew good bulls to
win this event. I’m a rich cowboy now!”
But Guilherme was not the only one that made his mark early.
J.B. Mauney was the Challenger Tour Championship winner and netted a pretty
good payday himself - $78,750. He was also awarded the highest score of the
event, a huge 92.25 on the great D&H Cattle Co./Clifton Wiggins bull,
Make no mistake; the accolades should not be showered on
only those two riders. Ned Cross hit the board in two of three round, topping
things off in the short-go when he covered the previously unridden Major Payne
to a big 91. Robinson/Katich/Pinnacle Bull Group owns Major Payne. These good
showings placed him third in the average.
Ross Coleman won the first round after riding Ding-A-Ling,
owned by Jeff Robinson Bucking Bulls, to an 86.75. He placed in the third
round, and was third on Hot Stuff in the Championship Round. He was awarded an
87.5 on that D&H Cattle Co. bull. Those placings put him fourth in the
The top 10 in the event average were Marchi, Mauney, Cross,
Coleman, Robson Palermo, Jordan Hupp, Ryan McConnel, who was good to see back
after a couple of bad moments in the Finals, Valdiron de Oliveira, Travis
Briscoe, and Dustin Elliot.
Elliot did an amazing job, considering that he was informed
while he was at the event that his father had been killed in an automobile
accident. He stayed on to do his job, making it into the short-go with two good
rides leading up to that, but quickly left as soon as his last ride was over.
My thoughts and prayers go out to Dustin and his family at this very difficult
So now there is a bit of rest for the men, allowing them to
spend the holidays with their families. The tour starts up again January second
through the fourth in Baltimore, Maryland, and by then I will definitely have bull
Speaking of cravings, I hope each and everyone of you have a
wonderful Thanksgiving, with lots of good food, friends, and family. Also enjoy
the holiday season that follows!