That new point system initiated by PBR last year confused a lot of people, and I’m still wondering about that second sentence:
“There will be only one set of standings, starting this year (2014), and the draw for each Built Ford Tough Series event will be the top 35 riders on Tuesday, based on cumulative points from BFTS, TPD, and international events.”
This change confirms my half-facetious comment a while ago that more Australian riders are showing up at BFTS events, as part of the PBR effort to combat the Killer Bs.
Here’s the thing about the new system: Most of the Western Hemisphere riders aren’t going to schlep to Australia to rack up points, though they’ll go as far as Canada. But that factor is balanced by the fact that now, BFTS riders have even more incentive to work TPD and Canadian events–wearing themselves out before the second half of the season. The Americans aren’t going to shlep to Brazil to compete, though I think Douglas Duncan did at one point. (Not sure.) So the U.S. is still the battleground– but the Brazilian riders are smart; they go home to rack up points, and so far as I can see, they don’t come back from the summer all banged up. (Robson Palermo’s boo-boos were all acquired here.)
Maybe this new system will level the field a bit for the TPD guys so they can open the BFTS door a crack. Lately, we’ve seen new names at BFTS events more frequently. Usually the explanation is that the rider won some event last weekend that entitled him to be at the BFTS event, but that doesn’t quite make sense to me, unless his cumulative points somehow vaulted him up to a position just below the top 35 guys. Or maybe it’s a quota system, but nobody’s calling it that.
Speaking of quota systems: do you mean to tell me that in all of the U.S., Canada, Australia, and Brazil, in both the BFTS and the TPD, the only black cowboy is Jay Miller? We haven’t seen Craig Jackson on the BFTS since 2007, so as far as I know, that’s the current total. In any business or institution, the usual explanation for this scenario is that “The competition’s open to anyone at the entry level,” “Black people just don’t apply for the jobs,” “We tried recruiting, but they weren’t interested,” “We don’t intentionally exclude anyone,” “This is just about meeting the requirements, nothing else,” bla bla bla.
Pull the other one. This setup is NEVER accidental. At least the CBR doesn’t seem to have an issue with the color of their cowboys.
And now someone will post a comment to this blog saying, “You always think there’s a conspiracy.” “What about Myrtis Dightman,” “What about Fred Whitfield,” “What about Charlie Sampson,” “What about Abe Morris,” “What about Willie Thomas”?
Uh, if you can name most of the well-known black bull riders, that should tell you that there’s something going on, other than talent. Incidents like this may explain what the atmosphere is like: in a San Antonio event, PRCA rider Willie Thomas rode his third bull for 14 seconds, and then the whistle blew. Somehow that put him in 2nd place, without the average money, instead of 1st, which an 8-second ride would’ve done. I’m sure the scoop on that one was, a clock malfunction. Uh-huh.
If some math whiz out there wants to compare what this season’s standings are like, using the new system, with what they’d have been under the old system, I’d love to see the stats. The numbers might not make me happy, but the truth would be nice to hear.