Of course I have a few things to say about The American rodeo (eventually I’ll get around to the Iron Cowboy). First off, what an annoying title! How about The $2,000,000 Rodeo, or Extreme Rodeo, or The Best Vs. the Beasts, or Ultimate Challenge–something a little less, um, jingoistic? So ironic that “The Brazilian” won it. Specifically, the most maligned Brazilian. If I were Silvano Alves, I’d have done my “Told you so!” dance all over the arena. But he’s too much of a gentleman and a very good sport.

Okay, now to the action:

For once, the draw looked like an honest draw, apart from the fact that obviously the powers-that-be wanted J.B. Mauney to take a crack at Mick E Mouse. They figured that if he rode, they could say The Dragon Slayer beat the three toughest bulls in the world. You know: The Storyline.


  • J.W. Harris nailed it! He kept fighting for position, even as Who Dey was stumbling down and forward, nose in the dirt. “This guy is on a roll like butter,” said someone who wishes he were Justin McKee. Oh, wait a minute—I think that was Justin McKee! Score was 90.5—smooth, J.W.!
  • Ben Jones’s buckoff (by David’s Dream), resulted in his customary, “Fuck!” I get a kick out of his dancing and his cursing.


  • Whenever the commentators go overboard singing Stormy Wing’s praises, they jinx him. This time it was Justin McBride: Stormy’s the only guy to ride 3 bulls at the semi-finals to qualify, and he’s possibly World Champion caliber. Wrong. There’s no such thing as an inconsistent World Champion. If they toned down the hype, he’d probably ride better! Almost every time they extravagantly build up their “home run hitter” who “swings for the fences,” he gets bucked off; this time Hou’s Back did it to him. Stormy let out a shout of frustration on his way off the dirt. I think he should take it out on the Booth Boys.
  • Mick E Mouse’s emphatic kick launched J.B. Mauney. It was a sad sight seeing J.B. so unhappy, dragging his rope back to the locker room. But I do like the look on Marlene Henry’s face when her boy takes down another one.
  • Jeremiah’s tricky gear change came when he was barely into the spin—it looked like he thought up that move on the spot, turning on a dime. Silvano Alves was pretty darned surprised, but then, this bull hasn’t been ridden in 16 outs.
  • João Ricardo Vieira has been trying to ride Buck Dynasty since 2013; this was his 4th try. It didn’t help thatas the bull lurched, people were yelling at him to get out of the chute before he finished wrapping. Out on the dirt, B.D. was slinging his head back and forth, making his body hesitate in mid-air. The question is, Was he doing it on purpose because he knew the effect it was having on Vieira, or was that just him doing his thang?


The short go was short and sweet: only one ride. It was the universe’s gift to Silvano: he advanced to the short round only because there were 3 riders to fill 4 slots.

  • Cody Nance climbed on Diesel with a cast on his free arm, got flipped up high and then flat down. His face collided with the bull’s skull; for some reason Cody wasn’t wearing his Hannibal Lecter mask and helmet combo. He seemed to be semi-conscious, and got up slowly, looking pretty woozy. Why on earth he decided to go bare-faced on this occasion is a mystery. A lot of things he does are a mystery to me.
  • Jason Malone on Percolator was looking good until 7.37–then everyone was disappointed, none more so than commentator on duty, Ty Murray: “I think I tore a groin pulling for him up in this chair!” P.S. for all you people who are driving me crazy: It’s pronounced Perk-O-later, not Perk-you-later!
  • I was holding my breath the whole time J.W. Harris was on Tennessee Honey, but he wasn’t on long enough: 7.82, and boy did I groan. I’m sure he was thrilled, too.

Naturally some commentators resented the fact that Alves made it into the short go without riding his first bull. (Like it was his fault!) McBride was the first to bellyache about chute procedure: “Silvano, getting pretty picky about how this bull is standing.” (Remember, that applies mostly to Brazilian riders. Other riders are “trying to get everything just right.”)

Yeah, Silvano was being “picky,” because first Raven Flyer was leaning against the back of the chute, then was wadded up, and then lay down. When the bull stood up, Silvano re-wrapped. Of course people started hurrying him while the bull was rattling around.

For extra drama, Silvano’s ride was reviewed to see if he made 8 seconds with the rope still in his hand. They took a real-time look with the clock. “Tie goes to the rider,” Ty reminded us. Yep, that’s the rule: if a review is inconclusive, the rider gets a score. This was one of the few times I’ve seen Silvano look anxious, as he waited for the verdict and his score: 88.25 (and his $100,000). It must’ve killed the judges to have to give him the win. There was no wiggle room here. However, I do have to say they weren’t vindictive–some other judges might throw an 80 at him out of spite.

This whole scenario was what people call the luck of the Irish.” We might need to revise that.


Silvano had to walk down a receiving line, shaking hands with all kinds of total strangers, some of whom didn’t look happy to see him. Obviously they thought an American should win The American. Last one on line is Taylor Price* (see below), who gives him an enthusiastic high five, and makes Alves smile. Silvano’s kids are with him, his little boy Eduardinho holding the shiny new buckle—unfortunately, that meant his Pop got stuck holding a rifle. After the brief obligatory interview with Leah Garcia (brief because once again, a translator has disappeared at a big occasion), he hugged his wife. Not a half-exposed RockStarMonsterEnergyJackDaniels “girl.” A real woman.

*This is what’s cool about that:
Taylor Price is the only other person in the event who could understand what Alves went through waiting for that review. Price is a 22-year-old bronc rider from Huntsville, Texas, a Sam Houston State University graduate with a major in criminal justice and a minor in Middle Eastern studies. In the short round, he didn’t think he’d made the whistle on Frontier’s Show Stomper; he lay face down in the dirt for a long time, looking defeated. Hearing the crowd making noise, he slowly got up on his knees looking puzzled. He heard that he did make 8, and jumped up—if his score was more than 87, he’d win. His score was 89.75, and he just about burst. Price beat the world’s top 10 bareback bronc riders, and was handed a big cardboard $100K check, plus a $500,000 bonus. Nice going, Taylor!










About Bull Riding Marketing

Creative services, marketing and public relations professional from entertainment industry background. Published in magazines and newspapers worldwide. I believe bull riders are the new rock stars.
This entry was posted in Built Ford Tough Series, Bull Riding, cowboys, PRCA and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.


  1. d fish says:

    The reason riders like JW Harris take so long, or don’t come to the PBR is because a lot of them don’t care for it and view rodeo, and the PRCA as the true champion of bull riding. Jim Shoulders, Larry Mahan, and Donnie Gay were PRCA champions. Even though PBR wants to act like they invented the sport they didn’t and the way guys get disrespected from other organizations or disrespected for their nationality is embarrassing. Watch last years NFR and tell me Sage Kimzey wouldn’t do great in the PBR! Watch the NFR or the PRCA champions challenge on CBS sports network and you’d be shocked by the professional broadcast without any bias and there are foreign contestants!

    The American is a non PRCA rodeo, and is a great concept and event, but when they bring in PBR announcers you can tell the drop off in analyst quality. I just don’t get it. I understand the need to promote the PBR but phrases like this level, the Brazilians, and obvious PBR bias is terrible and hurts the event.

    As for the point system it’d be nice if the PBR went back to the traditional way of crowning a champion and that’s by most money earned. Its easy to understand and makes the most sense. It puts an emphasis on winning, and rewards consistency. But what do I know.


    • I couldn’t agree more! The PBR is so snobby–perfect example is how long it took for them to look at J.W. I started a few years ago saying I think he’d do well in PBR events, but what do I know? I was mortified when they called Harris “Rookie of the Year.” Somehow being a multiple PRCA champion doesn’t count if it’s J.W., but it does if it’s Ty Murray– take away the number of PRCA events he won, and you can’t call him “nine-time World Champion” any more!

      One thing I’ve commented on several times is that PRCA and CBR announcers don’t have a problem with where a rider came from or what color his skin is. It’s a pleasure to watch events where nobody’s yelling nonsense at us or making snide comments about other organizations. I wish there were more televised events!

      I’d love to see Sage kick some PBR butt! If you haven’t already, see my interview with him in my Feb. 28 post.


  2. A tired fan says:

    Yes, I too have noticed no Jeff Robinson. His wife used to always blog. Does anyone know who he pissed off?


  3. I give up, just can’t take it anymore. I will just read your column from now on. I can not understand how they keep getting away with their cheating. Why can’t someone do something to stop it.
    Adriano is on the board now so I thought maybe things would change. Nope!
    Have you noticed no Jeff Robinson anymore. He always had a truckload of bulls there. Would like to know what happened there.
    Would certainly love to see Alves or Jaoa win. Also wonder why JW hadn’t come to PBR before.
    Just venting, sorry.


  4. saraht says:

    Here is Randy Bernard’s response to why Silvano was put into the short-go:

    I want to thank everyone for their kind comments about The AMERICAN. There’s been some concern about the format in the bull riding that brought Silvano Alves into the top-four finals, so I thought I’d explain it.

    Here’s why I made this decision. First and foremost is making sure we entertain and give fans the best experience and value possible for their ticket. I know fans spend hard-earned money for their AMERICAN tickets, and I want to make sure they get to see a full short round in bull riding. Three guys rode their first bull on Sunday, but what if that number had been one? If one or zero would have ridden, their wouldn’t be a Shootout round, and that takes away from what fans came to see and watch on TV.

    I decided unfilled spots could be filled by the guys based on the order in which they were invited (world rankings). I felt that was fair, because every man has a chance to cover his bull and any man who ranks at the top of the world standings earned that the hard way.

    On Sunday, every single bull rider had the opportunity to ride his bull. Unfortunately, only three of them did, and we had to bring someone up to ensure the event didn’t lack a great Shootout round. Yes, this event is new, but these rules were very thought-out with the fan in mind, as well as each athlete in every event.

    — Randy Bernard


    • I think he’s right. If it were a different rider, some people wouldn’t have gotten into a snit.
      But Randy does need a copy editor! “If one or zero would have ridden, their wouldn’t have been a Shootout round”– yikes!


    • S. says:

      “Kind” comments. Hilarious shade from Bernard there.


    • Is Randy Bernard involved again?
      What did they do with Jeff Robinson he always brought a truck load of bulls
      I can’t watch anymore I have had it with all their dirty little tricks. I will just read your comments.
      Thank the Lord their are a few that see through them.


      • S. says:

        Randy Bernard is now with RFD-TV, and instrumental to the development of The American. I wish he were more involved with the PBR.


      • I know. He’s a smart marketing guy. He knows how to extend RFD-TV’s reach. If he can get it into more markets, that’s a big ol’ feather in his cap.

        From the timing of his exit from the PBR, I’d guess one of two things: he took one look down the road at what Spire Capital might do, and said, See ya. Or… they said, We’re coming in with our own people who have never been involved in bull riding, so See ya. The money guys have the clout.

        The one time I got near him in NYC, when the venture capitalist guys brought in Jeffrey Pollack and dumped Justin McKee, I said, “PLEASE come back to the PBR!” He gave a big fake smile and said, “They’re doing fine without me.”


  5. S. says:

    I couldn’t watch it since the Comcast Overlords don’t carry RFD-TV in my area, so thanks for the recap. Even if I wanted to, which I sort of did, I couldn’t avoid the ranting, raving and outrage about Alves’ win, or Craig Hummer saying something about how they should call it “The Brazilican.” (I might have mangled that in a slightly different way than he did.)


    • Luckily for our eardrums, Hummer wasn’t on duty for that event. Probably the ranting and raving and outrage by other people took place afterward. At least there wasn’t a lot of trashing on air, just a little sniping.


      • S. says:

        I saw a lot of anguish on Facebook when The American adjusted some winnings after the fact due to some lack of clarity in their rules (for tie-down roping?). A bunch of people were saying they should “fix it” and give money to J.W. Harris rather than Silvano Alves. I don’t think the rules were unclear in the bull riding scenario, folks, just the result was not to your liking. Too bad!

        Hummer did say something like that in the intro/recap of previous event at the next PBR event. Sigh.


      • Wow, that is REALLY bad business! How can these people be so amateurish?? Don’t they have a lawyer look at all their material? I never watch the events that torture calves, so I don’t know what to say. The bull riding rules were simple: Ride or go home. When only 3 guys rode, and they needed 4 in the short go (who knows why), they put Silvano in. That’s no arbitrary decision–especially since he’s the last guy they’d want in there! It may have had something to do with who lasted the longest on his first bull. One year in Worcester when NOBODY rode in the final round, they gave out the prize money according to who had the longest time. Really, they should’ve split it among the bulls!


Talk to me!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s