Professional Bull Riders
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Professional Bull Riders
Professional Bull Riders
Professional Bull Riders logo.jpg
Sport Bull Riding
Founded 1992
Owner(s) WME-IMG
Competitors Over 1,200 total, 35 in highest ranked tour
Countries  United States
 New Zealand
Most recent
United States Jess Lockwood
Official website

Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR) is an international professional bull riding organization based in Pueblo, Colorado, United States. In the United States, PBR events have been televised on CBS and CBS Sports Network since 2013.[1][2] More than 1,200 cowboys from the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand and other countries hold PBR memberships.


The organization began in 1992 through the efforts of 21 professional bull riders who gathered in a hotel room in Scottsdale, Arizona and each contributed $1,000.[3] Since that time, the organization has grown into three tours which stage over 100 events in the United States every year. Prize money has exploded from over $330,000 in 1994 to over $11 million in 2008. In 2007, investment firm Spire Capital Partners acquired a majority stake in PBR.[4]

The PBR moved to its current headquarters in Pueblo, Colorado in 2006. Its original headquarters were located in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Riders attempt to stay on a bucking bull for eight seconds, and rides are judged based on both the rider's and the bull's performance, with four judges scoring both the rider and the bull each from one to twenty five points, the scores are totalled and divided by two, with the final possibility of one hundred points. At the end of each event, the top 15 riders compete in the short round, or "short go"; the rider with the highest point total from the entire event becomes the winner.

Since 2003, the PBR has awarded its annual world champion a $1,000,000 bonus.

From 2007-2010, the PBR also hosted a team competition format called the PBR World Cup, where 25 bull riders (altogether representing five different countries) competed to win the title of best bull rider in the world.

Randy Bernard, shown here in 2011, served as the CEO for Professional Bull Riders from 1995 to 2010.

Total viewership, including event attendees and the television audience, grew 52 percent between 2002 and 2004. In 2004, 16.4 million fans watched or attended a PBR event. By 2008, over 100 million watched the PBR on television, and over 1.7 million attended a live event.

The original CEO of the PBR was Sam Applebaum.[5]Randy Bernard became CEO of the PBR in 1995, a position he held until he resigned in 2010 to become the CEO of INDYCAR.[6] On February 23, 2011, the PBR announced that Jim Haworth had become its new CEO.[7] Then on June 29, 2015, the PBR announced that Haworth was promoted to Chairman, while COO Sean Gleason had become the new CEO.[8]

Canada, Brazil, Australia, and Mexico each have their own PBR tours, and points earned on those tours count towards the U.S. qualifier standings and a spot in the PBR World Finals. A tour in China was scheduled to begin sometime in 2015 and PBR New Zealand was set to debut in Christchurch on November 13, 2014. Opportunities for expansion into Argentina are being explored as well.

WME | IMG bought the PBR in April 2015.[9]

PBR Tours

The PBR started out with one tour when it was established in 1992. Today, it offers three tours and eligibility of contestants at each level is based on previous performance.

  • The Touring Pro Division tour, which began in 1995, is a developmental tour. Both veterans and newcomers can ride top ranked bulls and earn points toward eligibility in higher level tours.
  • The Velocity Tour, which began in 2014, is the premier expansion tour for the PBR. New competitors who show potential compete alongside or more experienced professionals.
  • The PBR 25th Unleash the Beast Tour is the elite series of the PBR. This tour was established in 2018, replacing the Built Ford Tough Series tour. This is the tour where the best riders and bulls compete, and it culminates in the PBR World Finals at the end of the year, which take place in Las Vegas at the T-Mobile Arena. It includes no more than 30 events across the United States each year. Pyrotechnics, pulsating music, and special effects open each event, and each features the top 35 riders in the world at the time. The 2018 tour is referred to as the 25th in celebration of 2018 being the PBR's 25th year of competition.[10]

The Built Ford Tough Series ran from 2003 through 2017 and was the elite series of the PBR at the time. It took place in Las Vegas, Nevada, at the Thomas & Mack Center until 2015, and then at the T-Mobile Arena until its conclusion. The Bud Light Cup Series ran from 1994 through 2002 and was the elite series of the PBR at the time.

PBR World Champions

o Tuff Hedeman was also the 1986, 1989, and 1991 Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) world champion bull rider.

World Finals Event Champions

  • 2017 Brazil Jose Vitor Leme
  • 2016 United States Ryan Dirteater
  • 2015 United States Cooper Davis
  • 2014 Brazil Silvano Alves
  • 2013 United States J.B. Mauney
  • 2012, 2011 Brazil Robson Palermo
  • 2010 Brazil Renato Nunes
  • 2009 United States J.B. Mauney
  • 2008 Brazil Robson Palermo
  • 2007 United States Wiley Petersen
  • 2006 United States L.J. Jenkins
  • 2005 Brazil Guilherme Marchi
  • 2004 United States Mike Lee
  • 2003 United States Jody Newberry
  • 2002 United States J.W. Hart
  • 2001 United States Luke Snyder
  • 2000 United States Tater Porter
  • 1999 United States Ty Murray o
  • 1998 United States Reed Corder
  • 1997 Australia Troy Dunn
  • 1996 United States Ronnie Kitchens
  • 1995 Australia Troy Dunn
  • 1994 United States Ted Nuce o

o Ted Nuce was also the 1985 PRCA world champion bull rider.

o Ty Murray was also the 1989-94 and 1998 PRCA world champion all-around rodeo cowboy as well as the 1993 & 1998 PRCA world champion bull rider.

World Champion Bull

o Bodacious was also the 1994-95 PRCA bull of the year. Now that Bruiser has won the PRCA Bucking Bull of the Year for 2017, he and Bruiser are the only bulls to win both the PRCA and PBR titles. Each bull won their two titles in the same year. Bruiser won both of his titles in 2017. Bodacious won both of his titles in 1995.[11]

oo There was actually a tie between Bruiser, Long John and Pearl Harbor, which was resolved by taking the sum of the bull's best eight outs for the season. That is done according to the PBR rules as the first way to resolve a tiebreaker.[12]

Touring Pro Division Champions

  • 2017 United States Ezekiel Mitchell
  • 2016 United States Cody Nance
  • 2015 Brazil Luis Blanco
  • 2014 United States Jason Malone
  • 2013 United States Chase Outlaw
  • 2012 Brazil Edevaldo Ferreira
  • 2011 United States Shane Proctor
  • 2010 United States Douglas Duncan
  • 2009 United States J.B. Mauney
  • 2008, 2007 United States Clayton Williams
  • 2006 United States J.B. Mauney
  • 2005 Brazil Edgard Oliveira
  • 2004 United States Ross Johnson
  • 2003, 2002 Brazil Adriano Moraes
  • 2001 Brazil Paulo Crimber
  • 2000 United States Chris Shivers
  • 1999 United States Jason Bennett
  • 1998 United States Brian Herman
  • 1997 United States Chris Shivers
  • 1996 Australia Troy Dunn
  • 1995 United States Tuff Hedeman

o Ross Johnson was also the 2003 Championship Bull Riding (CBR) world champion.

o Shane Proctor was also the 2011 PRCA world champion bull rider.

Velocity Tour Champions

  • 2017 Brazil Alex Marcilio
  • 2016 United States Chase Outlaw
  • 2015 United States Gage Gay
  • 2014 United States Jason Malone

Global Cup

2017 United States TeamUSA[13]

Other awards

The PBR has some secondary awards, in addition to the World Championship, given out annually, many named after bull riders fatally injured during competition.[14]

The Glen Keeley Award is for the Canadian bull rider who earns the most points throughout the entire season. It is named for Glen Keeley, a Canadian bull rider who was fatally injured during the 2000 Ty Murray Invitational in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The Lane Frost/Brent Thurman Award is for the highest-scoring single ride at the World Finals. It is named for Lane Frost, fatally injured during a competition in Cheyenne, Wyoming in 1989, and Brent Thurman, fatally injured during the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas in 1994.

The Rookie of the Year award goes to the rookie (first year of Built Ford Tough Series competition) bull rider who wins the most points of all first-year competitors.

The Stock Contractor of the Year award goes to the stock contractor who has supplied the best bulls to Built Ford Tough Series events. This award is given based on a vote among bull riders.[14]

The PBR also has some recognition awards Professional Bull Riders: Heroes and Legends. Some of these like the Ring of Honor and the Brand of Honor are the equivalent of a Hall of Fame recognition. There is also the Jim Shoulders Lifetime Achievement Award and the Sharon Shoulders award.[15]

Glen Keeley Award recipients

  • 2017 - Dakota Buttar
  • 2016, 2015, 2014 - Tanner Byrne
  • 2013 - Aaron Roy
  • 2012 - Chad Besplug
  • 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008 - Aaron Roy
  • 2007 - Scott Schiffner
  • 2006 - Jesse Torkelson
  • 2005 - Matt Roy
  • 2004 - Rob Bell
  • 2003, 2002 - Reuben Geleynse
  • 2001, 2000 - B.J. Kramps

Lane Frost/Brent Thurman Award

  • 2017 - Jose Vitor Leme
  • 2016 - Cooper Davis
  • 2015, 2014, 2013 - J. B. Mauney
  • 2012 - Austin Meier, Chris Shivers
  • 2011 - Robson Palermo
  • 2010 - Valdiron de Oliveira
  • 2009, 2008, 2007 - J. B. Mauney
  • 2006 - Adriano Moraes, Dustin Hall
  • 2005 - Cody Whitney
  • 2004 - Mike Lee, Michael Gaffney
  • 2003 - Jody Newberry
  • 2002 - Cory McFadden
  • 2001 - Chris Shivers
  • 2000 - Ednei Caminhas
  • 1999 - Chris Shivers, Terry Don West
  • 1998 - Cody Custer
  • 1997 - Troy Dunn
  • 1996 - Adriano Moraes

Rookie of the Year

  • 2017 Brazil Jose Vitor Leme
  • 2016 United States Jess Lockwood
  • 2015 Brazil Kaique Pacheco
  • 2014 United States J. W. Harris o
  • 2013 Brazil Joao Ricardo Vieira
  • 2012 Brazil Emilio Resende
  • 2011 Brazil Rubens Barbosa
  • 2010 Brazil Silvano Alves
  • 2009 United States Cody Nance
  • 2008 United States Reese Cates
  • 2007 United States Clayton Williams
  • 2006 United States J.B. Mauney
  • 2005 United States Kody Lostroh
  • 2004 United States Zack Brown
  • 2003 United States Jody Newberry
  • 2002 United States Dan Henricks
  • 2001 United States Luke Snyder
  • 2000 United States Jason Bennett
  • 1999 United States Mike White o
  • 1998 United States Pete Hessman
  • 1997 United States Keith Adams
  • 1996 United States Ronnie Kitchens
  • 1995 United States Bubba Dunn
  • 1994 United States J.W. Hart


o Mike White was also the 1999 PRCA world champion bull rider, as well as the 2002 CBR world champion.

o J. W. Harris was also the 2008-10 & 2013 PRCA world champion bull rider.

Stock Contractor of the Year

  • 2017, 2016, 2015, 2014 - Chad Berger Bucking Bulls
  • 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010 - Jeff Robinson Bucking Bulls
  • 2009, 2008, 2007 - Chad Berger Bucking Bulls
  • 2006, 2005, 2004, 2003, 2002, 2001 - D&H Cattle Company
  • 2000 - Herrington Cattle Company
  • 1999, 1998, 1997, 1996, 1995 - Terry Williams Bucking Bulls

See also


  1. ^ Hummer, Craig; Murray, Ty (December 12, 2012). "PBR SIGNS EXCLUSIVE TELEVISION AGREEMENT WITH CBS SPORTS". PBR. Archived from the original on December 16, 2012. Retrieved 2012. 
  2. ^ "PBR SIGNS EXCLUSIVE TELEVISION AGREEMENT WITH CBS SPORTS". CBS Sports. December 12, 2012. Retrieved 2012. 
  3. ^ * Fried Twinkies, Buckle Bunnies & Bull Riders: A Year Inside The Professional Bull Riders Tour, Josh Peter, Rodale, 2005
  4. ^ Nethery, Ross (May 5, 2008). "Elway, Gretzky invest in Professional Bull Riders". Denver Business Journal. Retrieved . 
  5. ^ Cartwright, Keith Ryan (April 10, 2013). "Professional Bull Riders - It all started in a motel room". Retrieved . 
  6. ^ "PBR CEO RANDY BERNARD RESIGNS". February 1, 2010. Archived from the original on February 5, 2010. Retrieved . 
  7. ^ "Jim Haworth named Chief Executive Officer of the PBR". February 23, 2011. Archived from the original on July 15, 2011. Retrieved . 
  8. ^ Abbott, Denise M. (June 29, 2015). "PBR appoints new leadership team". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved . 
  9. ^ "WME | IMG acquires Professional Bull Riders, INC". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2017. 
  10. ^ "Monster Energy Expands Relationship with Professional Bull Riders". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2018. 
  11. ^ "SweetPro's Bruiser Wins PBR and PRCA World Championships". CISION PR Web. Retrieved 2018. 
  12. ^ "SweetPro's Bruiser wins 2016 World Champion Bull title". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2016. 
  13. ^ "Team USA wins Inaugural PBR Global Cup". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2017. 
  14. ^ a b "Professional Bull Riders - Dictionary". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2017. 
  15. ^ "Professional Bull Riders - Heroes and Legends". Professional Bull Riders. Retrieved 2017. 
  16. ^ "Professional Bull Riders - Event Winners / Champions". Retrieved . 

Further reading

External links

  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.



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