There might be an inclination to compare the Professional Bull Riders’ (PBR) Touring Pro Division (TPD) to the minor leagues of mainstream sports like baseball. While the stops along the Lucas Oil Touring Pro Series feature less prize money than those on the “big tour” — the PBR’s Built Ford Tough Series (BFTS) — the points earned accumulate towards world championships and qualifications to the PBR World Finals.
As such, TPD events such as that hosted on July 18, 2013 by the California Rodeo Salinas committee as the kick-off to their annual rodeo attract the top competitors in the PBR, both human and bovine.
On the riders’ side, three top ten cowboys (6. Shane Proctor, 9. Mike Lee and 10. Chase Outlaw) competed in Salinas with 16 of the top 50 also in attendance. Only 35 riders will make the cut for the World Finals.
On the bulls’ side, the field was stacked with bulls who have made appearances at both the PBR World Finals and the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo. In the finals alone were bulls like Curveball, who has been to both season-ending championship events, Glass Tiger, who has a 96% buck-off rate, and the unridden Mr. Clark. With such a field, it’s no wonder only two cowboys made the full eight seconds during the finals.
Mike Lee, the 2004 PBR World Champion, won the California Rodeo Salinas PBR Touring Pro event with Tyler Bingham second. They were the only cowboys to ride both their bulls.
Check out the highlights from the tough competition.