Mauricio Moreira Wins First Competition of Season-Launch PBR Unleash The Beast Event in Ocala
Perfect effort in the Sunshine State propels surging Brazilian to career-first world No. 1 rank
At the 2021 season-launch PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Unleash The Beast: American Roots Edition event in Ocala, Florida, surging Brazilian Maurico Moreira (Gaviao Peixoto, Brazil) was dominant Saturday afternoon, winning the opening competition for the PBR Monster Energy Invitational.
The American Roots Edition is a highly-anticipated, limited series of premier series tour stops, visiting iconic outdoor western sports venues across the southern United States.
Twenty-one-year-old Moreira got off to a hot start, delivering the second best score in Round 1 when he covered The Kickin’ Chicken (Diamond M Bucking Bulls) for 86.75 points.
Earning the second selection in the championship round bull draft, Moreira architected a rematch, choosing Big Black (K-C Bucking Bulls/Joe & Nina Webb). He previously covered the powerful animal athlete for a career-best 91.25 points in March 2020 in Duluth, Georgia.
Moreira once again reached the 8-second whistle, marked a competition-high 89.75 points.
For his competition victory, Moreira earned a crucial 130 world points and $12,750, propelling him to the world No. 1 rank for the first time in his career.
In 2021, PBR instituted an event format change. When the PBR Monster Energy Invitational continues on Sunday, January 17 at 2:00 p.m. ET, the tour stop will once again feature a Round 1 with 30 competitors, followed by the Top 12 advancing to the championship round.
In addition to crowning yet another competition winner, the last day of action for the PBR Monster Energy Invitational will also anoint the first premier series event winner of the 2021 season. The event winner, who will receive a $10,000 bonus, will be the rider who earns the most world points across both competitions.
Cooper Davis (Jasper, Texas) finished second in the competition, earning 76 world points and $6,350.
The 2016 PBR World Champion was the only other cowboy to go a flawless 2-for-2. His qualified rides included an 85.25-point score on El Chapo (Deer Prairie Creek Bucking Bulls/5S Bucking Bulls) in Round 1, and an 87.5-point trip on Strange Cargo (Jane Clark/Gene Owen) in the championship round.
Backed by a Round 1 victory, Cole Melancon (Paris, Texas) was third.
The Texan’s 87.25-point effort aboard Dang It (Davis Rodeo Ranch/Fogle) netted him 60 world points and a $5,500 payday.
Melancon is now ranked No. 4 in the world standings, 70 points removed from the top spot.
Fourth was surging young gun Kyler Oliver (Roy, Utah) who delivered a statement 86.5-point ride atop Satan’s Seed (Diamond M Bucking Bulls) in Round 1.
Oliver’s Top-5 finish in the competition allowed him to crack the world’s Top 10 for the first time in his young career. The 21-year-old is now No. 7 in the world, 95 points back of No. 1 Moreira.
Rounding out the Top 5 for the opening competition of the PBR Monster Energy Invitational in fifth was Dener Barbosa (Paulo de Faria, Brazil), Eduardo Aparecido (Gouvelandia, Brazil) and Alex Cerqueira (Iguatemi, Brazil) who all delivered matching 86-point scores in Round 1.
Barbosa covered Show Me Homie (K-C Bucking Bulls/JoZ Bucking Bulls), while Aparecido rode Wade Rock (Cord McCoy/H5 Bucking Bulls) and Cerqueira went the distance on La Grande (Davis Rodeo Ranch).
Each cowboy left the sundrenched Southeastern Livestock Pavilion with 20 world points and $1,833.33.
Barbosa is now ranked No. 9 in the world, 109.67 points back of No. 1 Moreira, while Aparecido and Cerqueira are tied for No. 10, 110 points removed from the top spot.
The world’s top bulls didn’t exactly roll out the welcome carpet for two cowboys expected to vie for the PBR World Championship in the elite series season opener.
On Saturday afternoon, 2020 PBR World Champion Jose Vitor Leme (Ribas do Rio Pardo, Brazil) and two-time PBR World Champion Jess Lockwood (Volborg, Montana), both sustained potentially season-disrupting injuries.
With both athletes awaiting x-ray confirmation, Leme sustained an apparent right ankle fracture after bucking off Dirty Sancho (Blake Sharp/Koe Wetzel/High Voltage Cattle), while Lockwood is suspected to have a broken jaw when he collided with Detroit Lean’s (Blake Sharp) horn.
In the bull pen, Ridin Solo (Cord McCoy/Bill McCarty) is atop the leaderboard for the first YETI “Built for the Wild” Bull of the Event honor. The powerful bovine athlete was marked 46 points in the championship round when he dispatched Cerqueira in 4.89 seconds.
Fans can relive all the action from the opening competition of the 2021 season-launch Unleash The Beast event at 8:00 a.m. ET on Sunday, January 17 on RidePass at RidePass.com or via the RidePass mobile app.
PBR Unleash The Beast: American Roots Edition
PBR Monster Energy Invitational – Competition 1
Southeastern Livestock Pavilion – Ocala, Florida
Competition Leaders (Round 1-Round 2-Round 3-Round 4-Event Aggregate-Event Points)
- Mauricio Gulla Moreira, 86.75-89.75-0-0-176.50-130 Points.
- Cooper Davis, 85.25-87.5-0-0-172.75-76 Points.
- Cole Melancon, 87.25-0-0-0-87.25-60 Points.
- Kyler Oliver, 86.5-0-0-0-86.50-35 Points.
- Dener Barbosa, 86-0-0-0-86.00-20 Points.
(tie). Eduardo Aparecido, 86-0-0-0-86.00-20 Points.
(tie). Alex Cerqueira, 86-0-0-0-86.00-20 Points.
- Cody Teel, 85.5-0-0-0-85.50-14 Points.
- Keyshawn Whitehorse, 85-0-0-0-85.00-10 Points.
(tie). Marco Eguchi, 85-0-0-0-85.00-10 Points.
- Kaique Pacheco, 84.75-0-0-0-84.75-7 Points.
- Dakota Louis, 83.5-0-0-0-83.50-5 Points.
- Cannon Cravens, 81.75-0-0-0-81.75
- Lucas Divino, 81.25-0-0-0-81.25
Mason Taylor, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Dalton Kasel, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Derek Kolbaba, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Ezekiel Mitchell, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Brennon Eldred, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Tye Chandler, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Claudio Montanha Jr., 0-0-0-0-0.00
Jose Vitor Leme, 0-0-0-0-0.00
João Ricardo Vieira, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Jess Lockwood, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Silvano Alves, 0-0-0-0-0.00
J.B. Mauney, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Joao Henrique Lucas, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Taylor Toves, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Rafael Henrique dos Santos, 0-0-0-0-0.00
Bradley Brittain, 0-0-0-0-0.00
photos, courtesy Andy Watson/Bull Stock Media