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No Bull at Anaheim’s Honda Center
Written by Zachary Fenell   
Thursday, 19 January 2012 20:25
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“What bull!” “Talk about some bull.” These and other similar thoughts probably crossed the minds of a few PBR (Professional Bull Riders) riders Saturday, January 14th and Sunday, January 15th at Anaheim’s Honda Center as competitors dusted dirt off their clothes after getting bested by some intense beasts. All bull puns aside, the PBR riders truly gave the Honda Center crowd a greater appreciation for bull riding. The toughness the riders displayed ranks right up with, if not higher than, the hardest hitting football players and most threatening MMA fighters.  

Anyone sane who witnesses the forcefulness the bulls demonstrate when released from their pens develops an almost instantaneous respect for PBR riders. Perhaps nothing showcases the incredible challenge bull riding provides better than this past weekend’s Anaheim Invitational performances. Over half the riders failed to last the eight seconds required for scoring. Even the weekend’s top competitors didn’t prove immune to the sport’s danger. One finalist found himself needing medical attention following a bull flinging him into a nearby guardrail.

While others struggled, Guilherme Marchi reigned supreme walking away from PBR’s Anaheim Invitational the winner. Certainly familiar with success Marchi won the PBR World Championship in 2008. Marchi’s first place performance in Anaheim moves him to third in the current BFTS (Built Ford Tough Series) rankings. Austin Meier who put up a great effort and finished a close second this past weekend progressed in the BFTS rankings to fifth. The Built Ford Tough Series will travel across the country and continue until the culmination Tuesday, October 24th through Saturday, October 28th when Las Vegas, NV hosts the series finals.

A look at PBR’s history reveals passion fuels the sport. 19 years ago 20 passionate bull riders took a calculated risk and left the rodeo to form PBR. Given bull riding’s immense popularity within the rodeo the group decided to start the organization so they could spotlight the sport. Reflecting back on the Anaheim Invitational last weekend goes to show those 20 pioneering bull riders made an excellent choice. Sure, mounting an angry 2000 pound bull seems crazy but who says crazy has to be a bad thing?   

 

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