Reigning two-time world champion José Vitor Leme is a student of the game when it comes to drafts and internal medication.
Leme knows he has to be careful not to set up a trap before a lift and set himself up for failure, but the 25-year-old says an integral part of his pre-ride routine is being prepared to fantasize about what a charge will be like in his mind.
When you see some bulls, you like to know how to ride them,” Leme said. “Every elevator, I have a plan. I watch videos and fantasize about how I would ride it. From time to time they behave differently, but when they do, I make sure to stay focused.
Leme heads into next weekend’s First PREMIER Bank PREMIER Bankcard Invitational15/15 Bucking Battle fifth in the world rankings and has a rematch against JAG Essence Grand Theft (10-4, UTB).
15/15 Bucking Battle Competitions (Sunday CBS Noon ET)
Austin Richardson vs. Great Scourge (3-0, UTB)
. Derek Kolbabavs.US Border Patrol (9-0, UTB)
. Chase Doughertyvs. Ribbon (10-3, UTB)$
. Eduardo Aparecidovs. I’m legit, too (36-15, UTB) *
. Mason Taylor’s. Moonlight Party (5-3, UTB)
. Kaique Pachecovs. Cool Cowboy (1-0, UTB)
. Eli Vastbinder vs. Kingdom (2-0, UTB)
. Denver Barbosavs. Juju (6-4, UTB)
. Dalton Kaselvs. homebrew (11-3, UTB)
. Lucian of Castro vs. Driving test (8-1, UTB) *
. Jose Vitor Lemevs. JAG Essence Grand Theft (10-4, UTB)$
. Kyler Oliver vs. Chiseled (28-15, UTB)
. Mauricio Moreiravs. Alakazam (3-0, UTB)
. Daylon Swearingen vs. Woopaa (12-11, UTB) *
. Joao Ricardo Vieiravs. Rough (4-0, UTB)
. Bull has preliminarily pushed the Rider
$ Rider has successfully ridden the bull preliminarily
The sixth-time pro preliminarily rode Grand Theft to a season-high 92 points last month in Milwaukee at the PBR Ariat Invitational after taking the bull with the sixth-round crown draft pick.
Leme is 317.5 points behind the world no. 1 Joao Ricardo Vieira as he attempts to become the first rider in PBR history to win three consecutive PBR World Crowns. Leme is currently at a 1 in 7 symptomatic depression in his last two events.
Sioux Falls is one of six regular-season events before the 2022 PBR World Trials on May 13-22 in Fort Worth, Texas, and Leme still has time to make up the gap.
Vieira has drawn with Brusta (4-0, UTB) for the Bucking Battle on 15/15.
Grand Theft may be ranked 16th in the 2022 YETI World Champion Sire Rankings (44.5 World Champion sire average). Still, PBR herd manager and Ariat Texas Rattlers head trainer Cody Lambert believes that Grand Theft deserves to be in the top league of bovine athletes.
“I guess the judges have got it wrong all along,” Lambert said last week during the PBR Team Series Combine in Pueblo, Colorado. “I guess Grand Theft is the staleest bull out there. The only boys (in turn) who have ridden it are José and Joao. That’s my No though, if I were picking the rankest bull. 1 bull.”
Two weeks ago, Vieira recently rode Grand Theft to his final 91-point refusal to win the PBR Caterpillar Classic, presented by Union Home Mortgage in Kansas City, Missouri.
Also, in Sioux Falls, reigning YETI World Champion sire Woopaa (average world champion sires of 46.13) will compete for the ninth time this season. The 6-year-old bovine ranks opposite No. 2 Daylon Swearingen. Woopra defeated Swearingen in three seconds last time in the PBR world trials when he unexpectedly went right.
Vieira rode Woopaa for 94.25 points last weekend in Albuquerque, New Mexico, taking Swearingen’s crown of the event. Woopra earned 45.75 points for the rejection after preliminarily earning 45.5 points two nights earlier for his alternate backoff of 2.89 from Mason Taylor.
The 2022 YETI World Champion Sire will be the beast with the highest average sire score from his top six regular-season starts, and two PBR World Trial starts. Woopra needs to score 45.75 points or advance with Swearingen to increase his World Champion Sioux Falls average.
Woopra and Ridin Solo are amazing, and Woopra is still my favorite out of those two, but Ridin Solo is no slouch, said Lambert.