Roy needs ride on rank bull to qualify

Canadian competing hard at PBR world finals

BY DWAYNE ERICKSON, FOR THE CALGARY HERALD OCTOBER 30, 2011

Aaron Roy needs a good ride on Sunday to hit the final at the Professional Bull Riders world finals.

Photograph by: Colleen De Neve, Calgary Herald

It was draft day at the Professional Bull Riders $2,2 million world finals at Las Vegas on Saturday,

The bull riders got to pick their poison.

As one of the leaders going into the fourth round, Canadian champion Aaron Roy had one of the first 10 picks.

He selected a bull he was familiar with, the only Canadian bull in the herd, the Girletz Brothers First Nation Sensation.

It didn’t work out for him.

The five-year-old black brockle-face jumped out, took two turns to the left and flung Roy to the ground. The clock said he lasted 2.39 seconds. In the bull riding game they have to get to eight for a qualified ride and a score.

Roy, the PBR’s Canadian champion, had ridden his two previous bulls and earned $17,500.

Now, he’s on the edge.

He goes into this afternoon’s closing action ninth in the aggregate with a total of 175.25 scoring points on two bulls.

Generally, the 15 finalists have to cover three bulls to qualify for today’s 15-man Championship round that follows the fifth round. What that means is Roy will have to ride his fifth bull today.

It won’t be easy; they trot out the rankest bulls the PBR has and whatever one he draws, he’ll have to cover.

The other Canadian in the 40-man field, Longview’s Tyler Thomson, finally went the full eight rounds on his bull, a tough left-spinning nut called Mad Max, for a score of 85.25 points.

But, it was well outside the top five money holes. Thomson was bucked off his first three bulls.

He’ll be out again today and will be gunning only for round money.

The Cinderella story of the finals is Florida bull rider, Caleb Sanderson, who won the first round.

He covered a white left-spinner for 87.50 points on Saturday night and is the only guy to post scores in all four rounds.

The third-year pro has chalked up 348.25 aggregate points and has everybody talking about him. Coming into the finals, he had ridden only 30% of his bulls during the regular season. In the only event of note, early in the year, he covered three of four bulls.

Texan Stormy Wing won Saturday night’s round with a score of 90.25 points. He’s 15th in the aggregate and will have to get something done today. A portion of today’s world finals will be carried on NBC starting at 2 p.m.

© Copyright (c) The Calgary Herald

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