Inaugural PBR Team Series Rider Draft Sets Core Lineups For Eight Founding Teams in New Bull Riding League

Two-time PBR World Champion Jose Vitor Leme is first athlete drafted, while blockbuster trade rocks round 2

ARLINGTON, Texas (May 24, 2022) — Eight founding teams in the new elite bull riding league beginning competition in July set their initial rosters Monday night at a wild inaugural PBR Team Series Draft, presented by ZipRecruiter, at Texas Live! in Arlington, Texas. 

The eight founding teams of the inaugural PBR Team Series – Austin Gamblers, Arizona Ridge Riders, Carolina Cowboys, Kansas City Outlaws, Missouri Thunder, Nashville Stampede, Oklahoma Freedom, and Texas Rattlers – participated in an initial five-round draft, beginning the process of selecting which riders will be competing on their respective teams when the PBR Teams season begins on July 25-26 at Cheyenne Frontier Days in Cheyenne, Wyoming.

Two-time PBR World Champion Jose Vitor Leme was the first rider chosen to compete in the new league, selected by the Austin Gamblers who had the No. 1 overall draft pick. The tough Brazilian walked gingerly to the stage at a packed Texas Live! with four broken ribs, 48 hours after a wreck at the 2022 PBR World Finals: Unleash The Beast also left him with a partially collapsed lung. 

In the draft’s second round, a blockbuster trade between the Texas Rattlers and Carolina Cowboys sent 2022 PBR World ChampionDaylon Swearingen (the Rattlers’ first pick, and third overall of the draft) and Mason Taylor (their second round selection, and 14thoverall pick) to the Carolina Cowboys in exchange for Cody Jesus(the Cowboys’ pick in round one, and 7th overall of the draft) andJoao Ricardo Vieira (the Cowboys’ second round pick, and 10thoverall of the draft). 

During the initial PBR Team Series Draft, carried on RIDEPASS on PlutoTV and the Cowboy Channel, teams were permitted to select up to five riders. The June 2 supplemental draft, comprised of riders declaring availability for fewer than 10 regular season events (but no fewer than five regular season events) and the championship event, will help teams fill their seven remaining protected roster positions. Any riders who declare for the draft and are not selected will be eligible for free agency.

When they begin their 10-event regular season, culminating in a Teams Championship in Las Vegas November 4-6, teams will have 10 riders in total, including seven “Protected Roster” riders and three “Practice Squad” developmental riders.

The bull riding games that make up the 11-event season will feature five-on-five, head-to-head competition between two teams. Each regular season event day will feature all teams in a game.

The inaugural draft order was determined by a lottery held on Jan. 7 in New York City. The 2022 draft order was:

1. Austin Gamblers
2. Nashville Stampede 
3. Ariat Texas Rattlers 
4. Kansas City Outlaws
5. Missouri Thunder 
6. Arizona Ridge Riders
7. Carolina Cowboys
8. Oklahoma Freedom  

Prior to the lottery draw, the PBR issued Draft guidelines which specified the two PBR-owned teams (Carolina Cowboys and Oklahoma Freedom) would select in the last two positions in the draft order, and, further, that the draft would be conducted in a “snake” format in which the first team to select in Round 1 would receive the last pick in Round 2 (i.e., Pick 16), the first pick in Round 3 (i.e., Pick 17), and so forth.

All PBR cardholders in good standing with the league were eligible for the 2022 PBR Team Series Draft through a draft declaration process that concluded May 6, 2022. Riders who declared for fewer than 10 events are eligible for the two-round supplemental draft on June 2.

Here is the full list of team Draft picks selected in the 2022 PBR Team Series inaugural draft.

Round 1 (Overall Picks 1-8)
1. Austin Gamblers – Jose Vitor Leme (RIbas do Rio Pardo, Brazil)
2. Nashville Stampede – Kaique Pacheco (Itatiba, Brazil)
3. Ariat Texas Rattlers – Daylon Swearingen (Piffard New York) 

(Note: Was later traded, along with Mason Taylor and the No. 26 overall pick during Round 2 to the Carolina Cowboys for Cody Jesus, Joao Ricardo Vieira and the No. 30 overall pick.)

4. Kansas City Outlaws – Dalton Kasel (Muleshoe, Texas)
5. Missouri Thunder – Colten Fritzlan (Rifle, Colorado)
6. Arizona Ridge Riders – Luciano De Castro (Guzolandia, Brazil)
7. Carolina Cowboys – Cody Jesus (Window Rock, Arizona) 

(Note: Was later traded along with Joao Ricardo Vieira and the No. 30 overall pick during Round 2 to the Texas Rattlers for Daylon Swearingen, Mason Taylor and the No. 26 overall pick.)

8. Oklahoma Freedom – Eli Vastbinder (Statesville, North Carolina)

Round 2 (Overall Picks 9-16)9. Oklahoma Freedom – Derek Kolbaba (Walla Walla, Washington)
10. Carolina Cowboys – Joao Ricardo Vieira (Itatinga, Brazil)

(Note: Was later traded along with Cody Jesus and the No. 30 overall pick during Round 2 to the Texas Rattlers for Daylon Swearingen, Mason Taylor and the No. 26 overall pick.)

11. Arizona Ridge Riders – Mauricio Moreira (Gaviao Peixoto, Brazil)
12. Missouri Thunder – Clayton Sellars (Fruitland Park, Florida)
13. Kansas City Outlaws – Kyler Oliver (Roy, Utah)
14. Ariat Texas Rattlers – Mason Taylor (Maypearl, Texas) 

(Note: Was later traded, along with Daylon Swearingen and the No. 26 overall pick during Round 2 to the Carolina Cowboys for Cody Jesus, Joao Ricardo Vieira and the No. 30 overall pick.)

15. Nashville Stampede – Dener Barbosa (Paulo de Faria, Brazil)
16. Austin Gamblers – Austin Richardson (Dallas, Texas)

Round 3 (Overall Picks 17-24)
17. Austin Gamblers – Lucas Divino (Nova Crixas, Brazil)
18. Nashville Stampede – Ryan Dirteater (Hulbert, Oklahoma) 

19. Ariat Texas Rattlers – Brady Oleson (Blackfoot, Idaho)
20. Kansas City Outlaws – Rafael Henrique dos Santos (Sebastianopolis, Brazil)
21. Missouri Thunder – Cody Teel (College Station, Texas)
22. Oklahoma Freedom – Chase Outlaw (Hamburg, Arkansas) 

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Arizona Ridge Riders. They traded their Round 3 and Round 4 draft picks to the Oklahoma Freedom.)

23. Carolina Cowboys – Boudreaux Campbell (Crockett, Texas)
24. Arizona Ridge Riders – Eduardo Aparecido (Gouvelandia, Brazil)

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Oklahoma Freedom. They traded their Round 3 and Round 4 draft picks to the Arizona Ridge Riders.)

Round 4 (Overall Picks 25-32)

25. Arizona Ridge Riders – Chase Dougherty (Decatur, Texas)

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Oklahoma Freedom. They traded their Round 3 and Round 4 draft picks to the Arizona Ridge Riders.)

26. Ariat Texas Rattlers – Brady Fielder (Clermont, Queensland, Australia)

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Carolina Cowboys and was exchanged as part of their Round 2 trade with the Ariat Texas Rattlers.)

27. Oklahoma Freedom – Briggs Madsen (Tremonton, Utah)

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Arizona Ridge Riders. They traded their Round 3 and Round 4 draft picks to the Oklahoma Freedom.)

28. Missouri Thunder– Andrew Alvidrez (Seminole, Texas)
29. Kansas City Outlaws – Bob Mitchell (Steelville, Missouri)
30. Carolina Cowboys – Ramon de Lima (Rio Branco, Brazil)

(Note: This pick was originally held by the Ariat Texas Rattlers and was exchanged as part of their Round 2 trade with the Carolina Cowboys.)

31. Nashville Stampede – Manoelito de Souza Jr. (Itamira, Brazil)32. Austin Gamblers – Claudio Montanha Jr. (Pacembu, Brazil)

Round 5 (Overall Picks 33-40)

33. Austin Gamblers – Conner Halverson (Gordon, Nebraska)
34. Nashville Stampede – Joao Henrique Lucas (Bastos, Brazil)
35. Ariat Texas Rattlers – JC Mortensen (Chino Valley, Arizona)
36. Kansas City Outlaws – Tate Pollmeier (Fort Scott, Kansas)
37. Missouri Thunder – Jesse Petri (Dublin, Texas)
38. Arizona Ridge Riders – Marco Eguchi (Poa, Brazil)
39. Carolina Cowboys – Cannon Cravens (Porum, Oklahoma)
40. Oklahoma Freedom – Caden Bunch (Tahlequah, Oklahoma)

Here are the initial five-rider rosters per team:

Austin Gamblers:

Jose Vitor Leme, Austin Richardson, Lucas Divino, Claudio Montana Jr., Conner Halverson

Nashville Stampede:

Kaique Pacheco, Dener Barbosa, Ryan Dirteater, Manoelito de Souza Jr., Joao Henrique Luca

Ariat Texas Rattlers:

Cody Jesus, Joao Ricardo Vieira, Brady Oleson, Brady Fielder, JC Mortensen

Kansas City Outlaws:

Dalton Kasel, Kyler Oliver, Rafael Henrique dos Santos, Bob Mitchell, Tate Pollmeier

Missouri Thunder:

Colten Fritzlan, Clayton Sellars, Cody Teel, Andrew Alvidrez, Jesse Petri

Arizona Ridge Riders

Luciano De Castro, Mauricio Moreira, Eduardo Aparecido, Chase Dougherty, Marco Eguchi

Carolina Cowboys:

Daylon Swearingen, Mason Taylor, Boudreaux Campbell, Ramon de Lima, Cannon Cravens

Oklahoma Freedom: 

Eli Vastbinder, Derek Kolbaba, Chase Outlaw, Briggs Madsen, Caden Bunch

About PBR (Professional Bull Riders):

PBR is the world’s premier bull riding organization. More than 500 bull riders compete in more than 200 events annually across the televised PBR Unleash The Beast tour (UTB), which features the top 35 bull riders in the world; the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT); the PBR Touring Pro Division (TPD); and the PBR’s international circuits in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico. In June 2022, PBR will launch PBR Team Series – eight teams of the world’s best bull riders competing for a new championship. The organization’s digital assets include PBR RidePass on Pluto TV, which is home to Western sports. PBR is a subsidiary of IMG, a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media. For more information, visit PBR.com, or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at Twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube atYouTube.com/PBR.

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