Dakota Buttar was the lone Canadian at the Built Ford Tough Series opening event, covering his first two bulls over the three day event.
After riding his way to the 35th spot in the PBR World Standings with a commanding appearance at the 2016 BlueDEF Finals, Buttar admitted he was taken aback by the bright lights of Las Vegas at the PBR World Finals. He was unable to ride in the first four rounds, before outright taking home a massive cheque in the final day of that event.
“It was unexpected in Vegas that I squeaked in there,” Buttar told Everything Cowboy.
“Making it to the World Finals was pretty cool. I had never been to Vegas before, the bright lights were overwhelming for a little bit.”
Now, with the World Finals (and one other BFTS appearance) under his belt, he has drank the cool-aide and knows where he wants to spend his time.
“This is definitely where I want to be.”
In round 1, Buttar rode Mark Miller’s Sarge to an 83.5 score. In round two, he was able to match up with K-C Bucking Bulls’ Time Bomb, the same bull that got the better of him during the PBR World Finals fourth round.
“He was originally from Canada actually, and I remember him from back then too. He really bucked when he was in Canada. He definitely has a different bucking pattern,” Buttar said.
He took Sarge to an 83.5 score, while Time Bomb lost the second chance against Buttar, giving the Saskatchewan native an 83 score, setting him up for Sunday’s final round and short go.
In the third round, Buttar matched up with Buckin’ B Cattle Co’s Blue Duck. Buttar was unseated at 7.8 seconds adding that the bull is known to go to the right, but ended up turning left Sunday.
With enough points, however, Buttar was able to choose his bull for the short-go and picked a bull he has seen a lot of tape on.
“For the short round I ended up picking Stanley FatMax. I have seen a lot of that bull, lots on TV. I always wanted to get on him, I was happy with him for a pick,” Buttar said.
“Every time I see him he steps ahead and runs a guy back and pulls him down. He just got a ways ahead on me.”
With a strong showing in New York City, Buttar said that he is starting to get used to the Built Ford Tough Series.
“I wasn’t so wide eyed, I know a few guys here, I am getting used to it a bit more.”
The young cowboy is looking to keep gaining points to be able to stick to the BFTS Tour, but admitted he wants to get into a tougher regime of training now that he knows the challenges of the world’s toughest bull riding tour.
“I have to hit the gym a lot more. Since Edmonton and Regina, I hadn’t been on a bull since. I didn’t really do anything in December, just let the body relax and heal,” he said.
“I felt pretty good. I took a month off before CFR. I like taking breaks, I seem to do really well after a big break.”
With two Canadian Rodeo titles under his belt, Buttar hasn’t gotten to thinking about what is in store for the upcoming rodeo season in Canada, but said that with about $6,000 in earnings already under his belt for 2017 in the CPRA, and the final bull riding spot being filled at $14,000 he is already half way there.
“I haven’t thought a whole lot about that, but I definitely want to stay down here.”
With some time off ahead of next weekend’s BFTS event in Chicago, Illinois, Buttar will be doing some touring around New York City. He took his girlfriend Caitlin Brooks to the Empire State Building after the event Saturday and will be making his way to the 9/11 Memorial Sunday.
“There are so many buildings, they are all so high, nothing like being in Saskatchewan.”
Gene Owen/Jane Clark’s Hey Jack was named Top Bull after earning a 45.5-point bull score for tossing J.W. Harris in 2.85 seconds in the championship round.