Can an experienced and decorated New South Wales side defend their home dirt, or will a Queensland team loaded with youth and X-factor steal the prize?
Tonight we crown the Inaugural Monster Energy PBR Origin Champions!
Round 1 Matchups
Aaron Kleier on SweetPro’s Turn It Up (Kasper Bucking Bulls):
The 2018 PBR Australia Champion has been very consistent so far this season and has covered five of his last seven bulls. Kleier is quite good away from his hand, and he will need to be on his game here against Turn It Up who will turn back to the right. The bull has bucked off five straight riders, but the Queensland Captain will be his toughest opponent since the Sydney Global Cup.
Nathan Burtenshaw on On Point (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls):
Burtenshaw has bucked off his three bull since making his return from a broken collarbone at the Sydney Show, but he gets an excellent chance to snap the streak here. On Point bucked off both of his opponents at the Sydney Show but Justin Robards did cover him for 85 points on his way to winning at Traralgon. Expect the bull to turn back to the right and into Burtenshaw’s hand.
Cliff Richardson on Scene of the Crash (Wallace Bucking Bulls):
This is a rematch from the Rockhampton Touring Pro Division event in May last season where the bull won the battle in 7.18 seconds putting up a 41.5 point bull score. Despite a disappointing weekend at the Sydney Show event where he went 1-for-3, Richardson has still managed to increase his riding percentage over the last few months of competition, riding six of his last dozen bulls. Scene of the Crash has bucked off five straight cowboys since they switched him to the left-handed delivery. The change was made after he was covered twice in Mount Isa last season from the right chutes. Expect the pair to do battle into Richardson’s hand.
Mitchel Paton on Super Natural (Wallace Bucking Bulls):
This looks a dream draw for Paton, who has covered seven of his last eleven bovines. Super Natural will turn back to the right and into the Nebo cowboy’s hand. The bull has also been covered in three of his last four outs with scores in the mid-80 point range recorded.
Troy Wilkinson on Tuff Territory (Brandenburg Bucking Bulls):
Wilkinson has covered over 52% of his bulls so far this season, but Tuff Territory is one of the toughest bulls to draw in the opening two rounds of the event. Unridden in over 20 outs, he will turn back to the right. The pair have already met three times with the banteng bucker winning all three matchups.
Round 2 Matchups
Lawson Nobbs on Tough Task (Dunne Bulls):
Nobbs returned to PBR Australia competition a fortnight ago after spending much of the 2019 season campaigning in the USA. His 2-for-2 performance earned him the buckle in Rockhampton and made it three event wins worldwide for the year. Tough Task has been covered just once from his last five outs, and that was at the 2018 PBR Australia Grand Finals where Lane Mellers took the Round 2 win with an 87.25 point ride. These two should match up well with the bull around to the left and into the Moura cowboy’s hand.
Cody Heffernan on Coors Light (John Gill & Sons):
These two will go head to head for the fourth time in their careers with Coors Light winning two of those matchups. Heffernan was able to steal a qualified ride at Wodonga last year when the bull was not at his best, with the pair marked just 75.5 points. Last time Coors Light was ridden was at the Tamworth Iron Cowboy where Lucas Divino scored 86 points to progress into the final round. Heffernan has covered 10 of his last 12 bulls and will be hard to hold out here even with the bull turning back away from his hand.
Justin Robards on Ransom 2 (John Gill & Sons):
Robards has drawn very well here as he looks to bounce back here after bucking off his last three bulls heading into Saturday night. Ransom 2 has been ridden in five of his nine career outs and has become a rider favourite. Cody Heffernan took the round win in the Yass short-go aboard this bull after scoring 88.5 points. Ransom 2 turns back to the right and can reverse direction late in the ride.
Flávio Vinícius da Silva on Annihilation (Brandenburg Bucking Bulls):
Da Silva has bucked off all five of his bulls since going 2-for-2 at Traralgon in March, and I think this matchup will be a spectacular one to watch. Another one of the Brandenburg’s bantengs, Annihilation only knows one speed and that is flat out. He will turn back to the right and into da Silva’s hand. We last saw the bull ridden at the 2018 PBR Australia Grand Finals where Cliff Richardson won Round 4 with 87.75 points.
Joshua Jones on Ted (Dittmann Bucking Bulls):
Ted had been unridden in his ten career PBR outs until Jones got aboard a fortnight ago in Rockhampton. The pair combined for 84.5 points. It would not be a surprise if this matchup went the same way. Ted turns back to the left and has loads of hangtime in his action. Jones has ridden 100% of his long round bulls so far this season, so it is hard to bet against him here.