PBR Australia Bucking Bull of the Year contenders POA Fully Locked & Loaded and POA Palooka will spearhead the Dittmann Bucking Bulls attack as the team look to defend their home dirt on Saturday night at the 2019 Mackay Invitational.
The Bloomsbury based bull team have dominated the past two editions of the event with their bovine athletes recording four of the eight bull scores marked 44 points or higher in Mackay.
POA Fully Locked & Loaded has carried the past two winners to victory at Mackay, putting up scores of 45.0 and 44.5 points in the process. He combined with local cowboy Ryan Storey for a season-high 90.5 points for the win last season while Fraser Babbington was scored 89.5 points on his way to victory in 2017.
“We have done plenty of miles this year, but it’s always good to perform close to home,” said PBR Australia Stock Contractor Jason Dittmann.
“The bulls will enjoy the shorter trip in the truck, but in saying that, everywhere we have gone this season, we have been successful in the bull team competitions.”
It has been an outstanding 2019 season to date for Dittmann Bucking Bulls.
They put well over 10,000 kilometres on their truck during a seven-event run that involved multiple trips along the east coast of Australia. They hauled their squad as far south as Sydney, back north to Cairns, west to and Mount Isa before finishing back down in Newcastle.
Jason and his team were rewarded handsomely for their efforts. They won Champion Bull Team titles at three of the four Monster Energy Tour events they entered, picking up buckles in Sydney, Cairns and Newcastle.
“We are really proud of our bulls. To do that amount of miles, and for the bulls to perform the way that they did, you couldn’t ask for anymore,” said Dittmann passionately.
“We have put a lot of time and effort into the bulls, and at the end of the day, the trip really paid off.”
POA Fully Locked & Loaded and POA Palooka starred for the Paradise Outdoor Advertising All-Star Bull Team during the period, each collecting three high marked bull of the event awards.
Both Dittmann buckers have qualified to contend for the end of season bucking bull awards following their superb undefeated winter-runs.
“I would like to see Fully Locked & Loaded and Palooka go at it for Bucking Bull of the Year. They have been fighting it out for bull of the night at each event we have been to.”
“They are very even,” he added.
POA Fully Locked & Loaded leads all qualified stock in the champion bucking bull race with an average mark of 44.17 points from his six performances this season. The six-year-old produced the high-marked out of the night at the Touring Pro Division event in Rockhampton, PBR Origin in Sydney and at Last Cowboy Standing in Brisbane where the score came in at 45-points.
Veteran bull POA Palooka sits just behind his penmate in second place with a six-out average bull score of 44.00 points. He won his high-marked buckles at PBR Origin, the Newcastle Invitational and the Cairns Invitational where the judges awarded 45-points.
Dittmann says that he is excited about what looks to be an intriguing PBR Australia Bucking Bull of the Year competition.
“Most contractors have a contender or two this year. It’s wide open, and anyone can win it,” he added.
“I also have bulls like POA Lock n Load coming through, Cattle King Ted is right there, as is Cattle King Ray Ban. I think most of my bulls have a chance to win it.”
The Cattle King powered Ray Ban is also positioned well to contend for the top spot. He currently sits in eighth place among the qualified bulls, just over a point behind the leader on 43.00 points. In June, Ray Ban combined with NSW’s Nathan Burtenshaw for the season-high marked ride of 89.5-points in Round 2 at PBR Origin.
Dittmann has hauled just 15 buckers to PBR events this season with his bulls averaging an imposing 42.59-point bull score. It is a mark which sits well above the PBR Australia average of 41.43 points.
Half of those outs have come at the Monster Energy Tour level with the ten bulls hauled to the premier events posting an outstanding average bull score of 43.15 points.
“We have only been at this for a handful of years, but we do have 112 bulls at home, from weaners to the PBR bulls,” said Dittmann
“I can only cart ten bulls, and next year I am planning to start bringing some younger bulls through.”
“It’s going to be hard. You get attached to these bulls that continue to perform well and do their job, but at the same time, these younger bulls are coming on strong and they will be just as good, if not better.”
Dittmann Bucking Bulls trail TnR Bucking Bulls in the Stock Contractor of the Year race by just 805-points. However, with the Monster Energy Tour returning to southern New South Wales and Victoria to complete the 2019 season, a maiden contractor title appears out of reach.
“We don’t just go to events for the bulls, we go there for the friendships as well,” said Dittmann.
“It’s usually just myself and my neighbour Kerry Bentley in the truck, but this year we travelled alongside Peter Wallace from Wallace Bucking Bulls. Not just to try and keep the costs down but also to help each other out, and that definitely made the journey more enjoyable.”
“PBR Australia Stock Contractors are like one big family. Everyone is good mates and willing to help each other out in the back pens, and that’s what I like.”
“Everyone will jump in and help out, and that makes everything easier, and it keeps you wanting to go to the next event,” he added.
Following Mackay, Dittmann plans to keep his team at home to focus on keeping his pen primed for the concluding rounds of the Bucking Bull of the Year competition.
Dittmann Bucking Bulls will also look to win a second consecutive PBR Australia Grand Finals Bull Team Championship buckle when they head to Townsville in November.