After missing the first two PBR Australia Monster Energy events of the 2019 season through injury, Cliff Richardson (Gresford, NSW) returned in a big way to take out the Shepparton Invitational on Saturday night at the Shepparton Showgrounds.
Richardson was forced to miss the opening two events of the 2019 Monster Energy Tour after suffering a back injury at November’s PBR Australia Grand Finals where he finished runner-up in the PBR Australian National Championship race.
The 27-year-old won the buckle after scoring 82 points aboard On Parole (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls) in Round 1, followed by a round-high 87.5-point ride on Maximum Rat (George Hempenstall) in the Championship Round.
“It’s great to win down here”, “It was an awesome crowd,” Richardson said from the dirt after being presented as the Shepparton Invitational Champion on RidePass.
Richardson added 500 points to his season tally to move into fifth place on the 2019 PBR Australian Standings and collected $2,486.82.
2018 PBR Australian National Champion Aaron Kleier (Clermont, QLD) took home second place with his 2-for-2 performance. Kleier recorded an 83.5 ride aboard Red Man (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls) in the opening round before combining with Bad Apple (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls) for a further 84-points in the Final Round.
A total of 315 points moved the 21-year-old to the No. 1 spot on the PBR Australian Standings Leaderboard. Kleier also collected $1,805.50.
Brazilian rider Flávio Vinícius da Silva (Matão, Brazil) took out Round 1 with an 87-point ride on SweetPros Mystery (Kasper Bucking Bulls) before adding 80 gritty points in the Championship Round aboard Broken Halo (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls).
The 30-year-old banked $1,328.58 for his round win and third place finish and earned 330 points towards the Aussie Standings.
Finishing in fourth place was Lachlan Richardson (Gresford, NSW) who was the only other rider to finish the night 2-for-2.
The 26-year old got his night started with 81.5 points aboard Spokane (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls) and declined a re-ride option to keep his 75.5 points earned on the back of SweetPros Deceptacon (Kasper Bucking Bulls) in Round 2.
Rounding out the Top-5 at the Shepparton Invitational were Troy Wilkinson (Upper Horton, NSW), Tyler Morgan (Mt Morgan, QLD) and Merv Church (Rotorua, NZ) who all finished the event with 84.5 points on the leaderboard.
In the PBR World Standings, Aaron Kleier is the best placed Australian in 10th spot with Cliff Richardson moving up into 20th following his Shepparton Invitational win.
Hot Rock from Woodall Rodeo and SweetPros Mystery from Kasper Bucking Bulls shared the Bucking Bull of the event award with a mark of 43.5 points.
George Hempenstall took out the Shepparton Invitational Bull Team event.
The Monster Energy Tour now moves to down the road to Bendigo, Victoria where we will see another night of PBR Australia action on Saturday.
Stay tuned to RidetheRage.com for full coverage of everything PBR Australia.