We are just a few hours away from show time at the 2019 Shepparton Invitational, so it is time to lock in my picks for the PBR Australia Monster Energy Tour event.
I will side with Cody Heffernan to take out the 2019 Shepparton Invitational. He was outstanding here last year and enters this event in good form off the back of a solid performance at the PBR Global Cup in Texas a fortnight ago.
The 29-year-old has drawn Lost Signal (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls) in Round 1, and this will be the second time these two have matched up. Heffernan won their first meeting at the PBR Global Cup in Sydney last year with an 83.5 point ride, but the bull can be much better than he was that night.
Right-handed riders have a 6-for-8 record against Lost Signal with the average ride score coming out just shy of the 84-point mark.
Higher ranked riders tend to be a point or two above the average mark, and I think Lost Signal can put Heffernan into a strong position heading into the Championship Round.
View the full 2019 Shepparton Invitational Daysheet.
Another matchup that I like in Round 1 is Aaron Kleier on Red Man (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls).
Kleier got the better of Red Man last season in Newcastle with 83-points awarded. Red Man doesn’t necessarily have a regular trip, but he does buck at an even tempo, and Kleier seems to make light work of this kind of bull.
I am confident that the 20-year-old will be there at the whistle, just unsure how high the score will be.
Troy Wilkinson looks to have drawn well to add another strong finish to his record since he returned from injury in December.
The 28-year-old has drawn YTB (Woodall Rodeo Co) who has given up two qualified rides from his three outs in his short career.
YTB will turn back to the right and away from Wilkinson’s hand, but if he can make it into the spin than the 2017 Aussie Champ should be able to finish the ride off strong and get a score on the board.
Tune in from 6:00 pm AEST for Live Coverage of the 2019 Shepparton