It’s a tale of two professional bull riders. One is 22-years-old and vying for his first world title. The other already won a title in 2008 and, at 36, announced he will retire at the end of the 2018 season.
Second-year rider Jose Vitor Leme established himself as a legit contender by winning this past weekend’s elite televised PBR event, in Tulsa, Oklahoma, and moved from sixth to third place in the world standings.
Though not unexpected, Guilherme Marchi surprised the PBR community with the timing of his announcement. Both are from Brazil. And both are members of the Monster Energy team.
After seeing Leme dominate the competition – man and beast – two-time World Champion Justin McBride described Leme as “the most exciting guy to watch on tour right now.” McBride credited Leme’s aggressive style as a rider.
“He gets every point out of a bull,” McBride said.
Leme started the event, which was the first elite event since early May, with a solid 88.5-point effort on Finding Jesus in Saturday night’s opening round of competition.
He followed up with 86 points on Wound Up in Round 2, which earned him the first pick in the bull draft for the Championship Round. He selected Bottoms Up — a bull he previously scored 90 points on at a WRCA event in Las Vegas. This time he was 90.5 points for the win.