The PBR Touring Pro Division Bull Riders made a stop at the Clovis Rodeo Grounds to officially kick off the Clovis Rodeo weekend on Thursday.
Claiming first place in the event and a $12,500 prize was No. 2 world ranked PBR rider Chase Outlaw.
After posting a score of 83.5 in his first ride, Outlaw, along with 11 other riders, clinched a spot in the championship short round. Outlaw would be the only rider to tally a score in the final round, earning the victory with a score of 89 on his second ride.
Outlaw said he was fortunate to ride the bull Scared Famous in the short round after getting a look at it before the contest began. He also discussed his success during the past year and his path back to riding after several injuries and facial reconstructive surgery.
“I’ve been through the wringer with injuries. But I haven’t lost my faith, and I haven’t let my foot off the gas. You’ve just got to take it one bull at a time,” Outlaw told the crowd. “This is my third year here in Clovis, and y’all are great fans, great community — put on a heck of a bull riding. And we’ll be back here next year.”
Outlaw was joined in the short round by Cannon Cravens, Cody Casper, Brennon Eldred, Daylon Swearingen, Lawson Nobbs, Matt Triplett, Juan Carlos Contreras, Thor Hoefer II, Tyler Harr, Mike Sparks and Josh Tucker.
Tucker, who is from Fresno, was a crowd favorite. And although he was unable to capitalize on his second ride, his berth in the short round gave the fans something to cheer about.
In between rides, PBR Entertainer Flint Rasmussen stole the show, keeping the audience engaged with his singing, dancing and banter throughout the night.
During one of the evening’s intermissions, last year’s rodeo queen, Kaitlyn DeMott took to the arena to pass on her title, as Lauryn Patterson was crowned the 2019 Clovis Rodeo Queen.
The crowd was also treated to the popular Mutton Busting event. The young cowboys and cowgirls riding in the event were Mason Menard, Michael Smith, Brock Bascherini, Payten Woods, Jett Barbo, Vivienne Duncan, Jaxon Norvell, Channing Carver, Thomas Sanchez Jr. and RaeLynn McConnel.
Bascherini took first in the contest with a score of 83 on his ride, earning him a custom belt buckle. McConnel earned a pair of Justin brand boots with a win in the Best Dressed contest as judged by the cheers of the crowd.
Following the evening’s competitions, country music fans headed to the floor of the arena for a performance by artist Russell Dickerson to conclude the evening’s events.
The Clovis Rodeo will continue with a full performance of events on Friday night and Saturday and Sunday afternoon.