Joao Ricardo Vieira rides Dakota/Berger/Struve/Rosen's Cooper Tires Brown Sugar for 89.75 during the 15/15 Bucking Battle round of the Seattle Built Ford Tough Series PBR. Photo by Andy Watson.
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Joao Ricardo Vieira rides Dakota/Berger/Struve/Rosen's Cooper Tires Brown Sugar for 89.75 during the 15/15 Bucking Battle round of the Seattle Built Ford Tough Series PBR. Photo by Andy Watson.

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The Professional Bull Riders (PBR) is bringing its legendary bulls and riders to the Broadmoor World Arena Saturday and Sunday for the “Built Ford Tough Rumble in the Rockies.”

Bullriding entertains fans of all ages and backgrounds, but for those brand-new to the sport, it can be confusing to keep track of how each ride is scored. Here are a few riding and judging guidelines to keep in mind this weekend:

A cowboy must ride for eight seconds to earn a score. No more and no less. The clock starts when the bull’s shoulder or hip breaks the plane of the chute gate and it ends when the rider’s hand comes out of his rope – voluntarily or not.

Each ride is worth up to 100 points: 50 points for the bull and 50 points for the rider if he successfully rides the bull for 8 seconds.

Four judges award up to 25 points each to the rider and the bull. Those points are added together and divided in half to reach a score between 0 and 50 for the rider and the bull each. The rider and the bull’s scores are then combined to reach a final ride score between 0 and 100.

Any score over 90 points is considered a great ride – a “home run” of bull riding. The highest score ever earned in the PBR is 96.5, a feat accomplished by Bubba Dunn (1999), Chris Shivers (2000) and Michael Gaffney (2004).

WHAT TO LOOK FOR

A cowboy is judged on how well he matches the bull’s moves and maintains control of the ride. He must ride with one hand and is disqualified if he touches himself or the bull during the 8-second ride. Extra points may be awarded for style, such as spurring, which demonstrates a greater sense of control.

A bull is judged on his athleticism and difficulty to ride. This takes into account his spin (right or left), direction changes (movement forward and backward or side to side), kick in the back end, drop in the front and body rolls. A body roll occurs when a bull is in the air and kicks either his hind feet or all four feet to the side. The more of these characteristics a bull displays during a ride, the higher the degree of difficulty.

If the bull’s performance is sub-par (negatively affecting the ride score) or if a foul occurs during the ride – the rider is rubbed against the chute, the bull stumbles, the flank strap detaches, etc. – judges can offer the rider a chance to take a re-ride, allowing the rider a fair opportunity to achieve a competitive score.

BUILT FORD TOUGH EVENT SCORING

The 2015 PBR Built Ford Tough World Champion will be the rider who has accumulated the most points during the regular season and the Built Ford Tough World Finals. In 2015, the PBR unveiled a new point system that rewards bull riders who perform at the highest level both within individual events and throughout the season.

Riders earn points at Built Ford Tough Series events based on where they place in a round and the event average.

The first-place finisher of a BFTS round receives 100 event points. Riders placing second through fifth receive points on a graduated scale (60, 50, 40, 30). There will be three rounds in the Built Ford Tough Rumble in the Rockies brought to you by your local Ford Store and Sonic.

The first-place finisher in the event average, which is based on a rider’s total combined ride score from all the rounds, will receive 400 event points. Riders placing second through 15th receive points on a graduated scale (240, 180, 105, 65, 45, 20, 15, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10, 10).

The Top 15 riders with the highest-combined ride scores in Colorado Springs following Round 1 on Saturday and 2 on Sunday will advance to the Built Ford Tough Championship Round on Sunday afternoon where they will compete with one more bull at The Broadmoor World Arena.

The event winner of the Rumble in the Rockies is the bull rider who has earned the most event points throughout the weekend.

WHY POINTS MATTER

At the conclusion of the 2015 Built Ford Tough Series regular season, the Top 35 bull riders in the world standings will qualify for the 2015 PBR Built Ford Tough World Finals on Oct. 21-25 at the Thomas & Mack Center in Las Vegas.

The world standings are based off of the points earned at events on all tour levels of the PBR, the Built Ford Tough Series, the BlueDEF Velocity Tour and the Touring Pro Division, as well as on the PBR’s international tours in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico.

After the World Finals the man who has earned the most points throughout the entire season will win the coveted World Champion’s best buckle, a new Ford truck and a $1 million bonus, as well as the bragging rights as the best bull rider in the world.

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