The Morning Line - PBR Bendigo Invitational
By: Josh Hanson Saturday, March 2, 2019 @ 1:11 PM
- The Morning Line - PBR Bendigo Invitational
With the next stop on the PBR Australia Monster Energy Tour just an hour or so down the road from last weekend’s venue in Shepparton, riders will be looking to maintain their high riding percentage against the relatively similar bullpen contracted for this weekend's 2019 Bendigo Invitational.
Lachlan Richardson on Hazmat (Kasper Bucking Bulls)
Hazmat carried Joshua Jones to a tenth-place finish last week in Shepparton with an 81.5-point ride. The bull turned back to the right with plenty of speed, but it certainly wasn't his best trip. Richardson has ridden five straight bulls and rides at an outstanding success rate into his hand. He should be a massive favourite in this matchup, but if Hazmat brings his A-game, the odds move closer to a flip of the coin.
Lachlan Slade on Ransom 2 (John Gill & Sons)
Slade gets a chance at revenge after the bull won their matchup last season in Wodonga. Right-handers are four from seven against Ransom 2 who is a smart bull that mixes up the start of his trips before ending with a spin to the right, allowing riders to finish strong. If the right-handed Slade can stay in good shape until the bull makes his turn to the right, he should be there at the whistle.
Aaron Kleier on Feel The Fire (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls)
In five career outs, Feel The Fire has given up just one ride. That was to Kleier in Blackall last season for 83.5 points. The bull prefers a left-handed spin, but he can try to fake the rider out to the right, as he did to Troy Wilkinson in Adelaide. If he remains consistent, he looks to be one of the better draws in this round, and we could see Kleier finish towards the top of the results sheet.
Troy Wilkinson on Jack Hammer (Woodall Rodeo Co.)
Jack Hammer has not allowed a qualified ride in PBR Australia competition for 13months, but he has not faced a rider of Wilkinson's calibre in a long time. His regular trip is to turn back to the left with maximum effort. This pattern should suit the left-handed Wilkinson who has covered 50% of his bulls since returning from injury. He is also yet to finish outside of the top-10 at the four events he has entered in the 2019 season.
Cody Heffernan on Wild Paint (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls)
Wild Paint is unridden in three career outs and looks to be a bull that continues to improve each time he bucks. We saw him in the Adelaide where he produced a solid performance from the re-ride pen, and he backed that up with a 4.17 second, 43.5-point dispatch of Aaron Kleier a fortnight ago in Marrabel. He went to the left in Adelaide, and if he shows any further improvement, it could make things even tougher for the right-handed Heffernan.
Bailey Woodard on Hot Dots (Throsby & Russell Bucking Bulls)
Hot Dots has become a rider favourite with his consistent trips helping riders to two round wins and a further two Top 4 finishes from five outs over the past six months. He is always very fast and around to the right. The stat that is a worry for the left-handed Woodard, is that Hot Dots has allowed just one qualified ride to a leftie. That was to Aaron Kleier in Adelaide for 82.5-points. Woodard will need to hustle if he is to make the whistle here away from his hand.
Cliff Richardson on Earth Bound (John Gill & Sons)
Despite both rider and bull having quite a long career, this will be the first time that these two will match up in PBR Australia competition. Earth Bound has faced off against six riders over the past 12 months Fraser Babbington, Jose Vitor Leme (x2) and Cody Heffernan all making the whistle. He bucks at a good tempo and is usually to the left. Richardson was perfect last week with bulls both into and away from his hand so there is no reason why we shouldn't have him winning this bout.