PBR Teams Regular-Season Champions title to be decided on final day of PBR Rattler Days, as Kansas City Outlaws remain in the hunt courtesy of their win against Missouri, coupled with Austin’s defeat
FORT WORTH, Texas – The hometown Texas Rattlers continued to ride lights out Saturday evening as PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Camping World Team Series competition continued in Fort Worth, Texas. The Rattlers trounced their in-state rivals and league No. 1 Austin Gamblers by two ride scores to improve to a perfect 2-0 at their Rattler Days, presented by Ariat, homestand.
The Rattlers’ victory, paired with the Kansas City Outlaws’ win tonight over the Missouri Thunder, means the 2023 regular-season championship will go down to the final day of the season tomorrow in Dickies Arena prior to the 2023 PBR Teams Championship in Las Vegas (Oct. 20-22).
The Rattlers set the tone for the game early and never looked back. Texas pulled to an early lead in the bottom of the first, compliments of an 88.25-point ride from Joao Ricardo Vieira. The Rattlers’ early success, coupled with four consecutive buckoffs by Austin, gave Texas the chance to clinch the game win early in the bottom of the fourth. Delivering for his team, Braidy Randolph covered Centerfold for 83.5 points to cement the upset win.
Austin prevented a shutout in the top of the fifth when closer Jose Vitor Leme rode Outlaw for 89.25 points. While the score was not enough to reverse the outcome of the game, it did provide the two-time PBR World Champion with crucial points in the 2023 PBR Teams MVP race, extending his lead over No. 2 Cassio Dias to 172.25 points as he attempts to win the individual title in consecutive seasons.
The Rattlers added one more score to their tally, an 88.5-point score from Brady Oleson atop Smooth Over It, to ultimately defeat their instate rivals by 171 points, 260.25-89.25.
Texas is now not only a perfect 2-0 at their homestand, but they are a flawless 5-0 since making their debut inside Dickies Arena in October 2022. Improving to 15-12 this season, the Rattlers will look to complete their perfect sweep of their homestand on Championship Sunday when they play the league’s reigning Champion Nashville Stampede, who also enter Sunday’s matchup 2-0 in Fort Worth.
The Austin loss, coupled with a win earlier in the evening by the Kansas City Outlaws, kept the race for the regular-season Championship alive.<
The game prior to the Lone Star State Showdown, Kansas City beat the Missouri Thunder in their own in-state rivalry contest in walk-off form by 85 points to clinch a first-round bye in the 2023 PBR Teams Championship this October.
In their five-on-five showdown, Kansas City claimed an early 87.25-point lead in the bottom of the first, compliments of an 87.25-point ride atop Rank Frank by team newcomer Sandro Batista, now 4-for-5 with the Outlaws. Missouri, however, quickly tied the game in the top of the second, as Briggs Madsen logged a matching 87.25-point effort aboard The Maverick.
The Outlaws retook the lead in the top of the second via an 84.25-point score from 2022 PBR Rookie of the Year Bob Mitchell. With neither team converting in the third or fourth, Missouri closer Kade Madsen delivered in a must-ride position in the top of the fifth, keeping his team’s hopes of victory alive when he covered Electric Avenue for 87.75 points. Via the score, Kansas City trailed by 3.5 points as their closer Dias settled in aboard Pickle Moonshine. Dias rode the powerful animal athlete with ease, reaching the requisite 8 for 88.5 points to walk off with the win, 260-175.
Before PBR Rattler Days began, Austin needed just one win or one Kansas City loss to clinch the title. Kansas City, meanwhile, needed to win out and Austin to be shut out to complete their come-from-behind surge for the No. 1 rank at the end of the 10-event regular season. With two games now complete, Austin is 0-2 and Kansas City is 2-0, keeping the fate of the regular-season Championship still undetermined.
After starting the 2023 season 13-1, the Gamblers then went 5-8, losing four of their last five games.
The regular-season title will be decided on Championship Sunday when Kansas City, now 17-10 this season, plays the Oklahoma Freedom and the Austin Gamblers, now 18-9 in 2023, take on the Missouri Thunder.
PBR Rattler Days began with a showdown between the Nashville Stampede and Carolina Cowboys. Compliments of key scores from Kaiden Loud and Silvano Alves, the Stampede won by 89.5 points, 174-84.5. The red-hot momentum has propelled Nashville to a perfect 2-0 at PBR Rattler Days and 11-16 this season ahead of their Championship Sunday showdown against the host Texas Rattlers.
Carolina slipped to 1-1 in Fort Worth and are now a matching 11-16 this season. They conclude the regular season for the 2023 PBR Camping World Team Series with a game against the Arizona Ridge Riders.
The Oklahoma Freedom rebounded from an opening night loss on Saturday by beating the Arizona Ridge Riders in walk-off form. Trailing by 76.25 points in the bottom of the fifth, Freedom closer Caden Bunch carried his team to victory with a crucial 86.5-point ride atop Ink Spot.
Oklahoma is now 1-1 at the regular-season finale and 14-13 this season, while Arizona is 0-2 in Texas and 12-15 in 2023.
PBR Rattler Days, presented by Ariat, concludes Sunday, Oct. 7, at 1:45 p.m. CDT. Tickets for the crucial, final 2023 PBR Camping World Team Series regular-season event are still available and start at $22; taxes and fees not included. They can be purchased online at TicketMaster.com and PBR.com, at the Dickies Arena Box Office, or by calling PBR customer service at 1-800-732-1727.
Before the bucking begins, the Rattler Days Fan Festival, featuring music, games, vendor activations and more, outside Dickies Arena at Simmons Bank Plaza will open at 11 a.m. CDT. Programming will be headlined by Cowboy Church, as led by LeAnn Hart Ministries, at 11 a.m. CDT.
PBR RidePass on Pluto TV will offer replays of all the PBR Teams Camping World Series action from Fort Worth, Texas. Check https://pluto.tv/en/live-tv/pbr-ridepass for the latest programming schedule.