World finals set for CBR

Rodeo athletes don’t enjoy much of an offseason.

Since Wesley Silcox won the bull riding title in last month’s National Finals Rodeo at the Thomas & Mack Center, the 22-year-old from Payson, Utah, has competed in a circuit finals rodeo and spent a week riding bulls in Australia.

Beginning today, he will be riding at the South Point in the $200,000 Championship Bull Riders world finals for the 2007 season.

Silcox is ranked 13th among the top 45 CBR riders and acknowledges it will be a long shot for him to catch points leader Pistol Robinson of Burleson, Texas. But last year’s top money winner in the two-day event made about $56,000, and that’s enough incentive for Silcox.

“There’s a chance I can catch Pistol. All I can do is go out and ride my bulls,” Silcox said.

This is the first time at an event that he can show off his Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association champion’s belt buckle. “I just got it in the mail two days ago,” he said Tuesday. “It’s got my name engraved on it. I started to wear it the day I got it.”

He won three NFR go-rounds and made money in seven of 10 go-rounds. He made $117,933 in the Finals and $228,942 in the PRCA season.

“It took a couple days for it to sink in that I am the world champion,” Silcox said. “I think about it every day. I just got on a hot streak and rode good at the right time.”

It was a monumental comeback from injuries — a concussion, broken jaw and fractured orbital bone — he suffered nine weeks before the NFR.

Silcox is one of six CBR finalists who competed in last year’s NFR. Former NFR qualifiers scheduled to ride tonight and Saturday are Jarrod Craig, Dave Samsel, Steve Woolsey, Jesse Bail, Jody Newberry, Howdy Cloud, Mike Moore, Zeb Lanham, Sonny Murphy and Zack Oates.

The event will start at 7 p.m. each day.

PBR — Three-time Professional Bull Riders champion Adrian Moraes is competing in his 15th and final year. The native of Sao Paulo, Brazil, will retire after this season.

Moraes, who will be 38 in April, won world titles in 1994, 2001 and 2006. He is ninth in points after five events. …

Nick Landreneau of Sulphur, La., won his first PBR Built Ford Tough event title Sunday in Sacramento, Calif., and made $30,180.

Contact reporter Jeff Wolf at jwolf@ or (702) 383-0247.


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