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Big Sky PBR named PBR Event of the Year

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Big Sky event collects eighth consecutive title at World Finals in Vegas

By Mira Brody EBS STAFF

LAS VEGAS – For the eighth year running, the Big Sky PBR brought home hardware from the PBR’s Heroes & Legends dinner and awards ceremony on Nov. 2. The event kicked off the PBR World Finals, and concluded what PBR is calling the “greatest single season in league history.”

“Just to be in a room full of Western sports legends and to have Big Sky recognized on the same platform as them is really humbling,” said Eric Ladd, chairman of Outlaw Partners, co-producer of Big Sky PBR. “It truly was a Heroes and Legends dinner and to be considered in a room full of people who have devoted themselves to the Western sports lifestyle is really a testament to all the work that [the Outlaw Partners] team has put into this event.”

Big Sky PBR is co-produced by Outlaw Partners and Freestone Productions and hosted each year in the Big Sky Events Arena in Big Sky Town Center. Built from the sagebrush up, the event has brought crowds to their feet under the backdrop of Lone Mountain, this summer celebrating its 10th year with Big Sky’s Biggest Week—10 days of bull riding, live music, heated mutton bustin’ competition and a crowd-surfing Flint Rasmussen.

EBS Publisher Outlaw Partners won PBR Event of the Year for the eighth consecutive year. The crew received the award at the Heroes & Legends dinner and awards ceremony on Nov. 2 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

L-R: Outlaw CEO Megan Paulson; Outlaw Publisher Eric Ladd; Freestone Productions’ Andy Watson; Outlaw Media and Events Director Ersin Ozer; and Freestone Productions’ Jacey Watson. OUTLAW PARTNERS PHOTO

The Event of the Year distinction is decided by the 35 top-ranked bull riders in the world at the World Finals event, which spanned Wednesday, Nov. 3 through Sunday, Nov. 7 at the T-Mobile Arena. Former professional bull rider and current bull owner Cord McCoy calls this year’s event finals “one of the best ever.”

On Sunday, World Champion rider Jose Vitor Leme, and five-year-old bull Woopaa of Barker Bulls/Hookin’ W Ranch, proved a powerhouse of a match-up. Vitor Leme came out on top with a 98.75-point ride, shattering the previous high-score record of 96.5 points. This is the second year Leme, from Ribas do Rio Pardo, Brazil, has claimed the World Champion title. During the ride, Leme was in recovery from painful groin and abdominal injuries to boot.

Four bulls owned by Outlaw, McCoy and other Big Sky partners made it to the World Finals this year: Viper, Midnight Rock, Cliffhanger and Outlaw—Cliffhanger snagged the highest-scoring ride of the bulls during Sunday’s event.

“You can feel it,” said McCoy. “As much as you don’t think the fans have a lot to do with it, I think it encourages not only the bull riders, but it encourages the bulls. You can feel the intensity at the event. You can blow as many fireworks or turn the music up as loud as you want, but when you feel the crowd, it really makes a difference.”

The Event of the Year acknowledgment will inspire Outlaw to continue to grow the community event in future years, says Ladd. Big Sky PBR will return July 22-24, 2022, preceded by another series of Big Sky’s Biggest Week. Ticket information will be released soon.

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