Kasel’s victory at the 2023 season-launch Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour event propels him to No. 1 rank in series standings, 44 points ahead of No. 2 Alvaro Aguilar Alvarez
FORT WORTH, Texas – In front of a raucous, sold-out crowd at the iconic Cowtown Coliseum in Fort Worth, Texas, Saturday evening, Dalton Kasel (Muleshoe, Texas) went a perfect 2-for-2 to win the PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Ouncie Mitchell Memorial Invitational, the 2023 season-launch event for the Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour.
The Ouncie Mitchell Memorial Invitational was the third of three events held Saturday in benefit of Ouncie Mitchell’s young daughter A’nyla Allen. Mitchell, a PBR World Finals qualifier and long-time Velocity Tour rider, passed away in September.
The Austin Gamblers’ Kasel began the event in dominant fashion, delivering the first of 14 scores in the opening round of competition.
Tasked with Crossover (Shuler Bucking Bulls), Kasel conquered the powerful animal athlete for a monstrous 91 points, the first 90-point ride of the new season, as the crowd erupted in a deafening cheer.
As the last man out in the championship round courtesy of his Round 1 win, the Texan next climbed atop J&M’s Yukon (Hookin’ W Ranch). Remaining in perfect time with the bull, Kasel reached the whistle, marked 89 points to clinch the event victory.
The golden finish garnered Kasel 132 Velocity Tour points. He now leads the No. 2-ranked rider by 44 points.
Alvaro Alvarez Aguilar (La Punta Lagos Moreno Jal, Mexico) parlayed his own 2-for-2 effort into a runner-up finish, collecting 88 Velocity Tour points. Aguilar is now No. 2 in the early Velocity Tour standings.
Aguilar first put points on the board in Round 1 when he covered Pan Am (Hart Cattle Co./Hale) for 86.5 points.
Via the score, the Missouri Thunder rider punched his ticket to the championship round fifth on the event leaderboard.
For his final animal athlete counterpart, the surging Mexican prepared to go head-to-head with Latch Party (FAR Bucking Bulls/Gene Baker/Hookin’ W Ranch). In what proved a perfect pairing, Alvarez delivered his second score in as many attempts, awarded a championship round-best 89 points.
Third was the Arizona Ridge Riders’ Ross Freeman (Kountze, Texas).
After riding Whambam (Shuler Bucking Bulls) for 87 points in Round 1, Freeman bested Gangster Time (Classic Jack Cattle/Viducic Bucking Bulls) for a matching 87 points to earn the podium finish.
Freeman left Cowtown Coliseum having netted 69 Velocity Tour points. He is presently ranked No. 3 in the series standings, 63 points back of No. 1 Kasel.
As the final rider to go 2-for-2, Marcelo Procopio Pereira (Rinopolis, Brazil) was fourth, collecting 51 Velocity Tour points.
Pereira’s scores were earned atop Big Chew (Hillcrest Bulls/Gene Baker/Hookin’ W Ranch) for 86 points in Round 1 and Devaronian (Shuler Bucking Bulls) for 85.5 points in the championship round.
Rounding out the Top 5 in fifth was Manoelito de Souza Junior (Itamira, Brazil).
Souza’s effort was headlined by his 88.5-point ride on Bad Decisions (TNT Bucking Bulls/Hart Cattle Co.) in Round 1. He earned 35 Velocity Tour points.
The 2022 PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour season continues Jan. 6-7 in Lexington, Kentucky, and Jan. 7 in Portland, Oregon. Action for the PBR Lexington Invitational at Rupp Arena begins at 8 p.m. EST on Friday, April 6, and 7 p.m. EST on Saturday, January 7. The PBR ZipRecruiter Classic at Moda Center begins at 7:00 p.m. PST on Saturday, January 7.
Press release courtesy of @PBR. Photo credit Imagehounds™