For the first time in league history, PBR’s (Professional Bull Riders) elite Unleash The Beast will travel to Newark, New Jersey, welcoming fans to Prudential Center on September 18-19 for the fan-attended PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational.
While the event will mark the PBR premier series’ debut in Newark, the Garden State city is no stranger to PBR action. In 2014, Newark hosted a stop for the Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour, with Rowdy Rice (Easly, South Carolina) capturing the event win.
Positioned in the second half of the 2021 season, the PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational is crucial in the championship race to the PBR World Finals in early November, awarding a gold buckle and million-dollar bonus to the world’s best bull rider.
With 21 Unleash The Beast events already complete, the race for the 2021 PBR World Championship is unfurling in historic fashion.
Attempting to become just the second back-to-back World Champion in league history, current world No. 1 Jose Vitor Leme (Ribas do Rio Pardo, Brazil) is amidst a season for the ages.
In late July, Leme shattered the league’s all-time high-marked ride record when he covered Woopaa (Barker Bulls/Hookin’ W Ranch) for 97.75 points. The league’s previous high score was 96.5 points, achieved four times. In a nearly flawless display of athleticism, Leme was marked a near-perfect 49.75 points out of a possible 50 points, the highest ever awarded to a rider in the sport, while Woopaa contributed 48 points, the 10th highest bull score in the league’s history.
A few short weeks later, Leme made further league history when he set a new season record for 90-point rides. Recording his 17th and 18th 90-point rides of the season in Nashville, Leme surpassed previous record holder 1999 PBR World Champion Cody Hart(Gainesville, Texas) for most 90-point rides in a season.
Leme, however, isn’t the only rider seeking his second gold buckle in 2021, leading No. 2 Kaique Pacheco (Itatiba, Brazil) by 519.5 points, and No. 3 Cooper Davis (Jasper, Texas) by 615.5 points.
This season’s current top three riders – 2020 PBR World Champion Leme, 2018 PBR World Champion Pacheco and 2016 World Champion Davis – are all attempting to become just the seventh rider in league history to have won the coveted gold buckle in multiple seasons.
In addition to Leme, Pacheco and Davis, event-goers to the PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational in Newark can anticipate watching one rider with ties to the tristate area competing inside the home of the NHL’s New Jersey Devils.
Hailing from Piffard, New York, Daylon Swearingen has been electric at PBR events since making his league debut in 2018. A two-time PBR World Finals qualifier, 2019 PBR Canada Champion Swearingen finished a career-best No. 9 in the world in 2020, logging his first Unleash The Beast victory in Chicago, Illinois.
The 21-year-old young gun began his 2021 season in early June after being sidelined at the conclusion of 2020 due to hip and shoulder surgery.
The bull riding action for the PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational begins with Round 1 at 6:45 p.m. EDT on Saturday, September 18, concluding with Round 2 and the championship round at 1:45 p.m. EDT on Sunday, September 19. All 30 bull riders will get on one bull each in Round 1 and 2. Following Round 2 on Sunday afternoon, the riders’ individual two-round scores will be totaled with the Top 12 advancing to the championship round for one more out and a chance at the event title.
Tickets for the two-day event are on sale now, and start at $15, taxes and fees not included. They can be purchased at the Prudential Center Box Office, online at Ticketmaster.com and PBR.com, or by calling PBR customer service at 1-800-732-1727.
PBR Elite Seats are available for avid fans who want an exclusive VIP experience while enjoying the world’s top bull riding circuit. These tickets offer premium seats, a question and answer presentation with some of the top bull riders and stock contractors in the world, behind-the-scenes look at the event from the back of the bucking chutes, and souvenir credential and lanyard.
For an enhanced PBR experience, fans can now purchase add-on PBR Premium Experiences which will include the Elite Experience on both Saturday, September 18 and Sunday, September 19.
The Elite Experience, available for $75, will include a Q&A session with a select group of the league’s top riders, bullfighters and stock contractors, exclusive merchandise item, arena concession voucher and commemorative lanyard.
For more information on PBR Premium Experiences and to purchase the Elite Experience for the PBR ZipRecruiter Invitational in New Jersey visit https://pbr.com/tickets/premium-experiences/.
PBR is the world’s premier bull riding organization. More than 500 bull riders compete in more than 200 events annually across the televised PBR Unleash The Beast tour (UTB), which features the top 35 bull riders in the world; the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT); the PBR Touring Pro Division (TPD); and the PBR’s international circuits in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico. PBR’s digital assets include PBR RidePass on Pluto TV, which is home to Western sports. PBR is a subsidiary of IMG, a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media. For more information, visit PBR.com, or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at Twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube at YouTube.com/PBR.