The Chicago Invitational Gives Us The Second Event Champion Of The 2019 Season

As we look to begin the second event of the very early 2019 Professional Bull Riders Monster Energy Unleash The Beast season, not only the best bull riders in the world invade the Windy City but many of the best and iconic professional rodeo athletes came along for the ride as well.  Although the focus of the weekend would be that of the Chicago Invitational, the World Champions Rodeo Alliance (WCRA) would begin the history-making weekend inside of the Allstate Arena here in Chicago.

In one night of action, the WCRA awarded nearly one million dollars to some of the best that have ever graced the arena floors over the past several years.  In the bull riding side of things, it would be Derek Kolbaba that would manage to win the first-ever Windy City Round Up and collect an estimated 200 world title race points and $50,000 for his efforts while conquering two bulls in one night.


Usually, as the season begins, we are fortunate enough to be able to stay away from having to talk about injuries that may begin to play a part in how a bull riders season will end up but in the 2019 season that is far from the truth.  Coming into this weekend, Jose Vitor Leme was nursing a calf injury after aggravating it last weekend in New York City but he has said he has been doing therapy all week and his only concern is getting caught up in the chute.

Last night, Derek Kolbaba was victorious but paid a huge price for his efforts and was involved in an accident that left many wondering how he would fair over the two night of action here at the Chicago Invitational.  All of those questions and more will be answered over the next two nights as we look to crown a new 2019 PBR event champion!

Jess Lockwood Leaves The Allstate Arena With The Round One Win Photo Credit: Andy Watson / Bull Stock Media

Although the qualified ride totals in round one were not quite as many as what we were able to watch last weekend in New York City, the action down on the arena floor inside of the Allstate Arena still left the fans excited on a Saturday night.  One of the reasons may be what the riders had gone through just 24-hours ago but everyone knows you will never here a bull rider complain or make excuses but it clearly showed tonight how bad these top athletes are hurting already this season.

That being said, round one left us with seventeen qualified rides which leave a little wiggle room for those that did not make the eight here in round one to come back tomorrow night and right the wrongs that they suffered earlier tonight.  One of those cowboys that would manage to have a good start to the Chicago Invitational would be Jess Lockwood who would leave the Allstate Arena with the round win after riding TCB Ranch / K-C Bucking Bulls’ Show Me Homie to the tune of 88.50 points to head into round two in the number one spot!

Rubens Barbosa Earns The Round Two Win In Chicago Photo Credit: Andy Watson / Bull Stock Media

After another round last night where we were able to see a whopping seventeen qualified rides being made round two was going to be a major player on who would advance to the championship round and who would leave Chicago hoping for better results.  As the top bull riders in the world took center stage, it was apparent that the numbers we have seen, starting last weekend back in New York City, were not a figment of our imaginations as another nineteen riders were able to make it to the eight-second buzzer again here in round two.

Although the numbers were astounding, there was a Brazilian that would head into the championship round after slaying his bovine counterpart to earn the round two win.  Today that man would be Rubens Barbosa who needed a solid showing in Chicago to make sure his spot on the Unleash The Beast tour would be his for the foreseeable future!

Davis And Lockwood Leave All Others In The Dust While Splitting The Championship Round Win Photo Credit: Andy Watson / Bull Stock Media

Splitting The Championship Round

As we came into the championship round of the 2019 Chicago Invitational, we were witnessing some deja vu that we had seen just one week ago, where it was a major feat just to qualify for the final round with the amazing qualified ride totals we have been watching over the past two weekends.  Once the round began inside of the Allstate Arena, we could all feel that the momentum would be shifting quite rapidly back towards the bovine athletes’ direction as we watched some of the very best bucking bulls in the business take center stage to round out the weekend here in Chicago.

That being said, the top fifteen riders from the first two rounds did all the ould to hold on but only three would be able to do just that with all three of the qualified rides being over the 90 point mark. After all was said and done, two world champions, Jess Lockwood and Cooper Davis, would split the championship round win with amazing 90.50 point rides with Chase Outlaw continuing his historic comeback with a 90.25 point ride!

Round By Round Rides From The Windy City:

Round One:

Jess Lockwood (88.50)

Jose Vitor Leme (87.25)

Dakota Buttar, Cooper Davis & Chase Outlaw (87.00)

Koal Livingston (86.50)

Derek Kolbaba (86.00)

Colten Jesse (85.75)

Paulo Lima & Eduardo Aparecido (85.25)

Ryan Dirteater (85.00)

Tanner Byrne & Ramon de Lima (83.75)

Sean Willingham (83.50)

Cody Teel (82.50)

Claudio Montanha Jr. (81.50)

Marco Eguchi (76.25)


Round Two:

Rubens Barbosa (88.50)

Jess Lockwood (88.00)

Keyshawn Whitehorse, Marco Eguchi & Chase Outlaw (87.50)

Jose Vitor Leme (87.25)

Cody Jesus (87.00)

J.B. Mauney (86.75)

Tanner Byrne & Emilio Resende (86.00)

Koal Livingston (85.50)

Ramon de Lima (84.75)

Luciano De Castro (84.00)

Stetson Lawrence & Sean Willingham (83.75)

Joao Ricardo Vieira (83.50)

Derek Kolbaba (82.50)

Eduardo Aparecido (79.25)

Cooper Davis (70.75)


Championship Round:

Cooper Davis & Jess Lockwood (90.50)

Chase Outlaw (90.25)

Jess Lockwood Is The Chicago Invitational PBR Event Champion Photo Credit: Andy Watson / Bull Stock Media


Jess Lockwood Takes the Crown in Chicago

Following a grueling weekend in New York City that began the 2019 Professional Bull Riders Monster Energy Unleash The Beast tour, a few came into this weekend’s event in Chicago already banged up and bruised.  This weekend began with the WCRA Windy City Round Up in which Derek Kolbaba earned a $50,000 check, but that was just the start to an amazing weekend we were able to be a part of as the best bull riders in the world competed for an event win.  After all was said and done, Jess Lockwood would, once again, be the cowboy who would earn the event championship title at the second event of the young 2019 season.  He would be able to outlast all other competitors to go on a -for-3 run throughout the weekend, earning a total of 267 points and taking home the Chicago Invitational championship title.  Along with the title, he would earn 640 more world title race points, distancing himself even further in the number one position in the world standings and a cool $41,280.00 to line his jean pockets as we head down the road and invade Glendale, Arizona next weekend for the Ak-Chin Invitational Presented By Cooper Tires.

Closing Thoughts

After an exciting start to the 2019 Professional Bull Riders Monster Energy Unleash The Beast season we are already beginning to see some of the top bull riders in the world have a strong start and raise some eyebrows among those sitting with them in the locker room.  For the second weekend in a row, we have had much to cheer about while watching some of the best action we have seen in recent years during the start of a new PBR bull riding season.

Not only are some of the seasoned veterans showing off their skills but a few Unleash The Beast rookies are also showing everyone that they do, in fact, belong to share the stage with those that they have looked up to throughout the years in hopes of being able to compete in the same arena as them which has now made their dreams a reality!

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