RENO, Nev. (MyNews4.com & KRNV) -- It didn’t start out well at all for 21-year-old Reid Barker on Thursday night in front of a whopping 8,100 fans at the Reno-Tahoe Xtreme Bulls event.
With a $50,000 purse up for grabs, the event fielded the top 40 bull riders in the world. It was the fifth stop on the PRCA’s Xtreme Bulls Tour, which has nine remaining events including its Tour Finale in Ellensburg, Wash., on Aug. 30.
“I had let a choice word slip while I was getting ready to ride my first bull, and they thought I said, ‘Let him out,’” Barker said. “So they threw the chute gate open.”
The ride didn’t go well. But fair is fair and Barker got another chance. This time, he nodded his head and put up 86.5 points on Growney’s SFB to place second in the round. Nineteen-year-old Brennan Eldred out of Oklahoma won the first round with an 88-point ride.
“It played out just right,” Barker said. “He came right into my hand off to the right. My mindset going into the short round was just ‘focus.’”
The first two riders in the finals posted spectacular rides, but Barker alone mustered 75 points on a second bull to win the average and a cool $11,985 as the only man to ride two.
“My dad always taught me to take care of business, and that’s what I focus on for sure,” said Barker. “I rode well in the first round and then I took care of business in the short round.”
Monies won at PRCA Xtreme Bulls Tour stops count towards the 2014 Windham Weaponry High Performance PRCA World Standings, which determine qualifiers for the Dec. 4-13 Wrangler NFR. The boost should take Barker from 12th in the standings into the top five.
“I’m glad everything’s going my way and I have momentum,” he said. “I like waking up with a positive attitude. Really I love this sport and getting on bulls every day. I’m going to just keep riding and try to make the Finals and try to win the world.”
Thursday night’s Xtreme Bulls kicked off the 95th Reno Rodeo, a 10-day event sanctioned by the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association during which nearly 700 contestants will compete for shares of $550,000. Performances run June 19-27 and are expected to draw 140,000 fans.
Action from the Reno-Tahoe Xtreme Bulls event will air on MAV TV on July 8 at 6 p.m. and 9 p.m. Eastern. Tickets for the Reno Rodeo may be purchased by visiting www.RenoRodeo.com or by calling 800-325-7328. For more information, call 775-329-3877.