Tuff's Picks for the George Paul Memorial

Tuff's Picks for the George Paul


The George Paul Memorial is the original bull riding and we're about to kick off the event's 35th year. The oldest stand-alone bull riding in the world has a reputation for bringing the top riders and bulls of the sport to Del Rio, Tex. and tonight's long round is no exception. We do a small format change for the George Paul because there isn't a short go, there's only a long round and the Ram Country Bounty Bull. That means a lot of the bulls out tonight would normally make the short go so there's a lot of 90-or-nothing matchups in the draw. We'll probably see fewer qualified rides but the ones we do see will be for a lot of points.


The first guy out will be Robson Arago and he's got a bull called Shine Time from Norris Dalton. This is probably one of the best bulls out tonight. He's a big-time bucker and I don't know if he's ever been ridden. If Robson makes the whistle I think he'll win the round.


Last year's George Paul Memorial Champion, Bradley Harris, has a bull called Got It of Lyndal Hurst's. This bull was outstanding at Bossier City. Bradley may have won here last year but he's kind of struggled of late. This is one that potentially could kind of get him back in the groove and give him a chance to win the round.


Josh Barrentine is currently sitting third in the standings and has Ropin' Dreams of Danny Reagan's, which is a bull that's been really good. He's one they should be riding but they haven't been. If he rides him he's going to be 88 to 90.


Trevor Kastner is an NFR guy and he has a really good bull from Exclusive Genetics called Train Robber. He's probably not going to win the round but he could probably be in the top four. Here at the George Paul, you don't have to win the round to get big money.


Hector Cardona is from Mexico and, being right here on the border, the crowd in Del Rio likes the Hispanic riders a lot. The crowd will get really loud when he's up and he'll have a lot of support in the stands. He's got a bull called Ragin' JT that he could be 90 on.


Trey Benton is another guy that has a really good bull. He's drawn Smilin' Bob. They were 88 on him a while back so I think Trey's probably got a chance to get some money.


Chandler Bownds has a bull that they say is outstanding but I don't know how healthy he is right now. When he showed up for Bossier City he was pretty beat up and just not very healthy so I don't know that's he's really riding his best right now.


The big matchup, of course, is whoever wins the long round and has the chance to get on the Ram Country Bounty Bull, 78 Poker Face. He's never been ridden. I think he is rideable but the right guy has to get him drawn. If the guy rides Poker Face, Ram Country Dodge in Del Rio is giving him a brand new 2012 Ram 1500. The opportunity to drive off in a Dodge truck for one ride and eight seconds is pretty cool and exciting.


The George Paul is a part of bull riding history that CBR is glad to be a part of. There's so many people around Del Rio who have gone to this event their entire lives. It's a big deal here and it's a big deal for the riders too. There's certain buckles a guy always wants to win - a world title, the NFR, Cheyenne - but the George Paul was always in my top three. I got lucky and won it three times. With the big outdoor grandstand and old school wooden chutes, it's still one of my favorite events to come back to.