A Closer Look at the Field of Competitors

 It has been a transitional year for the CBR during their 2012 season. While some of the faces have remained the same, it was the new names that made the headlines for the most part. 10 of the 40 CBR World Championship finalists are considered rookies or new to the CINCH Tour and more than half of them are riders who have just turned 18 and pro. The top 5 names in the current standings are all new to the CBR and only two riders in the top ten are considered veterans.

Let’s take a peek at some of the “old and new” competing in this year’s 2012 CBR World Championships at Cheyenne Frontier Days.

Luis Blanco- Currently first in the CINCH standings, Luis worked his way into the CBR through the Horizon Series and  arrived on the CINCH Tour for the first event of the season in  Hobbs, NM.  He is from Brazil and made quite an impression with his exhilarating style of riding. Luis won his first event in Del Rio, which also gained him a new Dodge Truck. In Brazil, winning a vehicle brings more notoriety than cash. He followed that up but announcing his son, due any day, will be named George Paul Blanco, in honor of his win and tribute to the late, great bull rider.

Josh Barentine- This Louisiana native started off his CBR career at Horizon Events in the fall of 2011.  Although not considered a rookie, as he has been riding for several years, he is new to the CBR. Josh came back to riding bulls last year after taking time off to deal with his personal life. Now, he is currently second in the CINCH standings, and after clenching the Horizon Series Tour Championship, has a good possibility of winning the CINCH Tour as well.

Robson Arago- Also a native of Brazil, “Spiderman” webbed his way into the CBR through the Horizon Series. After his first Tour appearance in Lufkin, TX, Robson never looked backed. He competed hard and at nearly every CINCH Tour and Horizon Tour event including the weekly stockyard events in Fort Worth. Robson quickly climbed the ranks and will make his first appearance at the CBR World Championships next week.

Tyler Adrian- Tyler hails from Bozeman, MT and we quickly learned just how tough this cowboy is. He was knocked unconscious at his first CINCH Tour event in Hobbs, NM after his qualified ride. Considered out for the evening, he pulled himself together and came back to compete in the short round that same night.  Tyler has been consistent all season and has earned a spot in this year’s Championships coming in 6th in the standings.

Craig Jackson – A familiar face on the CINCH Tour, the Houston, Texas native is easily one of the most charismatic characters in bull riding.  Named the “Hip Hop “ Cowboy, Craig won back to back Championships in El Paso, TX.  Craig seemed to up his game this year, attending many more CBR CINCH Tour and Horizon Tour events than in the past, all in effort to maintain his position on the standings. This will be Craig Jackson’s third appearance at a CBR World Championship.

Trey Benton- A true rookie, this Rock Island, TX cowboy turned professional last year. He has several Texas Youth bull riding accolades listed under his name and this year he added a few CBR honors as well including his most recent win at a Horizon event in Giddings. Easily one of the most talented and level headed riders to come up the ranks in a long time, Trey earns his spot at this year’s Championships coming into it in the top ten.

Ardie Maier- One of the most beloved veterans of the CINCH CBR Tour, the Timber Lake, SD native is a face all CBR fans know.  Struggling through injuries the last few years, Ardie is at the top of his game once again. He is top 15 in the PRCA and top 10 in CBR.  Ardie qualifies for the sixth time this season and everyone looks forward to seeing him in Cheyenne.

Cody Teel- This Kountze, TX cowboy exploded onto the CINCH Tour with a win at his first big event in Hobbs, NM. Cody was already making a name for himself on the Horizon Series Tour and fans eagerly anticipated what would happen once he had a chance to play with the big boys. He did not disappoint. Cody just turned pro after his eighteenth birthday last year, has demonstrated a lot of maturity and has carefully calculated his riding career. Of course you cannot plan for injuries, which have set him back some this season, but all in all there is a lot to look forward to in watching this talented young gun.

Cooper Kanngiesser- This Kansas cowboys name is synonymous with CBR.  He is a two- time reserve CBR World Champion. Always calm, cool, and collected, and after coming so close, twice, continues to chip away each season with consistent riding and effort.  This one just won’t give up until he takes home that big buckle. Cooper makes his eighth try at a World Championship next week in Cheyenne.

Ronnie Kitchens- Throughout the years a lot has been said about Ronnie Kitchens. Twenty years gives folks a lot of time to say it too. One thing is for sure, this Hutto, Texas rider is one of the toughest, if not THE toughest cowboys ever to have been in the arena. Today, Ronnie is the oldest, at just 38 years, to ride on the CINCH Tour.  He has not been to a CBR Championship event in a few years, but he returns this year with a vengeance. Ronnie has a fire not seen in a long time. His 92 point ride recently in Giddings, TX is being touted as one of the best all time rides of the CBR. Let’s see what he can do next week in Cheyenne.

Other Rookies and Vets to keep an eye out for are:

Rookie-Cooper Davis, Jasper, TX. Just won his first event in New Braunfels, TX

Rookie-Cody Dollins, Goldwaithe, TX. Rode consistently and qualifies as 28th in the standings.

Veteran-Jake Littlefield, West Point, MS. Jake took some time off to heal from injuries and came back midway through the season. He scored several 90 point rides right off the bat. It’s good to have a guy like Jake back on the tour.

Veteran- 3- Time World Champion Bull Rider J W Harris, Mullin, TX. Arguably the best bull rider of this generation, JW had most of the season off recovering from injuries and surgeries.  JW is back in the arena and was given a Champion invitation buy Tuff Hedeman. His riding will add even more excitement to the competition.

Veteran-PRCA World Champion Wesley Silcox.  This new papa has also had some time off this year, recovering from injuries and starting a family. Wes made an appearance at a few CINCH Tour events this season and was also invited by Tuff Hedeman to the 2012 CBR World Championships.

There you have it, a look at some of our most notables of the competition.  All 40 riders participating have well earned spots and combined, will make for one heck of a show.

Cheyenne Frontier Days begins July 20th through the 29th with the CBR World Championship July 23rd and 24th.  More – Ticket info, by phone: 800.227.6333.

About Cheyenne Frontier Days™ (CFD):
Cheyenne Frontier Days™, supported by 2,500 volunteers, hosts over 550,000 fans and visitors at Frontier Park annually.  Named the PRCA’s Large Outdoor Rodeo of the Year eleven times, the “Daddy of ‘em All”® is also home to the best cowboys in the world the last full week in July each year. Over the years, CFD’s “Frontier Nights”™ has previously hosted major entertainers such as KISS, George Strait, Bon Jovi, Kenny Chesney as well as many others.  For tickets online and event information, visit; for tickets by phone, call 800-227-6336 (307-778-7222 in Cheyenne).  Media contact: Nicole Gamst, 307-778-7200;