Bull Riders Move Marquee Event from Las Vegas Strip to Texas

By | September 1, 2021

The Professional Bull Riders World Finals event is relocating next year from the Las Vegas Strip to Fort Worth, Texas.

Bull Rider
A bull named Big Kahuna leaps after throwing a cowboy at a championship event in T-Mobile Arena. The arena is on the Las Vegas Strip near several large hotel casinos. (Image: Las Vegas Review-Journal)

Sean Gleason, Professional Bull Riders’ CEO and commissioner, said the move to North Texas allows the league “to hold our crown jewel, the World Finals, in the heart of cowboy country.” According to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram, the city of Fort Worth, part of the Metroplex that includes Dallas, is “where the West begins.” 

The change occurs immediately after the 2021 PBR World Finals from Nov. 3-7 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, according to the PBR website. T-Mobile Arena, home of the NHL’s Vegas Golden Knights, is on the west side of the Strip near Park MGM and other hotel casinos.

The upcoming PBR “Unleash The Beast” competitive bull-riding season begins next year in January. It concludes with a seven-day championship festival from May 13-22 in North Texas. The World Finals will be held at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth. 

The 2022 season will include at least 20 “Unleash The Beast” events at arenas in New York City, Los Angeles, Oklahoma City, and Billings, Montana.

The PBR’s annual championship has been held in Las Vegas since the competition was founded in 1994. The one exception was 2020, when the finals were in Arlington, Texas, because of COVID-19 restrictions.

Gleason said Las Vegas has been “an incredible host to the PBR World Finals for nearly three decades.” 

“While we are excited about the move to Texas, Las Vegas will continue to hold marquee PBR events, which will be announced in the coming months,” he said.

LVCVA Ad Touts Bull Riding

The announcement that the championship bull-riding event is leaving Southern Nevada comes during the same month that the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority released a television ad touting the city as the “Sports and Entertainment Capital of the World.”

Kate Wik, LVCVA’s chief marketing officer, said the advertising campaign celebrates the “excitement and passion that make Las Vegas the greatest arena on earth.”

In addition to hosting the Golden Knights, the city also is home to the NFL’s Las Vegas Raiders. The Raiders play at Allegiant Stadium, just west of the Strip near the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino.

The new LVCVA 30-second ad does not show any casino gambling or gambling machines. An earlier LVCVA ad also did not show casino gambling.

However, the new ad, voiced by performance poet J. Ivy, shows an illustration of a bull rider. In unveiling the new ad earlier this month, the LVCVA said in a news release that Las Vegas is home to the Professional Bull Riders and other athletic organizations.

An updated version of the ad without the bull rider had not been posted on the LVCVA website by Tuesday.

Bull Riding Death

On Sunday, the PBR announced that bull rider Amadeu Campos Silva died from injuries he received at a bull-riding event in Fresno, Calif.

Silva died of chest injuries when he was bucked off a bull, according to USA Today.

Cody Lambert, the PBR livestock director, told USA Today the death was caused by a “really freak, tragic accident.’’ 

“When he came off, his spur got tangled up and it turned him upside down right under the bull’s back leg,’’ Lambert said.

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