ARIAT TEXAS RATTLERS TO COMPETE IN GROUNDBREAKING PBR TEAM SERIES LAUNCHING IN JUNE 2022
Fisher Family-owned bull riding team to make its home at Dickies Arena
PBR (Professional Bull Riders) today announced that the Ariat Texas Rattlers will represent Dallas-Fort Worth in the PBR Team Series, an elite new league featuring the world’s top bull riders competing in games beginning in June 2022. Based in Fort Worth, Texas, the Ariat Texas Rattlers will call Dickies Arena home.
As the official boot sponsor of PBR and a longtime sponsor of notable PBR athletes, including two-time and reigning World Champion Jose Vitor Leme and 2016 World Champion Cooper Davis, Ariat is expanding its presence in the sport as the official title sponsor of a new PBR team, joining seven others in the new league. The Ariat Texas Rattlers are owned by the Fisher Family, who have extensive experience owning and operating professional sports teams in Major League Baseball and Major League Soccer.
“We are thrilled to bring a professional bull riding team to Fort Worth, Texas, ‘where the west begins’. We are committed to doing everything we can to give the people of Fort Worth an experience that’s worthy of the toughest cowboys who have called Fort Worth home,” said Mark George, General Manager of the Ariat Texas Rattlers.
The PBR Team Series’ inaugural 10-event regular season will culminate in a team playoff at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas November 4-6, 2022. The league will launch with eight founding teams, each scheduled to host in their respective city an annual bull riding event and western lifestyle festival, building excitement and rooting interests in the sport.
The PBR Team Series event for the Ariat Texas Rattlers at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth will be announced at a later date. Fans can connect with the Ariat Texas Rattlers on social media at @TexasRattlers on Facebook, @TexasRattlers_ on Twitter, @TexasRattlers_ on Instagram, and @TexasRattlers_ on TikTok.
The full PBR Team Series league roster is:
- Ariat Texas Rattlers, based in Fort Worth, Tex., owned by the Fisher family
- Arizona Ridge Riders, based in Glendale, Ariz., owned by Teton Ridge
- Austin Gamblers, based in Austin, Tex., owned by Egon Durban
- Carolina Chaos, based in Winston-Salem, N.C., owned by the league and operated by Richard Childress Racing.
- Kansas City Outlaws, based in Kansas City, Mo., owned by Pulley Outlaws LLC
- Missouri Thunder, based in Ridgedale, Mo., owned by Johnny Morris
- Nashville Stampede, based in Nashville, Tenn., owned by Morris Communications Company
- Oklahoma Freedom, based in Oklahoma City, Okla., owned by the league and operated by Prodigal
There will also be two “neutral site” league-produced regular season events and the season playoff and championship. All PBR Team Series events will be carried on either the CBS Television Network, streaming live on Paramount+, CBS Sports Network or Pluto TV.
The league will host a PBR Team Series rider draft on May 23 prior to start of the 2022 season, among PBR rider members who have declared for the draft during a league eligibility window. To determine team selection order of the athletes, a draft lottery among teams will be held prior to the PBR Unleash The Beast event at Madison Square Garden in New York on Friday, January 7.
The PBR Team Series complements the successful PBR Unleash The Beast premier tour, which held its first championship in 1994 and will now compete in a condensed January – May schedule, with its World Finals held in May in Fort Worth, Texas from May 13-22 at Dickies Arena.
The move of its elite series’ championship weekend to Fort Worth is PBR’s latest expansion in the heart of Cowboy Country.
In June 2021, PBR announced a groundbreaking joint venture with Stockyard Heritage Development Co. and ASM Global in which PBR will help program Cowtown Coliseum and bring dozens of annual western sports and lifestyle events to this iconic venue and the historic Stockyards District.
Boasting a rich history in the Metroplex, the region has played host to many historic PBR moments to date. Among those moments, Cowtown Coliseum in Fort Worth held the first PBR Unleash The Beast event in 1993, while in 2018, AT&T Stadium in nearby Arlington was the site of the highest-attended, single-day event in PBR history, hosting more than 46,000 fans.
Additionally, the prestigious, team-formatted, international PBR Global Cup has twice been held at AT&T Stadium, including the event’s debut on American soil in 2019, and in 2020, due to COVID-19 restrictions, the home of the NFL’s Dallas Cowboys held the PBR World Finals after the event was relocated from Las Vegas due to COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions.
“Over the past 29 years, PBR has grown to become a mainstream sport carried by CBS and Pluto TV and packing marquee arenas across the country,” said PBR CEO and Commissioner Sean Gleason. “The incredible lineup of passionate, highly successful owners working with their talented staffs in the new PBR Team Series validates our new league – a transformational addition to the sport that will help take PBR to new levels.”
The PBR Team Series builds on the existing structure of professional bull riding with the same basic rules for judging and scoring qualified 8-second bull rides. Events will be structured in a tournament-style format with all teams competing in head-to-head matchups against a different opponent each day. Each game will feature five riders per team squaring off against another team. Full team rosters will be comprised of seven riders on the core roster and up to three practice squad members. The team with the highest aggregate score of qualified rides among its riders will be declared the winner of each game. The event winner will be the team with the most game wins across an event, with a special bonus round designed as a tie-breaker to determine final event standings.
Team formatted bull-riding events have been growing in popularity since the debut of the PBR Global Cup in 2017, which pitted nation against nation in the name of national pride. The successful event format continued in June and July 2021 with the PBR Monster Energy Team Challenge, presented by U.S. Border Patrol. In addition, PBR has staged multiple Air Force Reserve Cowboys for a Cause team charity events.
About the Fisher Family:
The Fisher family, founders of Gap Inc., are thrilled to be one of the founding team owners for the launch of the PBR team league. For decades, the Fisher Family have made investments in timberland and forest products, footwear and apparel, real estate, education, as well as the Oakland Athletics (MLB team) and the San Jose Earthquakes (MLS team). The family is actively involved with a number of philanthropic causes, including SFMOMA, The KIPP Foundation, and UCSF.
Ariat was founded in 1993 to reimagine the boot for modern riders, ranchers, and workers. Our pursuit of functional innovation has raised the bar for performance, fit, and craftsmanship all in service to Ariat’s global community of world-class athletes, Olympians, and people like you. Our products are designed to outperform in the most demanding environments. Ariat is now one of the top western, equestrian, outdoor, and work brands in the world. The company takes its name from Secretariat, the greatest racehorse of all time.
About PBR (Professional Bull Riders):
PBR is the world’s premier bull riding organization. More than 500 bull riders compete in more than 200 events annually across the televised PBR Unleash The Beast tour (UTB), which features the top 35 bull riders in the world; the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT); the PBR Touring Pro Division (TPD); and the PBR’s international circuits in Australia, Brazil, Canada and Mexico. In June 2022, PBR will launch PBR Team Series – eight teams of the world’s best bull riders competing for a new championship. PBR’s digital assets include RidePass, which is home to Western sports. PBR is a subsidiary of IMG, a global leader in sports, fashion, events and media. For more information, visit PBR.com, or follow on Facebook at Facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at Twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube at YouTube.com/PBR.
About Dickies Arena
Dickies Arena is a 14,000 seat, spectacular multipurpose venue that was built in 2019 and recently nominated for Arena of the Year for 2021 by Pollstar Magazine. The arena is located adjacent to the Will Rogers Memorial Center campus in Fort Worth, Texas. The facility is the result of a pioneering public-private partnership between the City of Fort Worth, Tarrant County, the State of Texas and a group of private-sector participants, including foundations, individuals and organizations. The arena is owned by the City of Fort Worth and managed by the not-for-profit operating entity, Trail Drive Management Corp. (TDMC). The state-of-the-art arena hosts concerts, sporting events and family entertainment, and is home to Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo performances. For more information, visit www.DickiesArena.com.