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PBR AUSTIN GAMBLERS AND TAYLOR RODEO ASSOCIATION ANNOUNCE “THE NEXT GAMBLER”

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AUSTIN, Texas — The VoiceAmerica’s Got Talent, and UFC’s The Ultimate Fighter are shows designed to find undiscovered talent and pair them with big name coaches to mentor them and lead them to victory.  There will now be a bull riding version of this concept.

The Austin Gamblers, who compete in the groundbreaking PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Teams’ league, in conjunction with the Taylor Rodeo Association, have announced “The Next Gambler,” a unique, PBR-sanctioned event where the winner can earn a Gamblers’ roster spot. The event will take place on Saturday, June 8, at the Williamson County Exposition Center in Taylor, Texas.

The PBR Challenger Series event will feature 20 riders divided into four teams that will be coached by current Austin Gambler riders. The four teams will be decided by a draft before the event, with the current Gamblers’ roster recruiting riders to participate. The four teams will then compete in a five-on-five tournament-style competition mirroring the revolutionary PBR Teams format, with the winning team receiving a to-be-determined prize package from the Gamblers and Taylor Rodeo Association.

“The Next Gambler will give a chance to aspiring professional bull riders who haven’t been widely seen or don’t get a chance to compete on one of the elite tours,” said Gamblers Head Coach and 1997 World Champion Michael Gaffney.  “This is a great opportunity for young riders to showcase their talent, and also for our current Gamblers to pass along what they’ve learned.”

Following each team’s two matchups in the long round, the eight highest-ranked riders in the aggregate from their first two rides will advance to the championship round regardless of which team they are on. The eligible rider with the highest aggregate score after the championship round will earn a provisional spot on the Gamblers’ roster alongside current Gamblers including two-time PBR Teams MVP Jose Vitor Leme, 2018 PBR World Champion Kaique Pacheco, and Dalton Kasel, who is currently ranked No. 3 in the elite 2024 Unleash The Beast standings.

Proceeds from Taylor Rodeo can be seen back at work in the community through donations to local organizations such as Future Farmers of America and 4-H Booster Clubs, Dell Children’s Hospital, and numerous other local charities.  In 2022 and 2023, the Taylor Rodeo Association awarded $50,000 in academic scholarships to graduating seniors of Williamson, Milam, and Lee counties.

“We are very excited to partner up with the Austin Gamblers and their riders and team for this annual event in June,” said Taylor Rodeo Association President Tim Sims. “We know our contestants will be excited to vie for a chance at being the next Gambler!”

Tickets for the event go on sale on Monday, April 15, and can be purchased at TaylorRodeo.org starting at $25 for adults and $10 for kids three and older. 

About the Austin Gamblers: The Austin Gamblers, regular season champions in the 2022 and 2023 PBR Camping World Team Series, are based in Austin, Texas, where the team’s third-annual PBR Gambler Days homestand will be held at the Moody Center on August 23-25, 2024. The team is coached by PBR legend and World Champion Michael Gaffney. The team’s Assistant Coach is Brazilian native and PBR’s first World Champion and first three-time World Champion Adriano Moraes, who also serves as Director of Brazil Operations. Under the leadership of JJ Gottsch as CEO, the Austin Gamblers are owned by Egon and Abby Durban. Both originally from Texas, Egon is Co-CEO of Silver Lake, the global leader in technology investing, and serves on the board of directors of Dell Technologies, whose founder, Michael Dell, is also a minority investor in the Gamblers.

About PBR Team Series: The PBR Camping World Team Series is an elite league featuring the world’s top bull riders competing on teams in five-on-five games leading to a Team Championship at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. During the 2024 season, the league’s third, each of the 10 teams – Austin Gamblers of Austin, TX; Arizona Ridge Riders of Glendale, AZ; Carolina Cowboys of Greensboro, NC; Florida Freedom of Sunrise, FL; Kansas City Outlaws of Kansas City, MO; Nashville Stampede of Nashville, TN; New York Mavericks of Brooklyn, NY; OK; Oklahoma Wildcatters of Oklahoma City, OK; Missouri Thunder of Ridgedale, MO; and Texas Rattlers of Fort Worth, TX– will host a homestand. Neutral-site games to be announced are planned as well.

PBR Teams, launched in July 2022, builds on the existing structure of professional bull riding with the same basic rules for judging and scoring qualified 8-second bull rides. In events staged in a tournament-style format, all teams compete in head-to-head matchups against a different opponent each day. Each game features five riders per team squaring off against another team. Full team rosters are comprised of seven riders on the Protected Roster and five Reserve riders. The team with the highest aggregate score of qualified rides among its riders is declared the winner of each game. All PBR Teams events are carried on either the CBS Television Network, streaming live on Paramount+, CBS Sports Network, or RidePass on Pluto TV.

PBR is part of Endeavor, a global sports and entertainment company. 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.

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