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Bragging rights

11/9/2008

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LAS VEGAS — On a night when Guilherme Marchi clinched the 2008 Professional Bull Riders Built Ford Tough Series World Championship, retiring two-time world champion Justin McBride demonstrated that he is going out at the top of his game.

McBride, the 29-year-old from Elk City, Okla., rode the bull Scene of the Crash for 91.75 points to win Round Six and add another $25,000 to his PBR career record earnings.

The bull was selected for McBride in Saturday morning's draft by PBR livestock director Cody Lambert and it set up an intriguing matchup between rider and bull, who had met twice before. The first time, the bull prevailed and the second time, McBride rode the bull, earning $200,000, a PBR record payout for one ride.

Saturday's ride was the rubber match and McBride took pleasure in coming out victorious.

"Since I'm done after (Saturday), I'll always be better than Scene of the Crash," he said.

McBride, who announced in October that he would be retiring at the end of the World Finals, said he is simply focusing on riding his next bull.

"(Saturday's round win) was just as important as any round win I've ever had," he said. "That's the way I've tried to approach it my entire career."

Ultimately, the night belonged to Marchi, who capped a dominating regular season by wrapping up the world championship.

"Finally," said Marchi, who finished runner-up to the world champion each of the past three years.

The 26-year-old Brazilian cowboy also clinched the $1 million bonus that goes to the PBR World Champion, but he said he would like to add another $250,000 to that total by winning the World Finals — and he's in perfect position to do so.

He is the only rider to cover all six of his bulls heading into today's seventh and championship rounds. J.B. Mauney, who had led the average coming into the round after riding five straight, bucked off the bull Red Light, leaving the door open for Marchi to take the lead.

"I need to ride two more bulls," he said. "I'm going to ride all my bulls this week. That is my focus now."

If he does it, Marchi will become the first rider to ever cover all eight bulls at a PBR World Finals.

If Marchi can't ride two more, there are several riders right on his heels if he stumbles, including two-time world champion Chris Shivers, who has ridden five of six bulls, including a 91-point ride on Devil's Night on Saturday night. It was the second-highest score of the evening and earned Shivers $18,000.

Others who have ridden five bulls include Mauney, rookie Reese Cates and Brazilian Robson Palermo. Palermo finished third in Round Six on Saturday night with a 90.5-point ride on the bull Hot Stuff. Cates finished fourth with a 90-point ride on Evil Forces.

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