Vieira wins Iron Cowboy title

By Brett Hoffman | Published Wednesday, February 27, 2019

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Joao Ricardo Vieira clinched the Professional Bull Riders’ coveted Iron Cowboy title Saturday night at the Staples Center in Los Angeles and earned $146,000.

The Brazilian who lives in Decatur was the only rider to stay on three bulls throughout the two-day show, Friday and Saturday.

Vieira was the lone cowboy to make a qualified ride in Round 3. He turned in a lofty score of 90.25 points aboard Cochise.

Vieira moved up to second in the world-title rankings after earning 760 world points during the Iron Cowboy. He has 1,895 points. Jess Lockwood, the 2017 world champion, is ranked No. 1 with 2,097.5. Chase Outlaw is third with 1,477.5.


Defending world champion barrel racer Hailey Kinsel prefers to compete in the larger rodeos that are closer to home.

“You want to go the bigger ones where the ground is good, where it’s safe for your horse to run,” she said. “As far as proximity, it’s which ones that are closer so you don’t have to drive too many miles because it’s the miles that cripples your horse.”

That strategy has worked well for the South Texas cowgirl at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo, which is a little less than 90 miles from her hometown of Cotulla.

Kinsel has won the barrel racing title in San Antonio for the past two years. Saturday, she paced the field with a time of 14.02 seconds in the final round. Kinsel won the event and earned $29,500 throughout the rodeo.

Kinsel is on a roll. On Feb. 9, she clinched the barrel racing title at the Fort Worth Stock Show Rodeo. In Fort Worth, Kinsel earned $16,771 in prize money.

As she competes more so in the bigger rodeos, Kinsel, 24, rides her 8-year-old mare DM Sissy Hayday whom she calls Sister.

Kinsel said Sister excels because she’s athletic and determined.

“She’s real fast and she’s got a big heart,” Kinsel said.


Many of the world’s top rodeo competitors will saddle up at AT&T Stadium in Arlington to compete in the $2.35 million RFD-TV’s The American this weekend. The performances are scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday. For the first time, the men’s pro events will be approved by the PRCA.

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