PBR selects Load and Go Landscape Products to provide dirt
Quality of dirt at JQH Arena is important for worldâ€™s best bull riders, bulls
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. â€“ It is one of the most frequently-asked questions when the Professional Bull Riders bring the Built Ford Tough Series, featuring the worldâ€™s best bull riders and bulls, into town.
The first question is typically, â€œHow much dirt do you use?â€ After being told that the average venue requires approximately 750 tons, there will be a pause, and more often than not, a follow-up question will be asked. â€œDo you bring your own dirt?â€ The PBR has seven 53-foot semi tractor trailers that travel from city to city, but none of the vehicles, decorated with images of the top bull riders and bulls in the world, contain dirt.
The dirt, in fact, is secured in each town by Randy Spraggins and his Special-T-Tracks, Inc., crew. Spraggins and his team must find dirt in each of the 28 cities that the BFTS visits that will meet the exact standards of the premiere bull riding organization in the world.
It is not uncommon for â€œThe Dirt Guysâ€ to use the same dirt from one year to the next, especially when they find dirt of exceptional quality, as they did a year ago with Load and Go Landscape Products in Springfield, Mo.
â€œI remember last year when we were in Springfield, Cody Lambert, who is a co-founder and director of livestock for the PBR, looked at me and said, â€˜This is some of the best dirt weâ€™ve had,â€™â€ Spraggins said. â€œOnce we heard that, it made our decision to use Load and Go Landscape Products again this year very easy.â€
Brought into JQH Arena one truckload at a time, the dirt will be spread and smoothed to a depth of 6-to-8 inches. The dirt must provide solid footing for the best bucking bulls on the planet, but cannot be too hard as to injure the Top 35 bull riders in the world who will be landing on it time and time again.
The PBR uses about 750 tons of dirt on average, but the amount can vary widely depending on the size of the venue and the configuration of the arena and pens that house the bulls backstage. Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas, requires the most dirt with 2,400 tons, while the world-famous Pit in Albuquerque, N.M., takes only 400 tons. Despite being the smallest amount of dirt, the Pit takes the longest to fill, because the dirt must be brought in one bucket at a time using Bobcat skidsteer loaders.
Dirt typically is loaded in on Thursday, beginning at 2 p.m., and continuing for approximately four hours. For the show in Springfield, dirt was hauled in beginning at 6 a.m. on Thursday, and continued until 3 p.m. The dirt is actually unloaded outside JQH Arena, and then brought into the facility in the same manner as Albuquerque.
When the event is over, the dirt will be taken back out, and stored, so it is ready to be used again next year.
Springfield is the 24th stop of the 2012 BFTS season, which opened in January with capacity crowds at Madison Square Garden in New York. The BFTS will make 28 stops in 23 states before the Built Ford Tough World Finals in Las Vegas on Oct. 24-28, 2012. The World Finals are where the PBR World Champion will be crowned and awarded the coveted championship buckle and a $1 million bonus. The richest bull riding event on the planet, the World Finals has a total purse of more than $2 million.
The BFTS is televised every week on CBS, CBS Sports Network, NBC, NBC Sports Network, and YouTube. BFTS telecasts are produced for the PBR under a multi-year agreement with David Neal Productions, a Los Angeles-based production company led by 34-time EmmyÂ® Award winner and Peabody Award winner David Neal, who serves as executive producer.
About the Professional Bull Riders, Inc. (PBR)
The PBR is the worldâ€™s premier bull riding organization. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the founding of the PBR. In just two decades, the dream of 20 bull riders has become a global sports phenomenon that is televised worldwide. More than 100 million viewers annually watch primetime PBR programming on networks around the world including CBS, CBS Sports Network, NBC, and NBC Sports Network. The PBR has awarded over $100 million in prize money and 25 riders have earned over $1 million, including Justin McBride with $5.5 million â€“ the most of any Western-sports athlete in history. Nearly 2 million fans attend Built Ford Tough Series and Touring Pro Division events each year. For more information on the PBR, go to www.pbr.com, or follow on Facebook at www.facebook.com/PBR, Twitter at http://twitter.com/PBR, and YouTube at www.YouTube.com/PBR.