Moreira Capitalizes on Decision to Come Stateside, Wins Round 1 of the Ground-Breaking 2020 Gwinnett Invitational

Mauricio Gula Moreira 2020 Gwinnett Invitational Round 1 Winner Mauricio Gula Moreira 2020 Gwinnett Invitational Round 1 Winner Photo Courtesy AndyWatson - Bull StockMedia

For the second week in a row, on an unprecedented night best described as “surreal,” a rookie put up a big ride to move up the PBR (Professional Bull Riders) world standings.
Living the American dream after arriving in the country less than three months ago, Mauricio Gula Moreira (Gaviao Peixoto, Brazil) earned more money on this night than his entire 2019 earnings. Moreira got his fellow riders on their feet, as the only others in attendance, with an 87.75-point conquering of Freakin Wicked (David Rodeo Ranch/Fogle).

DULUTH, Georgia – The Brazilian newcomer earned $3,580 and 20 world points, along with his first Unleash The Beast (UTB) round win, in just his second premier series event. Moreira moved from No. 43 to No. 33 in the world standings.
“It’s hard to describe how happy I am,” the young 20-year-old said after his round win. “Just to be able to compete against the best in the world and win a round at this level, it’s so amazing. I’ve been working hard and am going to continue to show that I’m getting better and better every weekend.”
As a result of decisions made by local authorities, the Infinite Energy Center in Duluth, Georgia, set to host the PBR’s 2020 Gwinnett Invitational, was not open to public gathering this weekend. With no fans in the building, PBR bucked 35 bulls in an empty arena.
To bring the Gwinnett Invitational to fans live on CBS Sports Network and RidePass, the Western sports digital network, PBR took a series of safety measures. These additional safeguards include health screenings following CDC guidelines in order for anyone to enter the building; allowing only essential personnel into the venue; operating with a smaller staff; using six different competitor locker rooms; and separating various groups of personnel working the event.
The veteran Fabiano Vieira (Perola, Brazil), who is looking for his first UTB win of the season to add to his two Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour wins, sits tied for second place heading into championship Sunday.
Vieira conquered Dang It (Davis Rodeo Ranch/Fogle) for 86.75 points, earning 9.5 world points and $2,375 on the night. The world points pushed Vieira to the No. 14 spot in the 2020 PBR World Championship race.
A resurgent three-time World Champion Silvano Alves (Pilar do Sul, Brazil) was the other part of the tie for second in Round 1.
Needing world points to avoid the premier series cut line, Alves covered Armageddon (Stockyards/Scott Winston/Melton Bull Co.) for 86.75-points on the opening night of competition.
Alves picked up 9.5 world points, and $2,735 heading into second day of competition. Alves is now No. 51 in the world rankings, and needs to move up at least 12 spots in the world standings to stay on the elite tour.
Aaron Kleier (Clermont, Queensland, Australia), the two-time PBR Australia Champion that has come to the U.S. to compete on the UTB for 2020, was fourth in Round 1.
Starting the night off on a high note, Kleier was one of the first successful rides of the night when he bested La Grande (Davis Rodeo Ranch) and was marked 86.25 points. With Colten Jesse (Konawa, Oklahoma) and Mason Taylor (Maypearl, Texas) cheering from the arena fence, Kleier was met with raucous praise from his fellow competitors.
Kleier is now the No. 15 bull rider in the world standings.
Fifth place in Round 1 belonged to upstart PBR rookie Cole Melancon (Paris, Texas). After his win at the PBR Iron Cowboy Major in Los Angeles, Melancon has held a commanding lead on the 2020 Rookie of the Year Race.
Melancon was marked 86 points for his 8-second trip aboard Burn Out (Northcott Macza Pro Rodeo), and earned $850 and seven world points on the night, cementing him in the No. 6 spot in the world rankings.
Round 2 and the championship round of the groundbreaking 2020 Gwinnett Invitational will begin tomorrow, March 15 at 12 p.m. ET and will be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.
Fans can relive every out from Round 1 of the 2020 Gwinnett Invitational on Sunday, March 15 at 8 a.m. ET on or via the RidePass mobile app.
PBR Unleash The Beast
Gwinnett Invitational
Infinite Energy Center – Duluth, Georgia 
Event Leaders (Round 1-Round 2-Round 3-Event Aggregate-Event Points)
1. Mauricio Gula Moreira, 87.75-0-0-87.75-20 Points.
2. Fabiano Vieira, 86.75-0-0-86.75-9.5 Points.
(tie). Silvano Alves, 86.75-0-0-86.75-9.5 Points.
4. Aaron Kleier, 86.25-0-0-86.25-8 Points.
5. Cole Melancon, 86-0-0-86.00-7 Points.
6. Cody Casper, 85.5-0-0-85.50-6 Points.
7. Claudio Montanha Jr., 84.5-0-0-84.50-4.5 Points.
(tie). Alex Cerqueira, 84.5-0-0-84.50-4.5 Points.
9. Dener Barbosa, 84.25-0-0-84.25-3 Points.
10. Keyshawn Whitehorse, 82.75-0-0-82.75-2 Points.
11. Stetson Lawrence, 80.75-0-0-80.75-1 Points.
João Ricardo Vieira, 0-0-0-0.00
Daylon Swearingen, 0-0-0-0.00
Kaique Pacheco, 0-0-0-0.00
Eduardo Aparecido, 0-0-0-0.00
Ramon de Lima, 0-0-0-0.00
Colten Jesse, 0-0-0-0.00
Lucas Divino, 0-0-0-0.00
Marco Eguchi, 0-0-0-0.00
Derek Kolbaba, 0-0-0-0.00
Mason Taylor, 0-0-0-0.00
Ezekiel Mitchell, 0-0-0-0.00
Andrew Alvidrez, 0-0-0-0.00
Joao Henrique Lucas, 0-0-0-0.00
Tye Chandler, 0-0-0-0.00
Brennon Eldred, 0-0-0-0.00
Bruno Scaranello, 0-0-0-0.00
Amadeu Campos Silva, 0-0-0-0.00
Cody Campbell, 0-0-0-0.00
Taylor Toves, 0-0-0-0.00
Marcus Mast, 0-0-0-0.00
Brady Sims, 0-0-0-0.00
Jake Lockwood, 0-0-0-0.00
Dakota Louis, 0-0-0-0.00
Michael Lane, 0-0-0-0.00

By PBR Press Release

Easton Colvin 
Public Relations Manager 
Professional Bull Riders, LLC

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