For the seventh time in league history, PBR’s (Professional Bull Riders) Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT) will buck into Wichita, Kansas, and INTRUST Bank Arena, welcoming fans for the two-day PBR Wichita Invitational Apr. 23-24.
For two nights only, some of the best bull riders in the world will battle the sport’s rankest bovine athletes in the ultimate showdown of man vs. beast in one of the most exciting live sporting events to witness.
In cooperation with local government, and through the dual activation of ASM Global’s “VenueShield” reopening plan and the PBR’s “Be Cowboy Safe” guidelines, both INTRUST Bank Arena and PBR will institute a series of protocols to enhance the safety of guests, including:
-All fans as well as staff and competitors will be required to wear face masks inside INTRUST Bank Arena.
-All PBR personnel will undergo Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)-informed screening and medical testing for COVID-19.
-Touchless temperature checks will be performed daily on all INTRUST Bank Arena and PBR personnel, including staff, competitors and contractors.
-PBR will sell limited arena capacity to separate fans. All fans will be in POD seating, to physically distance groups of fans and minimize fan crossover when entering and exiting their seats.
-Focus on mobile-only ticketing through customers’ Select-A-Seat account.
-Signage will be placed strategically throughout INTRUST Bank Arena to encourage physical distancing and health safety protocols, as well as remind guests of new and updated policies.
-Increased availability of pre-packaged concessions, including cutlery and condiments.
-Increased sanitization of high-contact areas including doors, railings, concession counters, merchandise stands, bathrooms and elevators.
-Hand sanitizer stations will be placed throughout the venue at high volume areas to promote hand hygiene.
INTRUST Bank Arena welcomed fans back in January 2020, hosting 15% arena capacity for Wichita Thunder hockey games. In the months since, evolving regulations have allowed INTRUST Bank Arena to increase its attendance to 28.5% of capacity for each game.
PBR’s Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour last travelled to Wichita in 2019 when electric young gun Daylon Swearingen (Piffard, New York) captured his career-first PWVT event win. The New York native’s victory was highlighted by a Round 1-winning, 89-point ride aboard Test Me.
Pivotal in his rise to prominence on the world stage, Swearingen made his Unleash The Beast debut two weeks later in Columbus, Ohio due large in part to his PWVT win in Wichita. Swearingen climbed the world rankings as the season progressed and made his World Finals debut in November, while simultaneously qualifying for the Wrangler National Finals Rodeo, becoming the youngest athlete in history to qualify for both prestigious events in the same season
Other past Wichita Invitational event winners include: Ouncie Mitchell (2018 – Fresno, Texas); Cody Heffernan (2017 – Singleton, New South Wales, Australia); Nevada Newman (2016 – Melstone, Montana); Cody White Tyler (2015 – Talala, Oklahoma); and Juan Alonzo (2014 – Weslaco, Texas).
While INTRUST Bank Arena has welcomed the Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour each season since its founding in 2014, with the exception of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the city has also hosted the PBR’s Unleash The Beast (UTB) and Touring Pro Division (TPD) a collective five times. Those winners include: Valdiron de Oliveira (2013 TPD – Balcimo, Brazil); Ryan Dirteater (2011 UTB – Hulbert, Oklahoma); Austin Meier (2010 UTB – Kinta, Oklahoma); Skeeter Kingsolver (2009 TPD – McLouth, Kansas); and Cole Taylor (2007 TPD – Sayre, Oklahoma).
The PBR Wichita Invitational will tentatively mark the eighth PWVT event of the year, with PBR’s fastest-growing tour first stopping in cities including Greenville, South Carolina; Lexington, Kentucky; Pensacola, Florida and Grand Forks, North Dakota.
The bull riding action for the PBR Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour’s Wichita Invitational begins at 8:00 p.m. CDT on Friday, April 23 and 7:00 p.m. CDT on Saturday, April 24 at INTRUST Bank Arena.
On Saturday night, all 45 competing riders will attempt one bull each in Round 1. The Top 30 riders from Round 1 will then return for Round 2 on Sunday afternoon. Following Round 2, the Top 15 will then advance to the championship round where they will attempt one final bull, all in an effort to be crowned the event champion.
Tickets for the eventgo on sale Wednesday, March 24at 10:00 a.m. CDT, and start at $15. They can be purchased online at SelectASeat.com or PBR.com, at the Select-A-Seat Box Office at INTRUST Bank Arena Box Office, or by calling PBR Customer Service at 1-800-732-1727.
For an enhanced PBR experience, fans can also purchase PBR Elite Experience Add On for $50, which will provide a behind-the-chutes look into the toughest sport on dirt.
The Elite Experience Add On includes a pre-event question and answer session with PBR stars, commemorative lanyard and photo opportunity on the shark cage. For more information, contact PBR Direct at 800-732-1727.
Throughout the 2021 season, PBR will continue to commit to providing a safe environment for fans, athletes, employees, and crew by working with its venue partners to implement industry-leading protocols for live events while following health guidance from local and state officials.
About the PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour:
The PBR’s Pendleton Whisky Velocity Tour (PWVT) began in 2014 as the premier expansion tour for the PBR. The Velocity Tour, the sport’s fastest-growing tour, brings the excitement and top-levels of cowboy and bovine talent that fans have come to expect from the sport to cities across the United States. The PWVT is proudly supported by Pendleton Whisky, Lucas Oil, the United States Border Patrol, Boot Barn, Cooper Tires, USCCA, Union Home Mortgage, TicketSmarter and the South Point Hotel and Casino. Every Velocity Tour event is carried by RidePass, the PBR’s flagship digital network.