RFD-TV adds bull riding, roughstock to its lineup

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Posted: Thursday, April 11, 2013 12:00 am

Fans of livestock competitions will find more to watch on RFD-TV.

Roughstock rodeo, cutting horse competitions and highlight reels of Professional Bull Riders events are all coming to the rural lifestyle network owned by the growing Omaha-based Rural Media Group, which we profiled in February.

“As RFD-TV moves forward, viewers will see an increasing amount of western sports and improved quality of programming throughout the network,” CEO Randy Bernard said in a statement.

The Professional Roughstock Series will be broadcast to more homes as part of a new multi-year contract signed between the Belle Fourche, S.D. rodeo series and Rural Media Group.

Weekly PRS programming will be distributed via cable and satellite to than 40 million U.S. households beginning May 3. Previously PRS was available in about 13 million homes via satellite.

“The addition of PRS to RFD-TV is the next step forward for us in our drive to bring more western sports and quality event programming to our viewers and fans,” said Randy Bernard, CEO of Rural Media Group.

Roughstock includes bareback, saddle bronc and bull riding. RFD-TV will broadcast 30-minute programs, featuring highlights from live events, on Fridays at 9 p.m. central time, with reruns at 1:30 p.m. the following Sunday. The first episode will be an introductory show intended to help build a fan base for roughstock riding, Bernard said.

Separately, the National Cutting Horse Association's World Championship Futurity will air in December on RFD-TV. The $4 million competition for three-year-old cutting horses draws an audience of more than 12,000 to Fort Worth, Texas.

The association said one of the deciding factors in selecting RFD-TV was the network's focus on western sports.

RFD-TV will also air the NCHA Super Stakes and Summer Spectacular, for the complete Triple Crown series.

Finally, Professional Bull Riders -- where Bernard formerly served as CEO -- has created 20, 90-minute episodes showcasing what it calls the top 20 PBR events of all time, the Associated Press reported.

“There is no better way to celebrate PBR's 20th anniversary than by taking a trip down memory lane with RFD-TV,” said Sean Gleason, PBR's chief operating officer. “Some of the greatest bull riding events in history have been locked in the vaults over the past 20 years and this is the first opportunity that anyone will have to see them.”

PBR and RFD-TV combed through hours of archived footage to put together the series, which covers 20 events chosen by industry veterans, according to the Associated Press. The first 12 weeks will feature competitions, including the St. Louis 2001 event, where PBR riders produced 11 “90-plus” rides.

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