Ahead of the second season of the ground-breaking PBR (Professional Bull Riders) Team Series, the Oklahoma Freedom today announced that their annual homestand, PBR Freedom Fest, will return to Paycom Center Sept. 8-10
Tickets for the event are on sale now, and start at $20, taxes and fees not included. They can be purchased online at Ticketmaster.com and PBR.com, at the Paycom Center Box Office, or by calling PBR customer service at 1-800-732-1727.
The Freedom are Oklahoma’s first-ever professional bull riding team, competing in the PBR Team Series, which transforms bull riding from an individual to team-formatted competition. Under the leadership of Head Coach and four-time PBR World Finals qualifier Cord McCoy, in addition to Assistant Coach and 2009 PBR World Champion Kody Lostroh, the team features a talent-packed roster including 2021 PBR Rookie of the Year Eli Vastbinder, annual world title contenders Chase Outlaw and Derek Kolbaba, rising young stars Tate Pollmeier, Casey Roberts, and Briggs Madsen, as well as two-time PBR World Champion Jess Lockwood.
During the 2023 regular season, each of the eight founding teams will compete in 28 head-to-head, five-on-five bull riding games¸ held across 10 events. The team with the highest aggregate score will be the game winner.
Each team will host a three-day homestand, welcoming the seven other teams, while also competing in two neutral site events, beginning with the season-launch event on July 24-25 in Cheyenne, Wyoming. The season will conclude in Las Vegas on Oct. 20-22, when the teams will go head-to-head in the PBR Team Series Championship, vying to be crowned the 2023 Team Series Champions.
PBR Freedom Fest will mark the sixth event of the 2023 PBR Team Series season, and fourth team-hosted homestand.
After becoming the first team to win their homestand in 2022, the Oklahoma Freedom will return to the arena this summer keen to win their first PBR Team Series Championship.
In 2022, the Oklahoma Freedom delivered a torrid regular season, going 16-12 in game play to advance to the Championship as the league’s No. 3 seed. Despite a Round 1 loss at the Championship, the Freedom battled their way through the progressive elimination tournament’s first Last Chance Game, delivering back-to-back 90-point rides, to keep their title hopes alive. The team advanced to the Semifinals after defeating the No. 4 Carolina Cowboys by 2.25 points, compliments of a go-ahead game-winning score from first-round draft pick Eli Vastbinder.
In the Semifinals, the No. 5 Arizona Ridge Riders stood between Oklahoma and the Championship Game. Despite leading the game until the fifth frame, the Freedom were ultimately defeated 89.25-176.25.
In the team’s final game of the season, the Freedom took on the No. 2 Texas Rattlers in the Third-Place Game for the PBR Team Series Championship. The Freedom were outscored by two rides in the 86.75-270 loss, concluding the 2022 season in fourth place.
During the regular season, the Freedom notably became the first team to win their homestand. Going 3-0 at the inaugural Freedom Fest, they earned the hometown victory by defeating the Austin Gamblers, Texas Rattlers and Carolina Cowboys.
During the offseason for PBR Teams, the Freedom’s riders have proved a force on the premier individual tour, the PBR Unleash The Beast. Fresh off his career-first PBR premier series event win at the most recent stop in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Captain Eli Vastbinder leads his team, ranked No. 16 in the standings.
Vastbinder is joined inside the Top 30 in the standings by young gun Tate Pollmeier, who is ranked No. 21 as he chases his first PBR World Finals berth, Kolbaba, who holds down the No. 22 position, and a surging Lockwood, who has risen to No. 30 in the standings having competed at just two events.
The Freedom will be one of the featured bull riding teams in the highly anticipated upcoming docuseries The Ride, debuting later this year on Prime Video.
The bull riding action for the 2023 PBR Team Series’ Freedom Fest at Paycom Center begins at 7:45 p.m. CT on Friday, September 8, 6:45 p.m. CT on Saturday, September 9, and 1:45 p.m. CT on Sunday, September 10.
Three-day ticket packages are available, offering fans a 15% discount on select price levels.
About the Oklahoma Freedom:
The Oklahoma Freedom are based at Paycom Center in Oklahoma City, joining team tenants including the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder, and their G League affiliate Oklahoma City Blue, where the team will hold its second Freedom Fest homestand on September 8-10, 2023, the sixth event of the 10-event 2023 PBR Team Series regular season. The Freedom are coached by Oklahoma native Cord McCoy, a former bull rider and four-time qualifier for PBR World Finals.
About the PBR Team Series:
The PBR Team Series is an elite league featuring the world’s top bull riders competing on teams in five-on-five bull riding games during an 11-event season beginning in July and culminating in a Team Championship at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas October 20-22. During the 2023 season, the league’s second, each of the eight teams – Austin Gamblers of Austin, TX; Arizona Ridge Riders of Glendale, AZ; Carolina Cowboys of Greensboro, NC; Kansas City Outlaws of Kansas City, MO; Nashville Stampede of Nashville, TN; Oklahoma Freedom of Oklahoma City, OK; Missouri Thunder of Ridgedale, MO; and Texas Rattlers of Fort Worth, TX – will host a three-day homestand. There are also neutral-site games in Cheyenne, WY and Anaheim, CA.
The PBR Team Series, which launched in July 2022, builds on the existing structure of professional bull riding with the same basic rules for judging and scoring qualified 8-second bull rides. Events are staged in a tournament-style format with all teams competing in head-to-head matchups against a different opponent each day. Each game features five riders per team squaring off against another team. Full team rosters are comprised of seven riders on the Protected Roster and five riders on the Practice Roster. The team with the highest aggregate score of qualified rides among its riders is declared the winner of each game. The event winner is the team with the most game wins across an event, with a special bonus round designed as a tie-breaker to determine final event standings. All PBR Team Series events are carried on either the CBS Television Network, streaming live on Paramount+, CBS Sports Network, or RidePass on Pluto TV.
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