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Missouri bull rider Brady Sims is making his way on top professional circuit

Brady Sims of Holt, Mo., competed in the Professional Bull Riders’ Caterpillar Classic on Saturday at the Sprint Center.
Brady Sims of Holt, Mo., competed in the Professional Bull Riders’ Caterpillar Classic on Saturday at the Sprint Center. Special to the Star

Saturday marked one year on the Professional Bull Rider’s Built Ford Tough series Tour for Brady Sims, a native of Holt, Mo.

Sims has learned plenty during his time on the PBR’s grandest stage. Believe it or not, the biggest lessons Sims has picked up have everything to do with logistics, and nothing to do staying astride the ton of livestock intent on sending him flying.

“You kind of learn ways to travel, the right ways to do things, the cheapest way, the most efficient way and all that kind of stuff,” Sims said. “You learn your way around the hardest airports. You learn how to schedule yourself, time stuff out, all of that.

“The riding, you learn something new every day, and if you’re not learning something new, you’re not doing it right. But I could sit here and talk for days about learning stuff in bull riding.”

Sims entered Saturday’s Caterpillar Classic at the Sprint Center ranked No. 22 in the world standings.

Sims stayed in contention in Saturday’s bull-riding competition by riding Legacy for 85.75 points.

Sims has placed in four Built Ford Tough events this season, including a career-best third-place in Sacramento on Jan. 30.

His breakthrough came in January of 2014, when he won a Touring Pro Event in Toledo, Ohio, that made him the top alternate for the PBR stop in St. Louis.

Sims got into the St. Louis field and finished ninth. That propelled him into the top 35 and gave him a spot on the top tour.

“There’s about 6,000 people in the world, we’re talking the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Brazil and Australia, that have a PBR card,” Sims said.

“Those 6,000 guys are trying to get to the 35 spots on the Built Ford Tough Series, which is the top series in the world.”

Sims started riding early — as a kindergartner, when a friend asked him to go to a “mutton busting.” He failed to hold onto the sheep, and now remembers crying after he fell off. But he came back for more.

It’s a long way from Holt to becoming one of the world’s best bull riders, but Sims never doubted he’d make it.

“I’ve always kind of known this is what I wanted to do, and I’ve known I was good enough,” Sim said. “I just had to beat it into myself and make myself be good enough.

“If you don’t believe in yourself, you’re never going to go anywhere. Believing in yourself is a big part of it, but believing in yourself and actually doing it is pretty dang hard too.”

Sims is at home when he’s on top of a bull and close to home in this weekend’s event.

“You know everybody is out there pulling for you just a little bit more because you’re a hometown guy. It definitely makes you try harder and hold on a little bit longer,” Sims said.