Some call it "the most dangerous eight seconds in sports." Bull riding is a rodeo sport that involves a rider getting on a large bull and attempting to stay mounted for at least eight seconds while the animal attempts to buck off the rider. It requires balance, control and a strong arm.
Bulls have their own unique name and number used to identify the bull. A sufficient number of bulls, each judged to be of good strength, health, agility, and age, are selected to perform. The rider and bull are matched randomly before the competition. The bull rider uses a flat-braided rope with a single hand-hold that is pulled tight behind the bull’s shoulders and held fast by the cowboy’s riding hand. The cowboy must stay on the bull using only one hand on the rope.
Throughout the ride, bullfighters, also popularly known as rodeo clowns stay near the bull in order to aid the rider if necessary. When the ride ends, either intentionally or not, the bullfighters distract the bull to protect the rider from harm.