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By Dan Hutton on July 21, 2017 in Sport

Picture: Donald Trump

On Saturday, July 22, the cowboys are coming to Sydney’s Olympic Park. No, not the footy team. Genuine cowboys. Blokes in big hats with wide gaits and strong jaws. You better lock up your daughters and twinks.*

“This is not a rodeo,” they attest. “It’s the one and only Professional Bull Riders.”

I am not sure us city folk would be able to tell the difference, to be honest, but looking through the photographs it sure as hell looks like a rodeo. Are there rodeo clowns? Sadly, I don’t think so. They must have unionised and rebranded.

I’ve never seen the movie ‘8 Seconds’, but I believe the main takeaways from it were that Luke Perry makes a damn fine cowboy and bull riders are doing well if they last eight seconds on a bull. From my experience, lasting only eight seconds has never been a cause for celebration, but I have never ridden a bull and nor do I intend to. It is one of those things – like collagen lip injections or marathon running – where I just wonder why the hell people even bother.

Because they’re insane, is the only hypothesis I can come up with. After watching a few clips online of these PBR characters, it is the only logical summation. Bulls are not small creatures, nor are they very friendly. Riding a one tonne ball of muscle that not only wants to buck you off, but also end your life, seems like a strange way to spend a Saturday afternoon. I once got chased out of a field by a grumpy ram and when that little bastard got a good run at me, it was scary enough. I was walking funny for weeks!

Which brings us to their lead in line for the event: “Eight seconds of glory or a lifetime of pain.” A lifetime of pain? What the hell? Because a bull stamps on your head, knees, and genitals, and you never walk, shag, or think straight again? Well, I’m not sure the eight seconds of glory is long enough for me to take that risk. Switch the time periods and then we’ll talk. I’m pretty sure even I can handle eight seconds of pain.

Despite my sheer awe at the madness of these people, I can’t deny it makes for one hell of a show. Horrible, yes. Terrifying, certainly. It makes my back ache just watching it. But man versus beast always makes for a thrilling contest. It’s like watching Cameron Smith tackle David Klemmer. As long as both walk away with their lives, I’m okay with it.

* Please don’t actually do this.