Until the advent of Bullfighting, Bull Riding was known as the most dangerous event in rodeo. Bull riding requires a positive attitude from the cowboy and a will to look fear in the face as he matches wits and moves with a Rodeo Bull. A braided rope, of varying width, is wrapped loosely around the bull with a weighted cowbell hanging underneath, allowing the rope to fall free when the ride is completed. The rope has a woven handhold which is pulled tight around the rider’s hand with one more wrap taken to ensure a snug fit. During the ride the cowboy must keep himself close up on the handhold to prevent his arm from straightening and jerking has hand loose. He will be disqualified for failing to have to have a bell attached to his rope, or touching the bull with his free hand or bucking off before the end of an eight second ride.
Riders are not required to spur, as staying on these loose-hided animals is difficult enough. But naturally, if they do, they receive a better mark. Pick up men are not used as a bull would just as soon fight a man on horseback as one on foot. The rider must depend on the bullfighting clown to distract the bull until he is out of range.