Professional Bull Riders (PBR) Invitational 

Runs through Saturday, April 5

Here's the thing about professional bull riding--its not just the cowboys who are tough as nails, fiercely competitive and ready for almost anything, it's the bulls, too. That's right, just like their riders, the bulls are competing during every ride, gunning for the title of World Champion. How do they do it? By bucking, of course. And twisting, swerving, ducking, kicking, dropping and rolling. In short, anything that will cause riders to lose their balance and be thrown to the ground.

In case you haven't heard, it's kind of a big deal--world class bull riders from around the country will compete for coveted championship points as they willingly strap themselves to the backs of gigantic, grumpy beef for eight long seconds. Did we mention the bulls are bred specifically for size, speed, athleticism and a wily disposition? Oh, and the rider has to match the bull move for move, all while keeping his free arm from touching the animal--an automatic disqualification.

It's no wonder these animals come with less-than-cozy names like Meat Hook, Smackdown, Trainwreck and Red Dragon. They are huge, scary and toss snorts of ropy snot around like they really mean it--clearly not a sport for the faint of heart.

In terms of ranking, the fewer riders a bull allows to stay on his back, the better. This year, a bull named Bushwacker is leading the pack, with a buck-off rate of 93 percent. No matter how you slice it, that is one smart, athletic animal.

Check out clever bulls and their courageous riders this Friday, April 4, and Saturday, April 5, at the Ford Idaho Center in Nampa, where the PBR will host the DeWalt Guaranteed Tough Invitational.

All in all, the PBR promises to be a serious show of strength and agility--both human and animal.

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