Where the Buck Stops

In the dung-and-sawdust scented world of bull riding, the verb ride is precisely defined. It does not mean "to sit atop a bucking, spinning, hurtling, heaving beast that wants nothing more than to throw you to kingdom come." That is merely to get on the bull. To ride it you must get on and stay there—for eight seconds. Which, in layman's time, is about six seconds longer than impossible.

In the sandy arena out the back of Rockhampton's Great Western Hotel on this Saturday night, 45 cowboys in cocky white straw hats and cautious padded vests will lower...

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