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Kicking up their heels at Rockley

ADRENALINE RUSH: Wayne Crisp, originally from Rockley, saddled up to compete in the open bull ride on Novocane at yesterday’s Rockley Rodeo. Photo: CHRIS SEABROOK 030815crodeoIN the seconds before his event, Bathurst man Richard Treanor is focused and alert.

He climbs the fence, sits atop a writhing one-tonne bull and the adrenaline starts to build. Focus is key, and the number one rule kicks in – don’t let go.

Bull rider Mr Treanor may have a swag of titles under his cowboy-buckled belt, but the rider handed the luck of the day over to the bulls at yesterday’s Rockley Rodeo.

He was among 110 entrants at the annual event, which traditionally draws a big crowd to the tiny village south of Bathurst each year.

The 25-year-old may have been competing for almost a decade, but he said some weekends just don’t go your way.

This was the fourth time he has ridden Novocane – a bull with a fearsome reputation on the rodeo circuit.

In yesterday’s open bull ride he was bucked off just a few seconds into the eight-second time he needed to stay atop the bucking beast.

“It got the better of me, it’s the third time he’s bucked me off [at various rodeos],” he said.

Mr Treanor was just 17 years old when he decided to have a crack at bull riding, and he says it’s a sport he’ll continue “as long as I can”.

“I decided to jump on a bull one day and it’s been like that ever since,” he said.

“It’s the adrenaline and the fun … I’ll just go jump- to-jump and hope for the best.”

The young Bathurst man is an up-and-coming rodeo star with awards in national events, as well as wins in the East to West Coast Rodeo Champion- ships in 2012 and 2013.

While yesterday’s rodeo didn’t go his way, Mr Treanor said he’s learned a thing or two about bull riding thanks to eight years on the rodeo circuit.

“Don’t let go and try and move with the bull rather than against it,” he said.

“Where I’m at now you’ve got reaction time … once it’s doing something [the bull] you’ve got a split second to react.”

Despite his numerous awards, Mr Treanor still has his sights set high in bull riding.

“I’ll be working towards winning an Australian title,” he said.

Rockley Rodeo secretary Ros Press said while the crowds might have been down on previous years, the rodeo still attracted stars of the sport from across three states.

“The committee tries to focus the day as a family day – that’s why we have it on a Sunday,” she said.

The event is also a fundraiser and again supported Cancer Care Patients Assistance Society as it has done for the last 20 years.

“We’ve probably given $12-$15,000 over that time,” Ms Press said.

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