Bulls coming to Carson

The bulls will be running at the Carson City Fairgrounds on Saturday and cowboys will be riding them, for a little while anyway.

"They're bad bulls," said organizer Ron Saunders of the animals which have been featured on ESPN. "A few of them have never been ridden."

Saunders said he is expecting 30 bull riders vying for a $5,000 purse at this weekend's Carson City Bull Riders Challenge.

"We will bring the top six back for the final go-around and we'll have five cowboys doing a wild ride and mutton-busting for the kids."

There will also be a couple of hands of cowboy poker.

"Four cowboys sit down at a card table and we turn the bulls loose," Saunders described the game. "The last one sitting at the table takes the pot."

The winner of the challenge will get a gold belt buckle at a ceremony at the Carson Station after the event. Last year the Station bought a drink for everyone who attended the ceremony.

"We had 500 people there," Saunders said.

Tickets for the challenge are $10 in advance and $12 at the gate. Ringside seats are available for $13 in advance and $15 at the gate. Ringside seats are a great way to watch the action, Saunders said.

"We cut the arena in half and you are right down at ground level with the bull," Saunders said. "You'll get dirt kicked on you."

This is the second year for the bull ride, which Saunders started after a challenge from Tony Dureer of Red Bluff, who supplies the bulls. About 2,300 people attended the challenge last year

Saunders, 58, is an auctioneer by trade and has lived in Carson City for 40 years. He said he met Dureer through his fiancee and suggested the bull raiser bring a show to Carson.

"He said why don't your put one one," Saunders said.

Saunders, who was raised in Susanville, used to own horses and would ride steers on his grandfather's ranch, but he never really competed on bulls himself.

Tickets are available in advance from Raleys and Corral West in Carson City and Reno.

Miss Rodeo Nevada Melissa Cook will be at the Challenge, which is sponsored by about 20 Carson City businesses. The belt buckle is on display at Corral West in Carson.

If you go

What: Carson City Bull Riders Challenge

When: 5 p.m. Saturday

Where: Carson City Fairgrounds

Tickets: $10 in advance, $12 at gate; Ringside seats $13 in advance, $15 at gate.

For information: Call Ron Saunders at 883-4499 or 720-8243


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