Riding hard for his dream career
WITH nerves of steel and an iron will, fearless Queenslander Budd Williamson lives for the adrenaline rush of putting his life on the line every time he climbs aboard a one-tonne beast determined to get him the hell off its back.
Making the eight seconds Budd's ultimate goal.
"My father rode bulls, and my family has been involved in rodeos forever,” he said.
"As a kid, I grabbed every chance I could to climb on something and pretend I was a bull rider - a bucket, dogs, the barrel set up on the farm.
"I grew up on the land and wore a cowboy hat to school - it's who I am and comes as second nature. Bull riding is what I live for.”
Now he's the real deal, and has been involved in the PBR for 10 years, in Australia, Canada, Mexico and the US.
In this bone-crushing sport, Budd knows equally what it's like to be bucked-off as well as the thrill of making the eight seconds that can pass by like a ticking time bomb.
Like his fellow bull riders, he brings a whole new meaning to guts and glory.
"You learn to play the cards you've been dealt,” he said.
Enduring extensive injuries to almost every part of his body, which include 11 broken ribs, two punctured lungs, shoulder, jaw and face injuries which required reconstructions, a broken collarbone, and more cuts, bruises and sprains then he can count, it just proves without a doubt that nothing will stop this determined bull rider.
"It's just all part of it and comes with the territory,” he said.
"Bull riders don't know fear. We can't. Mental toughness means everything.
"Injuries just add fuel to the fire and make you even more determined to get better and get back out there, riding bulls.”
Unlike other sports, there's no room for error in the arena.
"I have the highest respect for footballers.
"But being knocked over in a footy field is nothing compared to being stomped on by a bull if you're bucked off and unlucky enough to get in the way.”
Outside of bull riding, Budd a fitter and turner by trade, divides his time between working on the family cane farm where they also have commercial cattle and helping at the family barber shop in his hometown of Ayr.
When asked his favourite saying, he unwaveringly replies, "Nobody remembers the guy that comes in second.”
Losing is just not an option for him.
A gutsy, driven, fearless bloke, and also very down-to-earth, Budd is looking forward to the run of PBR events leading into the July Cup Series - July 8, Cairns Convention Centre; July 15, Brisbane Entertainment Centre, Last Cowboy Standing; and July 22, Qudos Arena Sydney Australian National Finals.
Tickets on sale now click onto www.pbraustralia.com.au.