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Bouts in the Redwoods

Bullfighters Only taking its game to the northern California town of Fortuna

Toby Inman will be one of nine men competing at the Bullfighters Only-Fortuna today. (TODD BREWER PHOTO)

FORTUNA, Calif – If quad racing wasn’t an extreme enough event for fans in this northern California community, Friday’s event is about to be intensified.

This year’s event will include nine of the greatest men from Bullfighters Only, a wild and Western way of showcasing true athleticism in the form of freestyle bullfighting. One man vs. one beast in a 60-second bout that features aggressive fighting bulls and men who maneuver around them while staying within inches of their pointy horns and stomping feet.

“We’re going to introduce the sport to a gnarly bunch of people,” BFO founder Aaron Ferguson said. “There is a track that’s probably 100 feet around, and they race and party all day. It’s going to be incredible.”

It also will feature amazing bullfighters.

“I’ve heard we’re going to be surrounded by Redwoods, and there’s a lot of money up for grabs,” said Beau Schueth, the No. 5 man in the BFO Pendleton Whisky World Standings from O’Neill, Neb. “It’s a good time for the bullfight too, because we can work that event, then just stay in California until we have the bullfight in Salinas (Calif.).”

Toby Inman of Davis Junction, Ill., is returning to the ring for the first time in more than a month, and he’s ready to get back to work in the game he loves.

“I think I might have forgotten how to do it,” he said with a laugh. “I’m excited, because I have it in my mind that I’m going to win. Of course, if you don’t have that mindset, then I guess you probably shouldn’t be doing this.”

The event will feature nine bullfighters, competing in three rounds of three-man bouts. The top scorers in each round will advance to the championship round, and the high score there will claim the title.

Freestyle bullfighting is not new but the Bullfighters Only has created public demand for the sport. The events feature man vs. beast in a head-to-head battle inside an arena. The bullfighters utilize their tremendous athleticism to try to outwit and outmaneuver equally athletic bulls.

BFO-Fortuna is one of two events taking place this week, with BFO wrapping up last night in Colorado Springs. Schueth was crowned the champion on Thursday night and will look to keep his streak alive in Fortuna on Friday.

CONTESTANTS
Beau Schueth
Zach Call
Ely Sharkey
Tanner Zarnetski
Toby Inman
Schell Apple
Dayton Spiel
Alex McWilliams
Garrett Wilkenson

Courtesy of twisTEDrodeo.com