TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - The final weekend of rodeo is underway and thousands of guests continue to saddle up for the competition. Safety is always first priority at La Fiesta de los Vaqueros, and this year three bull fighting clowns are on standby in case something goes wrong.
Their faces may be painted, but their job is no joke.
"Our job is like the secret service or a fireman," said Wacey Munsell. "When somebody's in trouble we go help. If somebody wasn't out there they could kill them., and then if say, a bull rider hangs up, he could be hung there for two jumps or five minutes without us out there so there's a lot of 'what ifs' in this game."
The old rodeo tradition used to have the clown in the area for entertainment, but they also acted as bull fighters to make sure the cowboy's stayed safe.
In modern rodeo's, the bull fighters are on their own.
"For mine, Wacey's and Nathan's job is very serious and dangerous," said Dosty Tuckness. "We're out there to protect and we're a line of defense for the bull riders so we get in-between them when they come off of the bucking bull and directing that bull away."
The three bull fighters at this year's rodeo don't go unnoticed.
"Wives and moms and dads have come up to me and thanked me and it really means a lot to me and makes me humbled knowing that we're appreciated even outside the area," said Tuckness. "So we get the respect from the bull riders and their family members so it's a neat job and I wouldn't trade it for anything."