Rodeo clowns are serious business
A RODEO clown's job is no laughing matter.
Often it is he who stands between the full wrath of a menacing bull and a prone cowboy.
The bullfighters, as they're known, are a godsend for the sport's more fashionable superstars.
So personal recognition from the riders themselves is an honour for Joel Chevalley. He is the 2013 National Rodeo Association Bullfighter of the Year, voted by the top 12 bull riders.
"It's good to know they think you've done a good job all year," Chevalley said.
The 22-year-old will be in the thick of the action tonight doing what he does best at the Maclean Rodeo.
Kyogle's Scott Tough will also return to Maclean for protection clown duties. As event organiser Bruce Palmer attests, it takes "guts" to do their job.
However, comedy clown Ian Bostock will add some more light-hearted entertainment to the bill.
Meanwhile, many of the best riders in the land will be competing including saddlebronc icon Quirindi's Mark Palmer along with last year's winner at Maclean, current ABCRA champion Luke Morgan.